Two Comments

The views expressed here are the author's. They do not reflect those of CUSO International.
There is a fundraising element associated with my work in Burma. Please click HERE for a link to my fundraising page.

Saturday, 7 February 2015

Incomprehensible Sound

I spend a lot of time inside incomprehensible sound.  My co-workers chat and make jokes on the way home in the office van.  All kinds of words are shared while I sit there in my linguistic deepfreeze.   One thing that penetrates the curtain of incomprehension is the light tone of the conversation, interspersed with laughter and guffaws.  No surly folks in my commuter van.

One unexpected side benefit of my cocoon of incomprehension is my isolation from commercial messages.  An invocation to buy a lottery ticket has roughly the same value as the bus attendant’s destinations rap.  As yet, the visual commercial messages are muted in Yangon and mostly absent outside of the big city. Religious messages have a slightly different tonal value.  They depend more on ritualized language and ritual sounds differently than commerce:  more repetitive, certainly, but also more plaintive.

1 comment:

  1. What a lonely, introspective world we would live in had we not developed language as a way of communication. All the best in your final days on this assignment. Looking forward to hearing more about it in person once you return.