Page 1 of 2
#1
This blew my mind a tiny bit.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-13452711

The Amondawa were first contacted by the outside world in 1986, and now researchers from the University of Portsmouth and the Federal University of Rondonia in Brazil have begun to analyse the idea of time as it appears in Amondawa language.

"We're really not saying these are a 'people without time' or 'outside time'," said Chris Sinha, a professor of psychology of language at the University of Portsmouth.

"Amondawa people, like any other people, can talk about events and sequences of events," he told BBC News.

"What we don't find is a notion of time as being independent of the events which are occuring; they don't have a notion of time which is something the events occur in."

The Amondawa language has no word for "time", or indeed of time periods such as "month" or "year".
#3
So just because they don't use the terms: yesterday, year, month they are doing something so mind-blowing?
Quote by tattyreagh
He's the hero The Pit deserves but not the one it needs right now. So, we'll hunt him, because he can take it. Because he's not our hero. He's a silent guardian. A watchful protector. GbAdimDb5m7.


Free Jani92jani

Free Will Swanson
#4
I don't see what's so amazing about this
dirtbag ballet by the bins down the alley
as i walk through the chalet of the shadow of death
everything that you've come to expect


#5
Quote by GbAdimDb5m7
So just because they don't use the terms: yesterday, year, month they are doing something so mind-blowing?

No, as in they have no linguistic concept of time as separate to events. 'Time' isn't something that happens outside of events to the Amondawa; sequences of events can be described, but a separate metanarrative of 'time' can't be expressed.
#7
Old, I read that article tomorrow.
Quote by Pleasure2kill
The truth is, Muslims never apologized for their faith having something to do with the attacks on 9/11.
#8
That's retarded. I've listened to a professor talk about this subject. They don't lack the concept of time, they just can't express it.

I've heard the same thing about an aboriginal tribe that only uses north, west, east and south for bearings and has no way of expressing left and right but that doesn't mean that they can't comprehend the notion of left or right.
Quote by the_white_bunny
your just a simpleton that cant understand strategy apparently.

Quote by the_white_bunny
all hail king of the penis sucking(i said balls. you said dick for some reason?) Isabiggles
#9
Most southeast asian indigenous tribes also don't have the concept of time. And it shows in their music: it just start and end suddenly. No concept of beginning and no concept of ending.
#10
Quote by damian_91
Old, I read that article tomorrow.



Caught me off guard.
Quote by SlackerBabbath
My ideal woman would be a grossly overweight woman who would happy go jogging, come home all sweaty and let me put my dick under her armpit while she shuffles a pack of cards.

Stay classy, pit.
#12
Quote by damian_91
Old, I read that article tomorrow.

**** you I was drinking coke as I read this
Quote by tattyreagh
He's the hero The Pit deserves but not the one it needs right now. So, we'll hunt him, because he can take it. Because he's not our hero. He's a silent guardian. A watchful protector. GbAdimDb5m7.


Free Jani92jani

Free Will Swanson
#13
Quote by damian_91
Old, I read that article tomorrow.


Quote by CFH82
Ejaculate in MY moustache?!

Music is just wiggly air. Accept it or leave it.ಠ_ಠ
#16
These claims are almost always hugely over emphasised in the press (isn;t that always the case though). However language does play a certain framing role in cognition whilst not necesarily altering it at it's base.

Quote by isabiggles
That's retarded. I've listened to a professor talk about this subject. They don't lack the concept of time, they just can't express it.

I've heard the same thing about an aboriginal tribe that only uses north, west, east and south for bearings and has no way of expressing left and right but that doesn't mean that they can't comprehend the notion of left or right.


Nah it does sometimes end up locking the individuals off from concepts due to critical periods of learning being missed or leaves them with difficulty in understanding them due to sensitive periods being missed (can't say if that's the situation here, not read the study). But really this isn't too suprising or unusual, everyone in this thread would fail hard at speaking zulu given they'd be unable to identify certain sounds.

Quote by metaldud536
They're basically stupid right?

I don't see how they'll ever be able to advance as a people.


Sweet eurocentrism there. Time becomes a necesity some time after basic trade arises, they don't have that they're really not missing out on too much.
Quote by Nosferatu Man

T-shirts are a sign of degeneration and decline.
Last edited by leeb rocks at May 20, 2011,
#17
Quote by leeb rocks

Nah it does sometimes end up locking the individuals off from concepts due to critical periods of learning being missed or leaves them with difficulty in understanding them due to sensitive periods being missed (can't say if that's the situation here, not read the study). But really this isn't too suprising or unusual, everyone in this thread would fail hard at speaking zulu given they'd be unable to identify certain sounds.


It doesn't though. They may not be able to express time but they are still able to understand the concept of it. It may seem strange to them but they're perfectly aware of it. The same way that in my example, the aboriginal people understand the concept of left and right but just don't use it.
Quote by the_white_bunny
your just a simpleton that cant understand strategy apparently.

Quote by the_white_bunny
all hail king of the penis sucking(i said balls. you said dick for some reason?) Isabiggles
#18
That's quite interesting because it's something that comes quite naturally to most of us.

Also I love how it's the University of my city that did this They don't offer my course though


Quote by damian_91
Old, I read that article tomorrow.


Brilliant.
Stand up and cheer if you like SimCity

Play Up Pompey, Pompey Play Up
THE WiLDHEARTS

Quote by goest
I'm going to take this opportunity to initiate my campaign to replace the phrase "Taking a shit" with "Busting a grumpy."
#19
The only reasonable answer is that they are Tralfamadorians.
Voted 3rd Friendliest User of UG 2010

BUILD A TIME MACHINE, AND JERK OFF IN IT, AND SEND IT TO HITLER!


Saxo-Walrus

Steam & PSN ID: Panopticon20
#21
Quote by isabiggles
It doesn't though. They may not be able to express time but they are still able to understand the concept of it. It may seem strange to them but they're perfectly aware of it. The same way that in my example, the aboriginal people understand the concept of left and right but just don't use it.


We're going to get bogged down in a semantic quaqmire around time here I feel. But my guess is the researchers had a pretty specific conception of time in mind and given how much such ideas can be socialised without us realising and how much baggage that sort of term can carry it's fully possible such a conception of time is alien to them (again not read the study, but it is possible).

EDIT: infact the finding that learning portugese enabled the understanding of the term pretty much shows (presuming the rest of the article holds) that their use of language was a clear barrier in understanding.
Quote by Nosferatu Man

T-shirts are a sign of degeneration and decline.
Last edited by leeb rocks at May 20, 2011,
#23
Quote by leeb rocks
EDIT: infact the finding that learning portugese enabled the understanding of the term pretty much shows (presuming the rest of the article holds) that their use of language was a clear barrier in understanding.

Or perhaps, to put it a different way, that because of the lack of need for temporal measurement in their society, their language hadn't evolved the ability to express absolute temporal concepts.
#24
Quote by Kumanji
Or perhaps, to put it a different way, that because of the lack of need for temporal measurement in their society, their language hadn't evolved the ability to express absolute temporal concepts.


Well yes but that's not really so interesting. I doubt their language has a way of symbolising Iphones too.
Quote by Nosferatu Man

T-shirts are a sign of degeneration and decline.
#25
What I understand from it is that rather than saying 'there was a big storm a month ago' the big storm was the landmark in time, not an arbitrary unit.

For example for them a mother would say, 'I gave birth to my child just before the big storm'

That's the way I see it, but I don't know!
#26
Quote by vitchb
What I understand from it is that rather than saying 'there was a big storm a month ago' the big storm was the landmark in time, not an arbitrary unit.

For example for them a mother would say, 'I gave birth to my child just before the big storm'

That's the way I see it, but I don't know!


Yeah, apparently they also use absolute terms to describe specific locations. Example: 'the River' which would denote a specific river that all the tribe are familiar with.
#27
Quote by damian_91
Old, I read that article tomorrow.




There's no such thing; there never was. Where I am going you cannot follow me now.
#28
Quote by T.s.e
Try to explain the theory of relativity to these guys


I thought about the same
Great minds think alike. Physics ftw!

Quote by leeb rocks
Well yes but that's not really so interesting. I doubt their language has a way of symbolising Iphones too.

They probably have a word for fecal matter...

Also, why do you even compare modern technology with something that's been around since, uhhmm, forever?

Also, Norwegian have a word for "24 hours". Mindblowing
ERROR 0x45: Signature not found
Last edited by sfaune92 at May 20, 2011,
#29
This is pretty interesting. My dissertation supervisor worked on something similar – an Amazonian language with no recursion. It doesn't mean they don't have the concept of recursion, but it is an interesting reflection of their life that they don't have it embedded in language.
#31
Quote by sfaune92

Also, why do you even compare modern technology with something that's been around since, uhhmm, forever?


Time as a concept evidently hasn't been around forever. Kinda the crux of the article...
Quote by Nosferatu Man

T-shirts are a sign of degeneration and decline.
#32
Quote by Kumanji
^ What's recursion?


It's when you have a subject within a subject, which can manifest itsself as phrases within sentences.

like "my sister's friend's mum had that problem" is recursion. To say it in a non-recursive way would be "my sister has a friend. Her friend has a mum. Her mum had that problem" and that's how it would be done in Piraha.

You could technically do recursion to infinity, it would just be really hard to follow, like "my sister's friend's mum's dog's butcher's cousin's doctor's friend said..."
#33
Quote by Mistress_Ibanez


You could technically do recursion to infinity, it would just be really hard to follow, like "my sister's friend's mum's dog's butcher's cousin's doctor's friend said..."


What did he say?
sometimes I see us in a cymbal splash or in the sound of a car crash
#34
Quote by JohnnyGenzale
What did he say?


He said Chomsky is wrong and recursion isn't the determiner of human language
#35
^ Wow, that's pretty cool So if language and conception of ideas distinct, how do you explain the lack of recursion? If they have a linguistic need for referring to the real world in a recursive manner, why is their language lacking that function?
#37
Quote by Kumanji
^ Wow, that's pretty cool So if language and concepts are distinct, how do you explain the lack of recursion? If they have a linguistic need for referring to the real world in a recursive manner, why is their language lacking that function?




You can't really argue that Piraha speakers aren't human though, so as far as their language patterns go it certainly turns ideas about human language on their heads. I don't know why. I should look into it, I guess.
#39
Quote by Mistress_Ibanez


You can't really argue that Piraha speakers aren't human though, so as far as their language patterns go it certainly turns ideas about human language on their heads. I don't know why. I should look into it, I guess.

Whoa, I wasn't trying to exclude them from humanity Linguistics is an area I know little about, but it's bloody fascinating. Also, massive props to the Piraha for f*cking up our comfortable Western-centric ideas of linguistics.

They also have no formal social structure. Primitive communism ftw.
#40
Quote by BenRaah
So does English. Day.


It's not quite the same because 'day' can easily be misunderstood as the interval of light between two successive nights. 'Døgn' literally means 24 hours in Norwegian.
Page 1 of 2