Talk:ISO 639 macrolanguage

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Languages (Rated Start-class)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Languages, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of standardized, informative and easy-to-use resources about languages on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
Start-Class article Start  This article has been rated as Start-Class on the project's quality scale.
 ???  This article has not yet received a rating on the project's importance scale.

Merge proposal[edit]

There are way to many individual pages for ISO-639 macrolanguages that are destined to be stubs. I propose that they be merged to this page and the ISO 639 macrolanguage category deleted. Ƶ§œš¹ [aɪm ˈfɻɛ̃ⁿdˡi] 20:16, 16 September 2007 (UTC)

I would agree to a merger of all the stubby individual ISO-639 macrolanguage pages to here, provided:
  1. we get rid of the table and replace each of the table line item into a section
  2. incorporate all information about each the macrolanguages and their quirks that may already be in the current individual pages (if any)
  3. the page retains a cohesive look from section to section
CJLippert 21:37, 16 September 2007 (UTC)
Sounds good to me. Ƶ§œš¹ [aɪm ˈfɻɛ̃ⁿdˡi] 22:09, 16 September 2007 (UTC)
Has my support as well. — Zerida 00:27, 17 September 2007 (UTC)
OK, they're merged with a basic boiler-plate language for each and every section, unless there was something there in the original stub page, then the boiler-plate language was modified just a bit to carry whatever that was in the stub page to here. I'll let someone else develop rest of the article from here on. CJLippert 22:52, 17 September 2007 (UTC)
I'm impressed, and releaved that someone else did what I proposed. Thanks a lot, CJLippert! 00:19, 18 September 2007 (UTC)

ISO 639-2/B and ISO 639-2/T[edit]

The mention of “elements that have two ISO 639-2 codes“ (fas, msa, sqi, zho) in section Types of macrolanguages seems misleading: those four (macro)languages have two ISO 639-2 code elements because there are two sets of codes in ISO 639-2, bibliographic codes (ISO 639-2/B) and terminology codes (ISO 639-2/T). Most codes are the same in both sets, but some differ, as the four aforementioned ones, but this has nothing to do with their status as macrolanguages. Other languages have different codes in ISO 639-2/B and ISO 639-2/T that are not macrolanguages in ISO 639-3 (e.g., Armenian is arm/hye, Basque is baq/eus, Czech is cze/ces, etc.). Arthur (talk) 11:00, 17 June 2010 (UTC)

Agree, so I removed that line. The fact that these four macrolanguages happen to be ISO 639-2/T codes, and thus also correspond to 639-2/B codes, is not relevant to their status as macrolanguages. I didn't attempt to reclassify these four codes into other types, because the categories apparently overlap; before they added up to 62, now to 58, but the first paragraph says there are 56 total. Actually, I'm not sure how helpful that categorization is, and it smacks of WP:OR, but I'll leave it to someone else to decide whether to eliminate the list entirely. AlbertBickford (talk) 21:53, 21 January 2015 (UTC)

Hindi languages[edit]

Isn't Hindi in the inclusive sense of Hindi language (Hindi belt) a macrolanguage? LADave (talk) 19:13, 17 January 2014 (UTC)

Hindi might be considered a candidate to be classified as a macrolanguage in ISO 639. However, to be precise, the term "macrolanguage" is really only meaningful relative to the standard. In 639-3, Hindi is classified as an individual language, not a macrolanguage. The reason, I assume (I could be wrong), is that there are no other individual languages in the standard that are ever considered to be dialects of Hindi. Whether that is the right way to handle Hindi is open for debate, and if you disagree, you always have the option of submitting a change request to ISO 639-3. But to be successful, you'll first have to demonstrate that there are at least two individual speech varieties that are under some circumstances considered to be separate languages and under other circumstances considered to be dialects of Hindi. That may require also making proposals to introduce those other individual languages into the standard. This, I suspect, would require a fair bit of work. Also, I believe the reason the concept of "macrolanguage" was introduced in ISO 639-3 was to maintain compatibility with ISO 639-2; I suspect there may be reluctance to add many more macrolanguages to the standard. AlbertBickford (talk) 21:37, 21 January 2015 (UTC)

Formatting glitch in section "List of macrolanguages and the individual languages"[edit]

There is a formatting problem in the section "List of macrolanguages and the individual languages". All the numbered lists of languages under each macrolanguage do not appear on the same line as the number. This appears to be because of the use of a template to cite the individual language code. Since I don't understand how the template works, I don't know what is causing this. Can it be fixed? AlbertBickford (talk) 21:22, 21 January 2015 (UTC)

What is a macrolanguage?[edit]

This article is all technical jargon. Is it possible to define "macrolanguage" in 25 words or less for the general reader? Kotabatubara (talk) 17:48, 23 August 2015 (UTC)

nontechnical article needed[edit]

I agree with above. This page describes a very technical definition of the word "macrolanguage." A second article is needed describing macrolanguages in the general (nontechnical) sense. Nicole Sharp (talk) 21:40, 12 October 2015 (UTC)

Although the term was coined - or at least prominently adopted - for a particular purpose, I believe that its use is becoming wider and more generic. Hence at some point either moving this article to a more generic title (e.g., Macrolanguage or Macrolanguage (linguistics)), with a discussion of wider use prefacing the section on ISO 639-3 usage, or creating a new article should be discussed. The concept of "macrolanguage" as something that groups closely related and (largely or mostly) mutually intelligible languages is coming into wider use, probably because it is a concept otherwise missing. (See for example Dr. Elizabeth Pyatt's blog post a few years ago.) Arguably the refined splitting of languages has shifted the meaning of "language" to what might have previously been called "dialect" leaving a conceptual space for the connection among mutually intelligible languages. There is no other term than "macrolanguage" other than constructs like "neighbor language" to describe the sociolinguistic reality of say Kinyarwanda and Kirundi (of Rwanda and Burundi, respectively) which are practically the same, but for which there is no unifying ISO 639 code to give them the technical "macrolanguage" title.--A12n (talk) 03:08, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
See also the earlier quotes for macrolanguage, etymology 2, definition 1 on Wiktionary.--A12n (talk) 03:24, 8 November 2015 (UTC)