Friday, March 09, 2007
NATURE OF STANDARD MACEDONIAN LANGUAGE
by Mladen Srbinovski
"Glas", Skopje, No. 23/Dec. 1995
It is forbidden for everybody, who works on and with the language of Macedonia, to do remarks on it. From this restriction, only the people from the scientific institutions, secretly blessed by the official authorities by some strange "criteria", are excluded. The other people, which do not think like the Macedonian linguists and historians, and dare to express openly a disagreement, are under many troubles and dangers. ...
My opinion on the forbidden Macedonian subjects is a humble one, but on the other hand, is completely mine. Similar is my opinion on the nature of the standard Macedonian language, the language on which I am educated and brought up, the language which I use and on which I write. Everybody can reach to similar concept of Macedonian traumas if decides to study the Macedonian problematics - it is not necessary a high intelectual level, only a bit of honesty. But the latter is in lack of Skopjean Macedonists, and because of this lack are our disagreements.
I shall begin with the compulsory education, which was imposed over me, and with the thoughtlessnesses, which I had to absorb until I studied the national problematics.
We meet everyday, read and hear since our childhood, that "Macedonian language is the youngest, but simultaneously the oldest from all Slavic languages." The logical thoughtlessnesses and stupidities which are put into us in the schools are many ones, but the best way is they to be accepted without contradiction and mockery, because otherwise you can be regarded from your teenagers years as a suspicious one. The doubt in the logics of the above sintagma led me to my first collision with my teachers, which gave me troubles. "What for an audacity! How is it possible, that a student cannot understand, that his language is the youngest, but simultaneously the oldest from all Slavic languages because of the specific conditions of its development! Here is nothing for doubt or nonunderstanding, the suspicious is YOU!" - was the reply, which I received.
If you are not satisfied with the similar solutions of the ideological knots, on which the macedonism is based, and you begin to untie them, you will inevitably reach my position, but for the unbinding it is necessary you longly to investigate the patology of the macedonist lie. My humble person will try now to give his explanation about the above mentioned enigma about "the youngest, but simultaneously the oldest from all languages", which on first glance is like the sophism of the priority of the egg or the hen. The attempt to unbind this maybe the most tightened knot of the Gordian unit of macedonism can be regarded as an attempt to understand and explain the nature of the standard Macedonian language. The question is very serious, but as it is given by Skopjean linguists, it is like Gogol literary material from his unwritten satire. But who does know, maybe the Skopjean linguists had (and have) Gogol sence of humour. In this case the (d)effect is like that of Buster Keeton - everybody laughts, but you remain deadly serious.
PART II The historical continuity of the youngest of all Slavic languages goes only 50 years ago - since ASNOM from 1944, and the three language commissions, which created our language. Using those political steps, it was decided one western Macedonian dialect to be written on the reformed Vuk alphabet, and to be raised to the level of literary language.
The grounds for that approach towards the new language are best described by the contributors in the language commissions. Venko Markovski: "You can accept it as a directive, to write with the Vuk alphabet." Milka Balvanlieva-Georgevich: "With the Serbo-Croatian alphabet we shall have Yugoslav alphabet."
The transition over the high artificial fence, and seeking the connection with the older written tradition before the last half of the XX century, denotes the transition from the youngest to the oldest of the Slavic languages. The psychological barrier for separation from the oldest litarary Slavic language is created in us from our bringing up. For my generation, educated after the war and using the youngest literary Slavic language, the oldest literary Slavic language is uninteligible already. Except some linguist somewhere, it is very seldom some of us to read even one sentence from "his" oldest Slavic language. With nowadays spelling, we, the new generations, cannot even write down correctly our names and families. This is the most bright illustration of the continuity between the youngest literary Slavic language and the oldest one. The macedonists care to give us "translated" from the oldest to the youngest of all Slavic languages even texts written in the 20-ies of this century in order they to be inteligible for us. Even the "apostol of macedonism", Misirkov, we can only read transcribed, because as he wrote is ininteligible for us. This artificial division, glottotomy by which from one language were created two ones, was a dexterious political step, and a stage, which was in the past. Insistment in Macedonia our texts to be read in original is regarded as a scandal one. In our past can dare to penetrate only selected persons, which can freely use the "scientific" method - falsification. Glottotomy led to the fact, that the Macedonian language today is in crazy fast motion, and according to Heisenberg principle, because of the excess velocity, the direction of this motion cannot be determined.
The poor written tradition, which is assigned as written heritage to the contemporary Macedonian language, is inheritance written on the western dialects of "prostejshi neknizhoven bolgarski ezik" (K. Pejchinovich) and Macedonian scientists catch on that straw as drunkards on the table. Of course, and that sintagma "prostejshi neknizhoven bolgarski ezik" is falsified for the students, and is represented before them as the Macedonian people speach, predecessor of the Macedonian literary language. In such a case, using political alchemistry, "prostejshi neknizhoven bolgarski ezik" is raised to the rank of the youngest of all Slavic literary languages. The same language, which equally in rights, participated for more than a thousand of years in the developing and the enrichment of the oldest of written Slavic languages - the Bulgarian one.
PART III Until recently, in Greece, there were two official variants of the Greek literary language - katharevusa, or the pure language, and dimotiki - the language of the peasants. Both variants were used in the state, they were equally in rights, and were simultaneously used. If it was possible two official variants of one and the same language to exist in one and the same state, it is even more possible such variants to coexist in two neighbouring countries. I doubt that somebody which is concerned with writing, can oppose against the advantage of existence of two languages, as sprouts of one and the same trunk, but the things are complex in the Balkans. The Macedonian language is above all a political puzzle, and the thesis for mutually enrichment of the languages is a high treason for the Macedonian linguistics. My unprejudices unbinding of the most important knot of the Macedonian problems leads me to the following interpreting of the conceptions of "the oldest and the youngest written Slavic languages" - the katharevusa, used as the literary standard in Bulgaria, is the oldest written Slavic language; and the dimotiki, as literary variant used in Macedonia, is the youngest written Slavic language. It is not to be recommended, or allowed (and until recently it was punishable very strictly) to read anything written on the oldest language, the katharevusa. The reason is very simple - in such a case the most important consequence from the use of both languages ia avoided - the establishment of a point of quiet. We all know from the physics lessons, that it is necessary to point to some body, which is in a condition of quiet, in order to be determined which body is in motion. Without the support of such a point of quiet, we feel ourselves as in an auto-station, when it is not possible for us to say even for a moment, which bus is starting, and which is standing still. For more than 50 years, the artificial condition of quiet is maintained, and none contact is allowed between the youngest and the oldest of the written Slavic languages. The oldest of all written Slavic languages is exactly such a point of quiet for the youngest one. It was enough for me to read one book on the oldest of all written Slavic languages, in order to discover that point of quiet for the youngest Slavic language, which I use every day.
In every state, choosing one dialect as an official language is a political treaty, concensus, a ball of snow, which with its rolling will be increased and enriched. And Macedonian literary language is such a snow ball, created by the force of such political treaty, and put to roll over a steep slope, until Macedonian adepts are asking and amazing for 50 years how is stained and neglected the youngest of the Slavic languages. In its accelerating motion, it gathers from Vuk language everything which is necessary to it - from spelling to lexics, and even tne idioms... And it is logical, having motion in this direction, earlier or later, the youngest of Slavic languages to conclude with its motion, to pacify and merge with Vuk language. The direction of motion of the youngest of all Slavic languages can be easily determined, using Heisenberg principle, the only thing which can be discused is the velocity of this motion. I sincerely hope, that this is not the velocity of the light. And if in XIX c. the big revivalist of Macedonia Konstantin Miladinov expressed the main attitude of the population of Macedonia on dimotiki in one beautiful song "T'ga za jug", in XX c. this attitude ought to be expressed most exactly as "T'ga za Sever". This is the main reason our service dimotiki to be guarded in every case and with all means from its meetings with its katharevusa.
Newsgroups: alt.news.macedonia, soc.culture.greek From: "pavel"
Date: 19 Jan 2006 08:17:21 -0800 Local: Thurs, Jan 19 2006 4:17 pm Subject: Advent of Macedonian Language (Documents)
Enjoy the following:
"Stenografski beleshki od konferentsiite na filoloshkata komisia za ustanovuenje na makedonskata azbuka i makedonskiot literaturen jazik", Skopje, November 27th - December 3rd, 1944.
"Stenographic Memoirs from the Conferences of the Philological Commission for Establishment of the Macedonian Alphabet and Macedonian Literary language"
The advent of the so-called "Macedonian literary language" is an unique in the European linguistic reality, and had not anything common with the normal springing up and development of the languages in the continent. In contrast to all European languages, the so-called "Macedonian literary language" is created from a group of people: 1) on some date, not very far before; 2) in some place; 3) with a decree.
On August 2nd, 1944, in the monastery St Prohor Pchinski, on the first meeting of ASNOM (Anti-fascist Assembly for People Liberation of Macedonia), a decree for "sluzhben" language, which "vleguva vednaga vo sila" (immediately is applyed), was announced. Some months later - again administratively - this language is up-invented, and sanctioned with voting of 10 teachers, one poet, and one politician - ASNOM representative, on the conference in the Skopje gradski odbor (city hall) in the period November 27th - December 3rd, 1944. (Attending: Risto Prodanov, Risto Zografski, Dr Georche Shoptrajan, Dare Dzhambaz, Vasil Iliev, Dr Mihail Petrushevski, Krume Toshev, Mirko Pavlov, Gjorge Kiselinov, Blazho Koneski, Dr Milka Balvanlieva - all teachers, Venko Markovski - a poet, Epaminonda Popandonov (from ASNOM). - the names are written according the protocol from November 27th, 1944. Stenographer: J. Kostevski.)
The documents of the stenographers protocols from the inventive meetings, which took less than a week in the building of Skopski odbor, can show the absurdity of the advent of this language, and can give an explanation, why this language practically is not spoken from anyone in the Republic of Macedonia, including from its "creators". Here we have in mind especially the pronunciation of the prominent codificator of Skopska norm, Bl. Koneski, author of the many times issued "Gramatika na makedonskiot literaturen jazik", Skopje, 1952, which is full with many deviations from the created by him rules. We shall give, with a minimum commentary, the typical moments of creating the "new language", which is on the base of the south-western Bulgarian speeches in Macedonia.
Now enjoy the discussions:
1. Self-acknowledgement, that the decisions of the commission are not scientific: "It will be good, if we can reconcile the views, to find something mild, it can be not scientific, but practical, and in moderation. Kiril also had a hard time. (here St Constantine Cyril is in mind!) Let we also try hardly, without hurry." - Krume Tosheski, p. 35.
2. Fast inventing of the language: "We have not time to wait this language to be made. We are in fast need to have a literary language, and have no time, and cannot wait this language to be made from poets, bookmen and journalists. In France, as a literary language, Paris dialect is taken, in Russia - Moscow dialect, in Serbia - Hertsegovina dialect. From these dialects, after that, continuously a literary language has developed. But, as I have said, we have not time to wait some our dialect to be developed into literary language." - Gjorge Kiselinov, p. 3.
3. The teachers of the new-created language will be also low-literate: "Our teachers will be with fifth-sixth grade. Teaching with low-qualified teachers will be very difficult." - Krume Tosheski, p. 34.
4. The artificial rules will be never acquired nor by pupils, nor by the elderly people: "Here, the word is for the paedagogics and for the pupils. But it is all the same also for the elderly people. These people will never learn the rules." - Risto Prodanov, p. 30.
5. Falsifying the language history, in order falsifying the reality to be acquitted - (here a long pseudo-study of Gjorge Kiselinov is omitted. Grand-grand-childrens of Alexander of Macedon, etc.)
6. Acknowledgement, that the revivalists in Macedonia wrote by the canons of Bulgarian language: "Konstantin Miladinov called the dialect of his songs struzhko-resenski. But it is nor Struga dialect, nor Resen dialect. One of the main characteristics of our Macedonian language is the stress. In our language the stress is on the third syllable from the end of the word. If we take his poem (of K. Miladinov) "T'ga za jug", it is melodical only if it is pronunciated with Bulgarian stress. Here it is! (Recites.) But if we recite it with the typical Macedonian stress, on the third syllable from the end of the word, what we shall obtain? (Recites.) You see, that there is not rhythm." - Venko Markovski, p. 15.
7. The commission is also engaged in futurology: "In the not-near future, in the edge of the capitalism and the imperialism, a common Slavic language will be developed, not only common Yugoslavian language. We do not know in which direction it will be developed, but most probably this will be the Russian language, which gave so much words to the Germans and the Americans in technics." - Dare Dzhambaz, p. 40-41.
8. If the common Yugoslavian language will be not developed, than a try with the Russian can be made: "Our comrade said, that we must have in mind an aspiration towards a common Yugoslavian language.
... But you can have in mind, that a common Yugoslavian language is an illusion, and cannot be made. Why? Because the Serbs and Bulgarians have their literature ... ... If we want to create a common Yugoslavian language, than they ought to refuse from their literature, and from their literary language, and to accept the new one. But this will never happen. We, Macedonians, which have not until now our literature, and our common literary language, would not refuse from the ours, and the Serbs and the Bulgarians would not surely refuse also. But if we cannot made a common Yugoslavian language, than we can made a common Slavic language, and it will be the Russian language, which can be imposed with the space and the width of the Russian word." - Gjorgi Kiselinov, p. 38.
Remark: All citations are taken from "Stenografski beleshki od konferentsiite na filoloshkata komisia za ustanovuenje na makedonskata azbuka i makedonskiot literaturen jazik", Skopje November 27th - December 3rd, 1944.