Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Darwin'd be Interested

       Here's a different thought about evolution -- last night at a meeting of the HLA (Hearing Loss Association, which turns out to be a particularly friendly cohesive group) the speaker showed a world map of languages based on whether they emphasized vowels or consonants.  Colors shading down to lots of blue (vowels) in the South Pacific, in northern South America, all around the equator except in Africa.  
      All of us in the Hearing Loss Gang know it's consonants that are the more difficult to distinguish, right? (Peter Rabbit Cedar Rapids), and the theory is that when people called to each other across thick jungles, they were more likely to use vowels.  Persuasive when one thinks of Hawaii, which has, come to think of it, more vowels than consonants in its very name.
What would Darwin say?
        It'd be nice to reproduce that colorful map for you but I'm not having any luck.  You may want to see for yourselves at  Meanwhile, just to dress up this posting, here's a bit of Hawaii.


  1. But what about Finland? Many many vowels there...... guess it is an outlier! CMS

  2. CMS -- I looked at that map again and you're right -- where Finland is (I think) there's a medium blue dot -- quite a few vowels.