João Paulo Monteiro jpmonteiro at
Fri Nov 26 16:48:35 MST 1999

Carlos Eduardo Rebello wrote:

> All that has been done on the issue are the misguided efforts to create
> an artificial unified ortograph, which I think absolutely wrong, most of
> the remaining differences in ortograph, after the end of the old
> "etimologycal" spelling ("phosphoro", "sabbado", "wagão") being mostly
> actual differences in pronounciation.

Well, is spite of its flaws, I am in favor of the orthographic accord. Or at
least of some accord on unification, perhaps with a larger participation of
the african countries. It would permit the creation of an enlarged lusophone
market of publishing. This could open a broader window to the world for the
portuguese speaking countries, particularly the weaker ones.

The accord has generated much resistance here in Portugal, where orthography
is more archaic and ethimological (with its precious mute consonants). A
good deal of it was motivated by protectionist fears of the publishers, with
many conservative noises expressed by a group of notables on the world of
letters and the artificial orchestration of chauvinist feelings on "public
opinion". After years of work in the drafting of the accord, the issue is
now pending ratification since 1991 (?!...).

Kemal Ataturk, who wanted badly to adapt turkish language to the latin
alphabet, was so outraged with the delays and vagaries of the scientific
committees in charge of the reform that he is said to have called the matter
upon himself and resolved it in a night of work.

João Paulo Monteiro

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