The Great Eskimo Hoax & Style, lessons in clarity and grace

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Re: The Great Eskimo Hoax & Style, lessons in clarity and grace

Post by Erik_Kowal » Thu Apr 12, 2012 10:32 am

Sand is not a changing environment for people, which means that it doesn't affect Bedouins' living the same way the snow affects Eskimos living.
You know how I hate to quibble, but the properties of sand are not as uniform as you suggest.

It:

- Varies chemically
- Varies in fertility
- Varies in average grain size
- Varies in abrasiveness
- Varies in moisture content
- Varies in compactness/density
- Varies in colour
- Varies in reflectivity
- Varies in its rate and degree of heat absorption
- Varies in clumping ability/stickiness
- Moves and settles differently, depending partly on the effects of topography, weather and prevailing climate as well as its chemical and physical properties.

I'd say these variations in the properties of sand necessarily have a considerable impact on the way of life of the Bedouins.
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Re: The Great Eskimo Hoax & Style, lessons in clarity and grace

Post by dante » Thu Apr 12, 2012 10:43 am

I'd say these variations in the properties of sand must have a considerable impact on the way of life of the Bedouins.
Not that I didn't say that same in my post Erik, but let me agree with you :) The Bedouins' language must be richer with words for the concepts related to sand than the Eskimo languages are, and sand can be differentiated the way you explained. Only, I wouldn't expect the effect it has on their lexicon is as strong as the impact the snow has on Eskimo languages, as I said, mainly because snow is a precipitation and makes a changing environment to people, while the sand is less changeable, although by no means an assumed, background to Bedouins.
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Re: The Great Eskimo Hoax & Style, lessons in clarity and grace

Post by Edwin F Ashworth » Thu Apr 12, 2012 5:01 pm

Erik_Kowal wrote:. . . the properties of sand are not as uniform as you suggest . . .
I'd say these variations in the properties of sand necessarily have a considerable impact on the way of life of the Bedouins.
Yes, they have over 100 grades of sandpaper (according to that old smoothie, Professor Emery) whilst the Eskimos have still not found an effective way of removing walrust from kayaks.

Those people living near Alum Bay on the Isle of Wight have a special word for the many different types of sand found there: income.
(www.theneedles.co.uk/sand_shop.php)
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Re: The Great Eskimo Hoax & Style, lessons in clarity and grace

Post by Bobinwales » Thu Apr 12, 2012 8:47 pm

Edwin F Ashworth wrote:Eskimos have still not found an effective way of removing walrust from kayaks.
They did think that they had cracked the problem once by lighting a small fire on the forward deck of the kayak. Unfortunately several people were drowned when they lit too much combustible material and the boats themselves caught fire and sunk. This proved once and for all that you cannot have your kayak and heat it.
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Signature: All those years gone to waist!
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Re: The Great Eskimo Hoax & Style, lessons in clarity and grace

Post by Edwin F Ashworth » Fri Apr 13, 2012 7:33 pm

Can you imagine TC hunting whales in his fez!? (For which the Inuit etc peoples have few words.)
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