Patrick Chew wrote:
> >Patrick Chew wrote
> > > "Sign linguists" are still linguists... the precedent set for phone/phoneme
> > > for spoken languages is still analogically applicable to signed languages,
> > > right? Even within signed languages, the "phonetic"/contextual variations
> > > of idealized/citation forms/shapes/"phonemes" mimic what we observe in
> > > spoken languages - why would conceptual distinctions (read: the Wheel) need
> > > to be re-invented?
> >At 11:09 PM 12/12/2003, Peter Daniels wrote:
> >That was what I was presuming as too obvious to need to be stated, and
> >Michael seemed to presume was excluded.
> If I recall correctly, it started with your assertion that writing systems
> *had to be* phonetic-based to be considered writing systems, and the
> example(s) given included SignWriting.
> I'm actually still curious and needing clarification.
> Are you (Mr. Peter Daniels) making the statement that for a set of "glyphs"
> to be considered a writing system, the whole must be phonetic based? or
> that it must at least contain some portion which has base in the phonetics
> of the relevant spoken language?
> pardon my grasp of the situation,
> -Patrick

You understood the "mutatis mutandis" part, didn't you? That means, "for
oral languages, the basis is sound units; for sign languages, the basis
is sight units," in each case the units resulting from an analysis of
the language (see e.g. M. O'Connor in Fs. Freedman, ref. in WWS).

For the application of the concept to Chinese (the locus where it's most
likely to raise incredulity), see DeFrancis, *The Chinese Language: Fact
and Fantasy* (1985) and *Visible Speech* (1989) (though he makes some
mistakes about non-East Asian languages/scripts).

Because it's impossible to write at least some parts of the speech
stream if you don't have a phonologically based notation.
Peter T. Daniels grammatim@...