Tuesday, 7 October 2008

"See Spot run."

Papua New Guinea has more than 800 distinct languages, representing more than 10% of all the languages in the world.  Luckily I only have to start with one of them:  Pidgin English or "Tok Pisin."  Pidgin was originally developed from Dutch, German, and English to serve as a trade language for PNG and the surrounding islands.  It is now recognized as one of the official languages of PNG.

I finally began my Pidgin studies in October.  Or perhaps I should say I resumed my studies, as I had picked up a bit of the language on my previous trips to PNG.  My companion is "An Introductory Programmed Course in Tok Pisin" which is a book and cassette tape converted to CD that was put out by the Summer Institute of Linguistics (SIL).  I have learned about 20 words and the Pidgin equivalent of "See Spot run" which in PNG is "See the pig run!"  So far I am having fun learning a new language, and it seems to be coming along reasonably O.K. 

Are there any native speakers out there who are willing to let me practice?

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