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Ezra Pound discussion list of the University of Maine <[log in to unmask]>
Daniel Pearlman <[log in to unmask]>
Wed, 9 Dec 1998 13:47:36 -0500
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Ezra Pound discussion list of the University of Maine <[log in to unmask]>
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Three cheers for Alex!
I have always felt that any soi-disant "educated" American
who does not have a functional, speaking knowledge of at
least one foreign language is a provincial, a country bumpkin--and
in the international sphere, think of how much and often
this country has been mis-served by political-appointee
ambassadors who don't have a clue of what's going on
around them! ... I am especially disappointed to see, over
the past so-many years, how our grad students in literature,
as a population, have grown monolingual--and that's been
to the detriment of their native English as well.
==Dan Pearlman
At 08:42 AM 12/9/98 +0100, you wrote:
>A bit strange, Peter Bi, to join the discussion about EP & foreign
languges with
>a smart "who cares?". No?
>Admitted: a German looks at these things from a SLIGHTLY different angle,
>while the majority of Americans still seems to think that the wide world
>English anyway & that the US is the center of everything anyway [which, in a
>very personal sense, keeps being true for me, and I like this thought, having
>grown up in a distinctly pro-American early post-war West-Berlin], we here in
>Europe usually are brought up with a healthy sense for what world citizenship
>really means & that the 1st step towards multi-cultural & international
>understanding is learning languages. I. e. McDonald's & Coke is NOT world
>citizenship. I cdn't say that having learned other languages than just my
>one did me any harm. Through Pound I came to study Chinese history,
culture, &
>language at the university. Through Pound I came to look into Italian and
>Provencal languages more closely. And re-activated my "school French". Etc
>There cd be found LOADS of Pound quotes which preach the necessity of
>foreign languages. Pound, thus wd be the last to say "who cares". He was
the one
>who incessantly declared war on ignorance.
>I'm very sorry, Peter Bi. But yr "who cares" in this context - EP,
languages &c
>- is pure cynicism. An inexcusable misinterpretation of Poundian thinking.
>Pound wd have found other words for this, and far less polite ones.
Dan Pearlman                    Office: Department of English
102 Blackstone Blvd. #5                 University of Rhode Island
Providence, RI 02906                    Kingston, RI 02881
Tel.: 401 453-3027                      Tel.: 401 874-4659
email: [log in to unmask]            Fax:  401 874-2580