This is precisely the function of the media in a capitalist society. The Chinese media is not like this because, duh, China is not a capitalist country! Nor is the Iranian media because Iran is not a capitalist country. In fact, Iran is almost something like “Islamic Communism.” I’m not wild about Ayatollah Khomeini, but he did have a strong social justice streak.
The Revolution was populist, pro-independence, and anti-imperialist. Iran is almost based on a Muslim version of Liberation Theology or “the preferential option of the poor.” The social safety net is huge in Iran. Also, much of the economy is run by the state. It’s actually run by religious charities, often with ties to the military and the IRGC. I believe these religious charities do not operate at a profit. Small businesses are not bothered at all, as in all Muslim countries. I was reading Ayatollah Khameini’s tweets for a while on Twitter, and I could have been reading Che Guevara. Basically the same message.
Islam is just not friendly to neoliberal economics or radical individualism. It is a very collectivist religion in a very collectivist society.
Neoliberalism hasn’t caught on much of anywhere in the Muslim world other than Indonesia and the Southern Philippines, and they had to murder 1 million Communists in cold blood to get there in Indonesia and the Moros have always rejected Catholic rule in both a political and economic sense. it is notable that the Maoist NPA are also huge in Mindanao, home of the Moros.
Pakistan, too, has inherited the selfish economics and even feudalism in land tenure straight from Indian Hinduism. They even have caste, which would be considered an aberration in any decent Muslim society.
All of the Arab countries are basically socialist at least in name, and that was never a hard sell there. It’s true that 100 years ago, the Arab lands were mostly feudal in nature, with big landowners and peasants in debt bondage. They rich had co-opted the religious authorities like they always do, and the mullahs preached that Islamic feudalism was right and proper because the Prophet had said, “It is normal that some are rich and some are poor.” But it was always a hard sell, and it had a very weak foundation.
After independence, socialism was instituted in most if not all Arab countries at least in name. In particular, huge land reforms were done in Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Yemen, Libya, and Palestine. I assume something like that was done in Algeria too. It was a very easy sell, and everyone went along with it without a hitch. The mullahs quickly changed from support for feudalism to support for socialism.
Hamas rules Gaza and I was shocked at how huge the social safety net is. The many religious charities run the safety net, which is distributed under the rubric of Islam. This is done instead of the state doling it out.
Mohammad himself didn’t have much to say about economics, but he wasn’t a neoliberal capitalist or a feudalist.
In Christian societies, the rich have utter contempt and hatred for the poor, who they regard as little more than human garbage. If you want to see this philosophy in action, look at the classism in Latin America. As all Muslims are part of the umma, and hence, as all are brothers and sisters, it is simply unconscionable that wealthy Muslims would be able to openly hate poor Muslims. You simply cannot treat your fellow Muslims like that. It’s not officially haram but it might as well be.
European Style Fascism in the Middle East
It is instructive that the only place in the Arab world where neoliberal economics and in particular Libertarianism took hold was in Lebanon, and even there, it was only among Catholic Maronites. Most Arab Christians look east to Antioch (and before that, Constantinople) to the Eastern Orthodox church, which is really just the eastern wing of Catholicism.
The Maronites, though, deride Antioch and instead look to Rome. They see themselves as European people instead of Arabs. Many deny that they are Arabs and instead refer to themselves as “Phoenicians.” It is interesting that the only real classical fascism in the Arab World took hold in the Lebanese Maronites, where the Gameyels imported it from Europe in the 1930’s.
The Jews of Israel also developed a very European form of fascism starting with Jabotinsky and his book The Iron Wall in 1921. This man was an open fascist. He is considered to be the spiritual father of the Likud Party. During the 1940’s, the armed Jewish rebels split into leftwingers who were almost Communists and rightwingers who were more or less fascists.
The Kahanists today look a lot like a European fascist party. And in fact, the entire Israeli rightwing around Likud, etc. looks pretty fascist in a European sense. So Israeli Jews are really Jewish fascists or fascist Jews. It has never been an easy ride for liberal and secular US Jews to support the Orthodox religious fanatics and rightwingers if not out and out fascists in the Likud, etc. in Israel. This was always completely unstable, and after that latest war, it’s finally starting to fall apart. But the seeds of destruction were already there.
But note that the Jews of Israel very much look to the West and see themselves as Europeans (which many are for all intents and purposes). They align themselves with the Judeo-Christian European society that many of them came from.
Half of Israeli Jews are Mizrachi Jews from the Arab World, and they have always had a Judeo-Islamic culture. However, when they moved to Israel, this was dismantled by perhaps not entirely. They rejected it due to the association of Arabs and Islam with the enemy, which is correct.
Economics and Catholicism
This radical classism and near-feudalism in Latin America was supported by the Catholic Church, which was always a very rightwing institution because they were always in bed with the rich. There were always Left splits in Catholicism like Dorothy Day and The Catholic Worker. The Catholic clergy in the US has tended to be quite leftwing.
There is a long history of “Catholic Communism” in the Philippines, Czechoslovakia, Spain, Portugal, Ireland, the Basque Country, France, Italy, Haiti, Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Colombia, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador, Chile, Cuba, Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, Argentina, and Uruguay. The IRA was a leftwing Catholic armed group. A lot of priests were caught hiding IRA cadre. So was the ETA in the Basque Country of Spain.
Catholic Leftism never caught on in Poland and Lithuania due to hatred of Russia and the USSR. Nevertheless, both are more or less socialist countries.
Even today there is an active “Catholic Communist” movement in Cuba that is very lively. In Honduras and Colombia, Catholic priests actually led guerrilla bands. Liberation Theoloy is something like “Jesus Christ with an AK-47.” The Leftist who recently took power in Paraguay was a former Catholic priest.
The ELN was founded by a priest, Camilo Torres, and many Catholic clergy even supported the Shining Path! Edith Lagos, a 20 year old woman, was the leader of a very early Shining Path column in Peru. She was killed in 1980 and the entire town of Ayacucho, 30,0000 people, came out for her funeral which was held at midnight. The lines of mourners stretched through the whole city. All of the priests in town blessed her body, and she was given a proper Catholic funeral.
I believe that the PT or Workers Party of Brazil has a large Liberation Theology component. The Catholic clergy had an excellent relationship with the FARC in Colombia. Of course, the Catholic clergy played a big role in Venezeula, and Hugo Chavez himself was a practicing Catholic. The FMLN Salvadoran rebels were explicitly Catholic, as were the Sandinistas in Nicaragua. One of the Sandinists’ top leaders, Tomas Borge, was a Catholic priest. Jean-Paul Aristide in Haiti was a Catholic priest. Catholic believers are now allowed to join the Communist Party in Cuba, and near the end of his life, Fidel Castro said he was a “cultural Catholic.”
After Vatican 2 and Liberation Theology began to spread out via the seminal documents written by Gustavo Gutierrez in Brazil, “A Theology of Liberation,” otherwise known as “exercising the preferential option for the poor,” it began to spread in Latin America. It started with local priests and especially Catholic lay workers in impoverished areas and then slowly spread. Even today, Catholic layworkers and especially seminaries are very leftwing, while the Vatican itself is not. A lot of seminaries are hotbeds of homosexuality, and the gay priests and lay workers are quite open about it. It is estimated that 15% of Catholic priests are gay.
The 10% figure is the biggest gay IP lie of them all, and they’ve gotten most people to believe in it. It goes back to the deeply flawed Kinsey study, and their gay percentages have never been found by any other study.
The Kinsey study also found that 37% of all men had had at least one homosexual experience. Nothing close to this has been found by any other study although two studies did find that 25% of men had engaged in homosexual behavior at least once.
The first finding was from a Playboy study in 1974. One study found that the 25% figure was for age 18, so that’s how many boys did gay stuff in adolescence. But a lot of boys do gay bullshit in adolescence (circle jerks) and almost all of them are not gay at all. Other studies do not find anywhere close to that figure, but they may not be doing the methodology right.
And even the Kinsey study did not find 10% of all people were gay. They found that for men, but those were just men who had lived a gay lifestyle for three or more years. Men who had been predominantly gay their whole lives was once again something like 3%, which is exactly what we get nowadays.
How many Americans are gay? 2%.
3% of men are gay or bisexual.
1% of women are lesbians.
Source: Every study ever.
Some recent studies are showing higher numbers for these generations, Gen Z and the Millennials. Among British males 18-30, 6% are gay. Over 50% self-identify as “non-heterosexual” whatever the Hell that is. But those two cohorts are part of what I call Generation Fag. Sorry, readers in these cohorts, I am not calling you guys faggots ha ha. Instead I am saying that there is a lot more male homosexuality in your generations. But still almost all of your generations are straight.
So the rate of gay men and men who self-ID as non-straight and those who identify as gay is clearly rising among these new generations. In my generation, 2% of men are gay, and in these younger cohorts, 6% of men are gay. So is the rate really going up, or are more just coming out of the closet?
It’s a chicken or egg problem, and it’s almost impossible to figure out the answer because Gay IP has set up a trap door in the question. According to Gay IP, every time rates of homosexuality go up, it is because more gays are coming out of the closet. If rates of homosexuality decline, that is because more of them are going back in the closet!
Obviously this crazy argument is not correct. Actually it’s even worse than that. It’s not even wrong! Instead it’s completely non-falsifiable like so many stupid IP arguments, so it’s automatically garbage theory.
If the rate is really on the rise, this would seem to put a kibosh in the idea that almost all gay men are biologically gay. How would a biological factor double in such a short period of time? I don’t think it can. Certainly a genetic factor cannot increase in that period of time.
The theory is that male homosexuality (and a lot of lesbianism and male transsexualism) is a developmental disorder, caused by hormonal fluctuations in the mother while the fetus is in the womb.
I swear I read this a while ago, but now I can’t find not can I find a reference to this anywhere, but I read on the Net years back that when Czechoslovakia left Communism and broke up, the new Czech Republic instituted strict monitoring of women’s hormonal levels in the womb. Where the level was off, it was leveled out somehow or other.
The rate of male homosexuality and male transsexualism among the children so monitored nearly collapsed over the course of time when they were doing this. If this is true, it is very interesting a possible cure for homosexuality and transsexualism or a way to stop homosexuality and transsexualism from developing in the first place.
Now perhaps I am remembering this statement I read incorrectly. I’ve done so before with other things. I’m sure about such and such a fact as I have read it somewhere, but when I go back and check, I am remembering it wrong and it didn’t say that at all. That’s the Rashomon Effect.
Three studies in the West found that 12-20% (16%) of young women, 18-30, are bisexual. So the rate of bisexuality in young women is clearly rising dramatically. Obviously they weren’t all “born that way.”
So we can state for certain that many bisexual women do not appear to have been born that way at all but instead are adopting this identity as part of a fad. Young women are mostly engaging in lesbian sex to turn on men because men like to see in as it turns them on. Lesbians despise these bisexuals and say they are fake. They call them “hard-on lesbians.” It’s obviously socially constructed behavior, and a lot of it is being copied out of porn.
Anecdotally, I am seeing a lot more male bisexuality these days. Surveys are not picking it up but maybe they are not doing the surveys correctly. I run into stories about young men doing this all the time, and I have met a number of men who are doing this. Basically all of these men would have just been straight like you, me or any of my male readers in any prior era.
They’re just engaging in gay sex as part of a fad or just for shits and giggles. They’re doing it simply for recreation because they are perverts. I don’t like this nonsense because unlike biological gays who have no choice, these men could perfectly well choose not to do this.
As far as my male readers go, I discourage it. But you guys can do whatever you want with your dicks. I’m no moralfag and I’m kind of a scum myself, so I shouldn’t judge. So just don’t tell me about if you like to put dicks in your mouth, please.
We have had a few conservatives posting here in the past few days. These are US-style conservatives, which are the worst kind of all. US-style conservatives are absolutely banned from posting here in any way, shape or form.
Conservatism means different things in different countries, so conservatives from much of the rest of the world (except Latin America and the UK) can continue to post. Even Canadian conservatives can continue to post, as I do not mind them. It’s not conservatism itself that is so awful. Almost every country on Earth has people who call themselves conservatives, and there are conservative parties in almost every country on Earth. But being a conservative just about anywhere outside of the Americas is more or less an acceptable position for me. I probably won’t like their politics much, but I could at least look at them and say that this is an opposition I could live with.
US conservatives and their brethren in the UK, Latin America, the Philippines, Nepal and and Indonesia are quite a different beast.
I have to think hard about conservatives in Eastern Europe, especially Estonia, Latvia and the Czech Republic. These fools had such a bad experience with Communism that they went 180 degrees in the other direction. I would have to see the positions of these conservative parties in those countries to see whether they would be OK or not.
Just to give you an example, Vladimir Putin is considered to be a right-winger, and his party United Russia advocates a politics called Russian Conservatism. Looking at the party’s platform, this is not only a conservatism that I could live with but one I might even vote for!
Conservatives in South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, Burma, Thailand, Cambodia, and most other places in Asia are acceptable. The conservatives in the Stans, Georgia, Ukraine, and Armenia can be rather awful, particularly in the nationalist sense, but I will not ban them.
I dislike Indian conservatives, but I will not ban them.
Conservatives from the Muslim World are all acceptable. In the Muslim World, conservatism just means religious and sometimes nationalist. I can live with that. Even the ones in Iran are orders of magnitude better than the US type.
Conservatives in the Arab World are acceptable. They are mostly just religious people.
Turkish conservatives are awful, but I will not ban them. They are just religious and a particularly awful type of nationalist.
African conservatives are OK.
Conservatives in Ireland, France, Spain, Portugal, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Italy, Switzerland, Italy, the Balkans, Bulgaria, Greece, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, and Romania are sometimes good, sometimes pretty bad, but they are all acceptable here. Conservatism in Europe mostly means nationalism. I am actually rather fond of the conservative running Hungary, Orban. LePen conservatives leave something to be desired, but they are acceptable. They’re mostly just nationalists. Hell, I might even vote for Marine LePen! If it was down to LePen versus Macron, I would absolutely support LePen!
Conservatives from Indonesia, Nepal and Philippines are not OK. These are an “everything for the rich elite, nothing for anybody else” type of conservative. Some of them even hide under the labels of Socialist or even Communist. The word conservative has no real inherent meaning. It means whatever people say it means.
Anyway, the conservatives in the US are pure garbage and recently they have become out and out fascists after moving in that direction for a long time. And a particularly horrible type of fascist at that, a Latin American/Filipino/Indonesian style fascist. I will not allow any US conservatives to post on this board. You all are lucky I even let you lurk here. That’s an idle threat as I can’t ban lurkers, but if they all stopped lurking, I would not mind frankly.
You all really ought to go back to the gutters you crawled out of.
PS This especially applies to Libertarians, the very worst of all the US conservative vermin. We shoot Libertarians on sight here, so you better watch out. *This applies only to economic conservatives. If you are not an economic conservative, and your conservatism is only of the social variety or you are only conservative on race, religion, guns, law and order, respect for tradition, American nationalism, the military, gender, sexual orientation or gender identity issues, you can stay. I’m not crazy about some social conservatives, but I can live with them. I will probably even let patriotards post as long as they are not economic conservatives. I am an American nationalist myself. I just don’t like patriotards. Of course, I very much dislike and even hate the country as it is right now, but I sure don’t want to make it worse! I have to live here too you now, and it might as well be as pleasant as possible as long I stay here. I want what’s best for my country. I don’t want to harm this country or screw it over. That will be bad for me! And believe it or not, most US patriotards do not want what is best for the country! I have dreams of a greater and better America. It’s not impossible, but we will have to undergo some serious cultural changes. One of the reasons I am so against illegal immigration is because it is ruining my country and making this place even worse. Also illegal immigration is terrible for US workers and I am for the workers. I am against H-1B visas for the same reason – they are wrecking my country. IT workers are workers too, so they are my comrades. I want what is best for America and American workers. I cannot live with economic conservatives. I like cancer way more than I like US conservatives. Cancer is much more decent and respectable.
Pretty amazing stuff. Keep in mind that they were like this before they even started killing lots of people. And during this period, they were wildly popular, not only in Germany but also in other parts of Europe, especially in Eastern Europe.
January 30, 1933 – Adolf Hitler is appointed Chancellor of Germany a nation with a Jewish population of 566,000.
February 22, 1933 – 40,000 SA and SS men are sworn in as auxiliary police.
February 27, 1933 – Nazis burn Reichstag building to create crisis atmosphere.
February 28, 1933 – Emergency powers granted to Hitler as a result of the Reichstag fire.
March 22, 1933 – Nazis open Dachau concentration camp near Munich, to be followed by Buchenwald near Weimar in central Germany, Sachsenhausen near Berlin in northern Germany, and Ravensbrück for women.
March 24, 1933 – German Parliament passes Enabling Act giving Hitler dictatorial powers.
April 1, 1933 – Nazis stage boycott of Jewish shops and businesses.
April 11, 1933 – Nazis issue a Decree defining a non-Aryan as “anyone descended from non-Aryan, especially Jewish, parents or grandparents. One parent or grandparent classifies the descendant as non-Aryan…especially if one parent or grandparent was of the Jewish faith.”
April 26, 1933 – The Gestapo is born, created by Hermann Göring in the German state of Prussia.
May 10, 1933 – Burning of books in Berlin and throughout Germany.
July 14, 1933 – Nazi Party is declared the only legal party in Germany; Also, Nazis pass law to strip Jewish immigrants from Poland of their German citizenship.
In July – Nazis pass law allowing for forced sterilization of those found by a Hereditary Health Court to have genetic defects.
In September – Nazis establish Reich Chamber of Culture, then exclude Jews from the Arts.
September 29, 1933 – Nazis prohibit Jews from owning land.
October 4, 1933 – Jews are prohibited from being newspaper editors.
November 24, 1933 – Nazis pass a Law against Habitual and Dangerous Criminals, which allows beggars, the homeless, alcoholics and the unemployed to be sent to concentration camps.
January 24, 1934 – Jews are banned from the German Labor Front.
May 17, 1934 – Jews not allowed national health insurance.
June 30, 1934 – The Night of Long Knives occurs as Hitler, Göring and Himmler conduct a purge of the SA (storm trooper) leadership.
July 20, 1934 – The SS (Schutzstaffel) is made an independent organization from the SA.
July 22, 1934 – Jews are prohibited from getting legal qualifications.
August 2, 1934 – German President von Hindenburg dies. Hitler becomes Führer.
August 19, 1934 – Hitler receives a 90 percent ‘Yes’ vote from German voters approving his new powers.
May 21, 1935 – Nazis ban Jews from serving in the military.
June 26, 1935 – Nazis pass law allowing forced abortions on women to prevent them from passing on hereditary diseases.
August 6, 1935 – Nazis force Jewish performers/artists to join Jewish Cultural Unions.
September 15, 1935 – Nuremberg Race Laws against Jews decreed.
February 10, 1936 – The German Gestapo is placed above the law.
In March – SS Deathshead division is established to guard concentration camps.
March 7, 1936 – Nazis occupy the Rhineland.
June 17, 1936 – Heinrich Himmler is appointed chief of the German Police.
August 1, 1936 – Olympic Games begin in Berlin. Hitler and top Nazis seek to gain legitimacy through favorable public opinion from foreign visitors and thus temporarily refrain from actions against Jews.
In August – Nazis set up an Office for Combating Homosexuality and Abortions (by healthy women).
In January – Jews are banned from many professional occupations, including teaching Germans, and from being accountants or dentists. They are also denied tax reductions and child allowances.
November 8, 1937 – ‘Eternal Jew’ traveling exhibition opens in Munich.
March 12/13, 1938 – Nazi troops enter Austria, which has a population of 200,000 Jews, mainly living in Vienna. Hitler announces Anschluss (union) with Austria.
In March – After the Anschluss, the SS is placed in charge of Jewish affairs in Austria with Adolf Eichmann establishing an Office for Jewish Emigration in Vienna. Himmler then establishes Mauthausen concentration camp near Linz.
April 22, 1938 – Nazis prohibit Aryan ‘front-ownership’ of Jewish businesses.
April 26, 1938 – Nazis order Jews to register wealth and property.
June 14, 1938 – Nazis order Jewish-owned businesses to register.
In July – At Evian, France, the U.S. convenes a League of Nations conference with delegates from 32 countries to consider helping Jews fleeing Hitler but results in inaction as no country will accept them.
July 6, 1938 – Nazis prohibited Jews from trading and providing a variety of specified commercial services.
July 23, 1938 – Nazis order Jews over age 15 to apply for identity cards from the police, to be shown on demand to any police officer.
July 25, 1938 – Jewish doctors prohibited by law from practicing medicine.
August 11, 1938 – Nazis destroy the synagogue in Nuremberg.
August 17, 1938 – Nazis require Jewish women to add Sarah and men to add Israel to their names on all legal documents including passports.
September 27, 1938 – Jews are prohibited from all legal practices.
October 5, 1938 – Law requires Jewish passports to be stamped with a large red “J.”
October 15, 1938 – Nazi troops occupy the Sudetenland.
October 28, 1938 – Nazis arrest 17,000 Jews of Polish nationality living in Germany, then expel them back to Poland which refuses them entry, leaving them in ‘No-Man’s Land’ near the Polish border for several months.
November 7, 1938 – Ernst vom Rath, third secretary in the German Embassy in Paris, is shot and mortally wounded by Herschel Grynszpan, the 17-year-old son of one of the deported Polish Jews. Rath dies on November 9, precipitating Kristallnacht.
November 9/10 – Kristallnacht – The Night of Broken Glass.
November 12, 1938 – Nazis fine Jews one billion marks for damages related to Kristallnacht.
November 15, 1938 – Jewish pupils are expelled from all non-Jewish German schools.
December 3, 1938 – Law for compulsory Aryanization of all Jewish businesses.
December 14, 1938 – Hermann Göring takes charge of resolving the “Jewish Question.”
January 24, 1939 – SS leader Reinhard Heydrich is ordered by Göring to speed up the emigration of Jews.
January 30, 1939 – Hitler threatens Jews during Reichstag speech.
February 21, 1939 – Nazis force Jews to hand over all gold and silver items.
March 15/16 – Nazi troops seize Czechoslovakia (Jewish pop. 350,000).
April 19, 1939 – Slovakia passes its own version of the Nuremberg Laws.
April 30, 1939 – Jews lose rights as tenants and are relocated into Jewish houses.
In May – The St. Louis, a ship crowded with 930 Jewish refugees, is turned away by Cuba, the United States and other countries and returns to Europe.
July 4, 1939 – German Jews denied the right to hold government jobs.
July 21, 1939 – Adolf Eichmann is appointed director of the Prague Office of Jewish Emigration.
September 1, 1939 – Nazis invade Poland (Jewish pop. 3.35 million, the largest in Europe). Beginning of SS activity in Poland.
September 1, 1939 – Jews in Germany are forbidden to be outdoors after 8 p.m. in winter and 9 p.m. in summer.
September 3, 1939 – Great Britain and France declare war on Germany.
September 4, 1939 – Warsaw is cut off by the German Army.
September 17, 1939 – Soviet troops invade eastern Poland.
September 21, 1939 – Heydrich issues instructions to SS Einsatzgruppen (special action squads) in Poland re
garding treatment of Jews, stating they are to be gathered into ghettos near railroads for the future “final goal.” He also orders a census and the establishment of Jewish administrative councils within the ghettos to implement Nazi policies and decrees.
September 23, 1939 – German Jews are forbidden to own wireless (radio) sets.
September 27, 1939 – Warsaw surrenders; Heydrich becomes leader of RSHA.
September 29, 1939 – Nazis and Soviets divide up Poland. Over two million Jews reside in Nazi controlled areas, leaving 1.3 million in the Soviet area.
In September – Quote from Nazi newspaper, Der Stürmer, published by Julius Streicher – “The Jewish people ought to be exterminated root and branch. Then the plague of pests would have disappeared in Poland at one stroke.”
In October – Nazis begin euthanasia on sick and disabled in Germany.
October 6, 1939 – Proclamation by Hitler on the isolation of Jews.
October 12, 1939 – Evacuation of Jews from Vienna.
October 12, 1939 – Hans Frank appointed Nazi Gauleiter (governor) of Poland.
October 26, 1939 – Forced labor decree issued for Polish Jews aged 14 to 60.
November 23, 1939 – Yellow stars required to be worn by Polish Jews over age 10.
In December – Adolf Eichmann takes over section IV B4 of the Gestapo dealing solely with Jewish affairs and evacuations.
Repost from the old site.
A good progressive principle, but one subject to some exceptions, is the principle of self-determination. This leads naturally to support for most if not all separatist movements. In my case, I do support most, but not all separatist movements.
It’s interesting of all the people around the world, that only leftwingers and various seceding nationalities support this principle. It’s also interesting that once nations secede and become their own state, suddenly they do not believe in the right to secede anymore! We on the Left have always upheld this basic principle.
The USSR held that all Russian nationalities had the right to secede. Unfortunately, it was not enforced much, but it was this very principle that allowed Gorbachev to permit the various USSR republics the right of secession in 1991. At that time, on at least that one variable, the USSR was the most civilized nation on Earth.
Its civilized nature was a direct result of the progressive principles that were embodied in the USSR by the first Bolsheviks in 1917. Later, Czechoslovakia split up into the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The reason they were able to do this so civilly is, number one, because they are White, and number two, due to the decades of internationalism that had been inculcated into them by Communist rule.
I say that being White is important because I am absolutely convinced that only White nations are capable of breaking up civilly and peacefully without slaughtering each other in the process. In a way, breaking up your country without massacring your countrymen is the ultimate civilized act.
Even Asians, as civilized as they are, would never be able to break up one of their countries without turning it into a mass slaughter. On this metric, they are not that civilized.
What is it about Whites that allows them to break up a country? Is it altruism? Although studies are rare, in the US, Whites have rates of civic participation, volunteerism and donating to charity far above other groups.
Now, it is true that Communist China has not done a good job of living up the progressive principles of self-determination. Clearly, Tibet has a right to go free, and I would argue that East Turkestan does too. And Taiwan is a separate country. Mao never was a true internationalist. He was always a Chinese nationalist first and a Communist second.
Another reason to support secessionism is that the people who hate it most are the fascists. Idiots are always saying that fascism and Communism and fascism and socialism are the same thing. Let us call them on this one at least.
This is a prime difference between fascists and Communists, the Left and the Right. The Left supports self-determination and cultural autonomy for national minorities and the Right has always opposed this, instead choosing to force all national minorities into a single ethnoreligiolinguistic entity.
No one opposes separatist movements more than fascists, and no fascist nation has ever given one national minority an inch of cultural autonomy. Even in China, national minorities have considerable cultural autonomy and have the right to education in their national tongue.
It’s true that the USSR’s commitment to cultural and linguistic freedom varied throughout the lifetime of the state. Its commitment was highest in the 1920’s, wavered seriously in the 1930’s when Stalin murdered many leaders of national minorities and never attained earlier depths with the subsequent promotion of Russification by Stalin and his successors.
The Left nowadays is sleazy and unprincipled on the question of national self-determination. Sadly, the entire world Left refused to support the right of self-determination for the peoples of the former Yugoslavia, all because Yugoslavia was a Communist state. Then they all opposed the right of Kosova to break away from Serbia, I guess because Serbia used to be Communist state! This leads us to the recent fighting in Georgia.
First of all, Georgia is pretty much of a fake state. Sure, there have been Georgians living in that area for a very long time, but the Soviet republic called Georgia included not only Georgians but other nationalities as well. Other minorities included Abkhazians, Adjarians and South Ossetians.
It is possible that the republic of Georgia was seeded with these minorities as a divide and conquer strategy by the early Soviets, who were not perfect on the national question. Seeding Georgia with non-Georgians would make it more difficult for Georgia to secede from the USSR. Similarly, splitting the poor Ossetians between Russia and Georgia was probably another sleazy divide and conquer game.
Anyway, in 1991, this completely fake state called Georgia (really just a republic of the USSR) gained its independence. If we are to support the principle of self-determination, we need to allow national minorities in fake states newly birthed the right to secede.
On what basis were Abkhazia, Adjaria and South Ossetia an inherent part of some entity called “Georgia”? On no basis whatsoever! On what basis is some new fake country one day or one month old entitled to the bullshit and fascist principle of “inviolability of borders”? On no basis.
So, when the Georgian state (really just a place with lines on the map with a lot of Georgians living in it, but drawn wider than the Georgian nation) got its independence, Abkhazia, Adjaria and South Ossetia surely had the right say, “Screw this, we want no part of this new state. We’re out of here.”
Adjaria, a Muslim region in the southwest, seems to have settled its beef without fighting, but Abkhazia and South Ossetia both waged nasty and ugly separatist wars and managed to secede from the new state of Georgia.
South Ossetia apparently wants to marry with North Ossetia and become a state in Russia called Ossetia. I’m not sure what Abkhazia wants to do. I think they may wish to join Russia also. Abkhazia is located in the northwest and populated mostly by Orthodox Christians.
South Ossetia is located in the north-central part of Georgia and is composed mostly of Ossetians. The Ossetians were formerly called the Alans, an ancient kingdom related ethnically and linguistically to Iranians. They speak a language that is close to Iranian and resemble Iranians physically.
Russia is being cynical about this, as befits an imperialist state. While Russia under Putin has fascist tendencies in the nasty repression on national minorities such as the Mari and the people of the Caucasus, Putin is willing, like all sleazy imperialists, do support secessionism when it benefits imperial goals.
Russia has it in for Georgia, lately because Georgia has lined up heavily on the side of the US. There are US and Israeli advisors working with the Georgian military right now, and Russia is terrified by Georgian threats to join NATO.
We need to note that NATO doesn’t have much right to exist anymore. NATO was set up to deal with the Soviet threat. That’s gone. So why is NATO still there? Apparently to form an imperialist bloc to oppose Russia! The Russians are furious about this, and rightly so. Who can blame them?
Sadly, it is also possible that Russia is using this as a payback to the West for supporting the secession of Kosova. The West, including the US in its extreme cynicism, first of all supported the secession of all of the former states of Yugoslavia (apparently on the cynical grounds that since they were seceding from a Communist nation, therefore the right of self-determination was invoked).
Then, just to stick it to Russia for the most part, the US and most of Europe supported Kosova and Montenegrin independence, just so long as they were pro-West. I supported it too, on the basis of solid principles called the right of self-determination. It is sad that the entire world Left opposed the independence of Kosova. This made Russia furious.
Yet in Abkhazia, in the same sleazy West that championed every micro-state to be cleaved out of the former Yugoslavia, not a single Western state, nor any state anywhere, would support the principled secession of the Abkhazian people from Georgian imperialism.
Does fascist Russia under Putin support the right of self-determination, however limited? Of course not. As a capitalist, and in fact fascist and now imperialist state, Russia clearly has no principles whatsoever. As payback to Kosova secession which hurt their pitiful fascist pan-Slavic feelings, the Russians are now supporting secession in Georgia. Principles? Come now!
This whole conflict is shot through with imperialism all the way. The US is supporting Georgia not out of any principles, because as an imperialist state, the US has zero principles other than profiteering, plunder and subjection of other states and peoples. The US supports secessionism when it benefits imperialist interests, and opposes it when it hinders imperialist interests!
And of course, it never admits this. When it supports secessionism, the US apparently invokes the right of self-determination. When it opposes secessionism, the US invokes the right of inviolability of national borders, as it is doing now in the case of Georgia. Contradictory, no? Sure is!
The sleazy and pro-imperialist US media fails to point out this dissonance, and your average educated American will inconsistently invoke, like a moron, either the right of self-determination of the right of inviolability of borders, depending, as they support the imperial projects that they have been inculcated to support.
This conflict, like all imperialist bullshit wars, boils down to various imperialist nations waging armed conflict over access to markets and natural resources.
As is, oil from Azerbaijan and gas from the Stans goes through Georgia and I believe hooks up with Russian pipelines. The US, Georgia, Israel and Turkey wish to cut Russia out of the deal and cut a new pipeline through Georgia to Turkey. At least some of the oil will then go to Israel and from there, through the Suez and out to the Indian Ocean and various nations in that region, in particular India.
Someone suggested to me that the West is cutting this new pipeline because they are afraid that Russia will cut off the flow of oil to the West. Forget it. They will not do any such thing unless pushed to the wall. The US, Israel, Georgia and probably Turkey are all doing this because they are more or less imperialist states.
This conflict is also shot through with old Cold War “Beware the bear” bullshit. Even after the fall of Communism and the return of capitalism to Russia, US imperialism and anti-Communists everywhere have continued to see Russia through and Cold War and anti-Communist lens. It is as if the fall of the USSR never occurred. Any analysis of the conflict between the US and the West that leaves out this essential element is lacking.
As a socialist, I want to ask the supporters of capitalism on this blog some questions.
Show me how advanced capitalism can exist without imperialism. Prove to me that an advanced capitalist state can exist in the modern world without becoming an imperialist power.
It seems to me that large capitalist states are typically mandated to become imperialist states and from there to engage in conflict, often armed, with other imperialist states for markets and natural resources. If this is so (and I think it is) how then can one support capitalism as it now exists, since it seems to be impossible to have large capitalist states that are not also imperialist?
As you might have guessed, I support the right of South Ossetia to self-determination and to secede from Georgia and the right, however sleazy, of Russia to assist them in this principled endeavor.
This conflict is getting real nasty real quick. Russia is threatening Israel and the US over their support for Georgia and the US has incredibly ordered Russia to withdraw its forces from South Ossetia. And the conflict very quickly seems to have expanded to Abkhazia. We have the potential for a really nasty conflict here.
I would like to point out that the neoconservative scum who now pretty much run this country are first and foremost ferocious imperialists. They are some of the most voracious backers of US imperialism out there. In this endeavor, neoconservatives have been picking fights with Russia for a long time now.
Many Jewish neoconservatives are involved in this imperial conflict with Russia, and unfortunately, in this light, they have supported Chechen independence not out of any decent principles, since neocons have no principles, but just to screw Russia.
The fact that elements of imperialism have supported the Chechen separatists rouses Russian nationalism and paranoia and makes Russia all the less likely to give the Chechens and other Caucasian peoples the independence they deserve.
It’s not known why the neocons have such a beef with Russia, but they also backed the Russian Jewish oligarchs in their fleecing of Russia. There seems to be an old beef between Jewish nationalists and Russia.
We can see the outlines of this conflict in the campaign to “free the Soviet Jews”, which was one of the original catalysts for the formation of the Jewish neocons back in the 1970’s. There may also be a “screw the Russians” mindset dating from the hostile history of Russians and Jews in Russia, a history replete with pogroms of Jews.
AJ asks about the rebellions in the Northeast of India, which have been going on nonstop since the birth of the state.
The imperialist state of India has no right to any of those lands. All of those places refused to join India in 1947. They only joined after India attacked them militarily or threatened to. Most of those states have been in armed rebellion ever since.
How come we never hear about it? Do you think it is because they are brown, so journalists don’t want to paint them as imperialists?
They have no right to Kashmir either.
The imperialist state of the USA, along with almost all other (objectively fascist) states on Earth, is generally opposed to separatism. Only Venezuela, Nicaragua, Cuba and a few other places give support to any separatists. It’s because all states stick together, and the enemy of all states is the separatists. On this line, I am with the anarchists. Most of these separatist rebellions are justified, and I support them. But no state wants to break up.
Mostly the various imperialist states of the world at best cynically support the separatism of their enemies and the often brutal of separatism of their allies. There are no good people in politics. Most politicians are sociopathic, and most states are sociopathic by nature.
The only reasonable position is a principled one. Either separatism is generally justified or it is never justified. To support the separatism of your enemies on moral grounds while promoting the brutal suppression of separatists by your allies is the most cynical and disgusting politics. Of course a Jew gave a name to it: Realpolitik. But before Kissinger there was Machiavelli.
I will say that one great thing about Whites is that we are the only race civilized enough to break up our states on civil grounds without committing mass genocides like all the other barbarian races do. Only Whites could have broken up the USSR (one of the greatest acts of emancipation and liberation of the 20th Century), only Whites could have broken up Czechoslovakia, and only Whites are willing to break up the UK and Canada.
A commenter questions how I can say that the breakup of the USSR was a progressive moment in history. But it was…
Rob, you once wrote that the breakup of the USSR was a progressive moment in 20th century history? How can you call yourself a leftist after such a statement? You do realize what happened in Russia and around the world after 1990, don’t you? Gorbachev was a traitorous, cowardly, slimebag on the CIA payroll.
I don’t think so. The breakup was not a progressive event due to the abandonment of socialism, though many seem to think that the project was not working out very well, so maybe the abandonment of socialism was proper after all.
The real way that it was progressive was in terms of the liberation of the official nationalities of the republics of the USSR. After all, nations want liberation. This is a longstanding Left position and demand from the anti-colonial movement on.
From the very start, the USSR gave the nationalities the right to secession. That was way back around 1920 or so. How many other states allowed such a thing back then? None.
So when those Republics seceded, that was allowed under the Soviet Constitution. How many states will allow their minority regions the right to self-determination in that way? Almost none. Almost all states ban the self-determination of the nations amidst their borders. If these nations decide to secede and exercise that right, the states react with fascist aggression. So almost all states on Earth are fascist in that sense.
Only the USSR and a few other states are or were truly non-fascist or anti-fascist on this most important question.
Other antifa states: Great Britain, Canada, the former Czechoslovakia. That’s about it, right? Can you think of even one more?
It’s unfortunate that the new republics went in a capitalist direction, but that was their choice. Russia also went in a capitalist direction, apparently a choice of the people. This was right and proper, true people’s rule and popular decision-making.
In this modern era, one of the ultimate litmus tests for extreme liberalism or humanism is the completely selfless permission that a state grants when it allows a part of itself to secede without starting a bloodbath.
Since the Peace of Westphalia, Europe initiated the notion of the nation-state, a brand-new concept. Before, there had only been empires at most, if that in most places. The notion of the nation-state gradually grew until the present moment, when it is unfortunately the status quo. If empires disallowed succession, nevertheless it did occur quite a bit, since empires never had much legitimacy in the first place.
The problem with the nation-state is that it has built up a nonsensical and undeserved legitimacy, even among the most liberal folks. As soon as lines are drawn on a map, they are instantly there for all time, never to be redrawn.
Except that imperialist maggots like the US and the UK, while paying lip service to the inviolability of borders, nevertheless, scumbags that they are, cynically pursue seccessionism and border violability against any states that are deemed enemies.
Look at how quickly the world recognized the states that emerged out of the USSR. While the breakup itself was testament to the USSR’s ultimate morality, its internationalism, a moral spear that split the heavens while the capitalist world wallowed in nationalist mud, the new states were only recognized by the capitalist shits because they were so eager to disaggregate their old socialist foe.
At the moment, the US cynically promotes the breakup of Iran, Venezuela and Bolivia. In the past, the US supported seccessionism in China. Kurdish secessionism in Iraq was promoted by the US and then its suppression funded by the US, depending on the whims of the day. At the moment, the US funds Kurdish secessionism in Iran while funding its crushing by the Turkish state in Turkey.
The truth is that under capitalism, imperialist states like the US have no morals whatsoever, only interests. That 90% of the US public thinks that the US state always operates according to some moral compass is an example of the success of the sickening US capitalist media machine in creating a nation of high-IQ idiots.
Anyway, let us take this as a litmus test of the ultimate in civilized behavior in 2009: a state that will peacefully allow parts of itself to secede, if they so choose.
Most states, being governed by uncivilized animals, react to secessionism with violence, often extreme violence. The legion of the primitives is vast: Russia, France, Spain, Turkey, Russia, India, China, Indonesia, Burma, Georgia, New Guinea.
No non-White state will ever allow peaceful secession. They are simply too primitive and uncivilized to allow such a thing. By White I mean European Caucasians. Caucasians outside of Europe are incapable of peaceful secession either, because they are still relatively uncivilized compared to Europeans.
Asians, despite their high IQ’s, are still primitive in some ways, and even NE Asians are incapable of dealing with peaceful seccessionism. The response of 105 IQ China is instructive. Secessionist movements in Taiwan, Turkestan and Tibet have been dealt with via repression that can only be called fascist, while similar movements in Inner Mongolia are never allowed to see the light of day.
Indonesia’s response to secessionism in East Timor, Aceh and West Papua, areas it has a weak, if any, claim to, have been characterized by horrific violence.
India has behaved criminally, even genocidally, in Kashmir. India has little legitimate claim on the entire Northeast, yet they will never let an inch of it go.
Burma has no legitimate claim on any of its territory at the moment, as a criminal state loses the legitimacy of its governance. Nevertheless it continues to commit genocide against its secessionist movements, as it has since 1947.
For the moment, Pakistan and Iran can be excused their backwardness in violently assaulting secessionism, as imperialism, Indian and US, is conspiring to break up both states.
No Black African nation will ever allow secessionism, though they may as well. Most all of them can’t even govern their own territory responsibly, so they don’t have much right to the land in the borders. Failed states revoke the right to inviolability of borders.
Sudan has reacted with typical extreme brutality to the legitimate demands of Darfur and Southern Sudan for secession. The response to secessionism, typical of Arabs, was genocide. Since independence, most Arab states have reacted to secessionist demands with genocides of varying degrees.
Somalia is the ultimate failed state. There is no government, and anarchy has held sway for 15 years. Obviously, in the case of the collapse of the state and the onset of anarchy, the inviolability of borders principle is revoked. After all, a state that no longer exists can hardly invoke inviolability of borders.
Two new states, Puntland, and Somaliland, have emerged, but no one will recognize them due to the inviolability of borders crap. This is sad because these new states seem to have their shit together more than Somalia (whatever that means) does.
The nation of Georgia had no legitimacy before its birth in 1991. The day it was born, its fake borders were deemed inviolable forevermore. South Ossetia and Abkhazia have already broken away, as was their right. Georgia will never allow this transgression. Abkhazia has been de facto independent since 1991, but almost no one on Earth will recognize it, all because Georgia is a pro-Western state.
In contrast, the moment Kosovo declared independence, the West showered it with recognition, since they were splitting from Serbia, whom the West hates.
As I said earlier, Western capitalist states have no morals.
Yugoslavia did allow itself to be broken up, but violence followed. Slovenia had little violence, and Macedonia and Montenegro had none. The Turks are not really European Whites, and Turkey’s always been the sick man of Europe. Since Ataturk, it’s been a fascist state. That’s not changing anytime soon.
In Spain, there are secessionist movements, but the Spaniards have always been fascist and backwards, and they will never allow anyone to secede.
So who will? The UK and Canada. Those are the only two states that allow secession based on a simple vote. There are movements in Scotland and Quebec, but they don’t have majority support yet. Yet still it seems by this litmus test, the UK and Canada are the most civilized states on Earth.
Czechoslovakia broke itself up soon after the fall of Communism, a great moment in human progress. Yet this was only possible due to decades of Communist internationalism and anti-nationalist propaganda. Since, then, fascist-like nationalism has set in in both new states.
The USSR allowed itself to break up. In a number of cases, idiot nationalist violence followed the breakup, but most states left peacefully. Anyway, the state did allow itself to be broken up, something almost no other state will allow. This feat of ultimate civilization only occurred in the USSR due to 78 years of internationalism.
Some of the states that broke up were part-Caucasian, part Asian in stock (some of the Stans), so they seem to be an exception to our rule that only Euro Whites will allow a state to break up, but possibly USSR internationalism overrode the racial stock. The only Asiatic or part-Asiatic states that have allowed themselves to dissolve were socialist in character.
Historically, we can see that only Whites seem to be able to secede without massacring each other like wild animals.
For instance, 100 yrs ago, 99.9% of Norwegians voted to secede from Sweden. The Swedes magnanimously accepted that.
In 1920, a plebiscite was held in Schleswig in northern Germany. The area north of Flensburg, 80% voted to go to Denmark. South of Flensburg, 80% voted to stay in Germany even though Danes were 25% of the population of Flensburg. The Allies would have loved to have given all of Schleswig to Denmark just to punish Germany, but the Danes magnanimously accepted the vote of the people.
It’s an open question whether non-Europeans will ever be civilized enough to allow secessionism without committing genocidal massacres in the name of some lines on a map. I don’t think it will happen in my lifetime.
In case you haven’t guessed, this is one more reason I think we European Whites are better than other people. We’re simply more civilized, and this is a prime example.
The Indo-European languages include most of the languages of Europe, Iran and Northern India. For instance, English, Gaelic, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Dutch, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Lithuanian, Latvian, Ukrainian, Belorussian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Romanian, Bulgarian, Russian, Greek, Albanian, Armenian and Kurdish are some of the better-known IE languages of Europe and the Near East.
In Iran, the major language, Farsi, is IE, as is the major language Pashto in Afghanistan. In India and Pakistan, the huge languages Hindi, Urdu and Punjabi are all IE.
They go back to a proto-language called Proto Indo-European, or PIE. In that the languages are all related, the truth is that the peoples are all related to for the greatest part. So Northern Indians, Pashtuns, Iranians, Kurds and Armenians are all closely related to Europeans since they all sprung in part from a common source, in the famous words of Sir William Jones, who discovered the IE languages in the late 1700’s.
Going back 6,500 years, we can reconstruct Proto-Indo-European quite well. One of the best resources is Julius Pokorny‘s Proto-Indo-European Etymological Dictionary (or Indogermanisches Etymologisches Wörterbuch).
Originally written in German, this incredible 2,500 page masterwork has been translated largely, but not completely, into English. One of my favorite pastimes is wading through this monster. I have a downloadable copy on the blog here (huge file).
The homeland of the Indo-Europeans is the subject of much debate, but the modern consensus centers around putting the homeland at 6500 years before present (YBP) around Southern Russia. I have narrowed it to southern Russia, southeastern Ukraine and southwestern Kazakhstan north of the Caucasus. This is more or less the region in between the Black and Caspian Seas.
An arid region called the Kuma-Manych Depression is in the middle of this region and seems to be a major center of PIE culture. I could not find a map of the Depression, but it separates the North Caucasus from the Russian Plain.
There were also settlements in southeastern Ukraine near the Sea of Azov, about 50 miles north of the Caspian Sea in southwestern Kazakhstan and up around the Lower Volga Region near Samara. A good word for this general region is the Pontic-Caspian Steppe.
From there, it’s not really known how or when the Proto-Indo-Europeans spread out, but they show up in Europe some time later. A good map of their migrations or conquests is here. The PIE people had several advantages over their neighbors. They were already into the Bronze Age for one, and not only that, but there were horses running around Southern Russia. The PIE had managed to domesticate the horse. That’s quite an advantage, but the PIE people did one better.
They even invented a wheel. Then they logically put the two together and made horse-drawn chariots. With these chariots, the PIE people apparently conquered much of Europe and later parts of Southwest Asia and South Asia.
The people in Europe at this time were pre-PIE folks. We know little about their culture, but the master of PIE culture, the celebrated professor Marija Gimbutas (A woman!) calls it “Old Europe.” Old Europe is very little known or understood. A probable surviving language from Old Europe is Basque. Another, long extinct, is Etruscan.
The very early people of the British Isles, whose descendants are now known as the Black Irish, populated the Isles between 9000-11000 YBP. They had dark hair, dark eyes and very pale skin. Genetically, they seem to resemble the Basques and may have come on boats from Spain.
The Basques themselves and related peoples may have come from the Caucasus long, long ago. Although Basque is said to have no living relatives, I believe it is related to Caucasian languages like Chechen and Ingush. Throughout Europe one finds folks called Black this and Black that.
I had a girlfriend who called herself a Black Swede and later on, a girlfriend named Linda of Polish heritage. Both had very dark, curly hair, dark eyes and very pale skin. As a guess, these types of Europeans may be the remains of Old Europe.
Gimbutas is also the founder of the Kurgan Hypothesis, which is currently the best PIE theory out there. Gimbutas (photo) sort of lost it towards the end when she got into “Goddess worship” and whatnot, but it’s clear that this Lithuanian archeologist was one of the great scholars of our time.
Some time after 6500 YBP, PIE began to break up, but no one knows quite how this occurred. At any rate, by 4200 YBP, a split had occurred in PIE and a separate language had broken off, Indo-Iranian. There are maps out there of the Indo-Iranian homeland, but I don’t like them all that much so I made my own. My best guess was to place it in the far north of Kazakhstan and just over the border into Russia.
From there, after 3500 YBP, the Indo-Aryans moved out and migrated into Afghanistan, Pakistan, North India and Iran. Many people in these regions today speak Indo-Iranian languages descended from these people. These folks are thought to be the source of the famous Aryan Invasion of India at around this time.
As I noted, the process whereby these languages split off, other than the Indo-Aryan split, is little known. However, assuming this tree diagram is correct, maybe it can shed some light on the matter.
Unfortunately, this chart is hard to read, so I will try to decipher it. The first thing to note is the Anatolian split in the tree, apparently the first split. There are problems with the date for PIE. A glottochronological study recently gave a date of about 8500 YBP for PIE, considerably earlier than the usual date of around 6500 YBP.
Promoters of something called the Anatolian Hypothesis have used this to suggest than an earlier language called Proto-Indo-Hittite was spoken in Anatolia 8500 years ago.
The Anatolian languages split off, and the PIE speakers moved to the Pontic Steppe. The movement of Proto-Indo-Hittite speakers out of Anatolia to the Pontic Steppe to form the PIE people may be related to the Black Sea Deluge Theory which has recently been proven correct.
The Black Sea expanded dramatically according to this theory as, around 7600 YBP, a waterfall 200 times the size of Niagara Falls (!) poured through the Bosporus Straits, transforming the pre-Black Sea freshwater lake into the present-day brackish (part-salt water, part-fresh water) Black Sea. Soon after this event, PIE culture appears in the Pontic Steppe.
This is a very controversial proposal called the Indo-Hittite Theory, but I have long supported it. The late Joseph Greenberg, one of the greatest historical linguists that ever lived, also supported it.
This theory holds that Indo-European has two branches, Indo-European proper and the Hittite branch. The Hittite branch is related to the other branch only in a binary fashion. There is good evidence for this.
The Anatolian languages, all of which are now extinct, are very strange and seem distant from the rest. The appear archaic and have retained many forms which seem to not be present on the rest of IE. My guess is these are archaic forms.
Anatolian lacks grammatical gender – masculine:feminine, an IE innovation spread through the family. Instead, it has an archaic noun class system called animate:inanimate. This is reminiscent of ancient Niger-Congo languages in Africa. In addition, the Anatolian vowel system is reduced (fewer vowels) and the case system is simpler.
Many basic IE vocabulary terms are simply missing in Anatolian. All of this debris tends to add up to the hypothesis of an ancient branch of the language family.
Tocharian is visible on the diagram as Italo-Celtic-Tocharian. This branch is extremely strange, since Tocharian was spoken way over in Asia near East Turkestan and Kyrgyzstan, and Celtic and Italic are spoken in the heart of Europe. This is the area where the mummies with blond hair and blue eyes have been found. Tocharian may have split as early as 6000 YBP.
The Tocharian language is also very ancient and strange and is only distantly related to the rest of IE. If anything, it seems to look somewhat like Anatolian.
A very ancient branch of IE also split off around this time. Known as Balkan or Paleo-Balkan, it may also have split off 6000 YBP. There were two major branches, Thracian and Illyro-Venetic. Thracian is extinct, and all that remains of Illyro-Venetic is Albanian, a very ancient IE tongue that is only distantly related to the rest of IE. Proto-Illyrian and Thracian split around 4200 YBP.
Here is a map of the Illyrian tribes before the Roman conquest. It is from this milieu that the Albanians emerged. The Albanian language is quite strange within IE and seems to have very ancient roots dating back to Proto-Paleo-Balkan from 6000 YBP.
Another very early split you can see in the chart is something called Indo-Irano-Armeno-Hellenic. The Armeno-Hellenic branch probably split off 6000 YBP. The fact that Armenians and Greeks today still possibly retain a PIE appearance is also suggested by this early split. Only the Greek languages and Armenian remain of this family, as most of the family is extinct. Proto-Hellenic may have split off around 5000 YBP, and Proto-Armenian may have split around 4500 YBP. The proto-Hellenics seem to have been related to the Indo-Iranians. This may be why a number of North Indians look like Greeks, Turks or Armenians.
Armenian and Hellenic are also strange IE branches that are only distantly related to the rest of IE.
The Italo-Celtic branch broke off as early as 5000 YBP. Proto-Celtic split about 2800 YBP; the homeland is in Northern Austria. The Hallstatt Culture is associated with them. The Proto-Italics are dated to around 3500 YBP in Italy. Before that, the Italo-Celtic Homeland is thought to have been in southern and central Germany, Poland and Czechoslovakia.
The fact that Italics (Italians and related languages) and Celts share common roots shows how insane and stupid Nordicism is, as Nordicists say that Italians south of the Po are ‘non-Whites.’ It turns out that those greasy dagos and those blond and blue guys in dresses blowing pipes in the Highlands are the same folks after all, as they share common genetic roots in Austria 3500 YBP.
Proto-Germanic also dates far back, with pre-Proto-Germanic possibly being spoken 3800 YBP in northern Germany, Denmark and Southern Scandinavia ( map). The homeland of the pre-proto-Germanics is in Southern Sweden and Jutland. They may have settled this area as early as 5000 YBP. These speakers may have been speaking something called Balto-Slavo-Germanic, a group you can see on the tree above.
Proto-Germanic proper probably dates from the Jasdorf Culture. The homeland of the proto-Germanics was in northern Germany, around Schleswig-Holstein south into the Lower Elbe region in what is now Saxony-Anhalt and the Hanover area.
It also extended along the Baltic coast of Germany to about the Polish border, down into Brandenburg and Mecklenburg. The original center of the homeland was in Schleswig-Holstein and Lower Saxony.
Balto-Slavic is also a very ancient branch of IE. Lithuanian is an ancient IE language that is very conservative and has retained many ancient IE reflexes that have been lost in the rest of IE. Proto-Balto-Slavic probably split around 4000 YBP. Proto-Baltic and Proto-Slavic split apart about 3400 YBP. Map of the Balto-Slavic homeland. This homeland encompassed Western Ukraine, Belarus and Eastern Poland.
Proto-Slavic, dating from 3400 YBP, seems to have its homeland in Northern and Western Ukraine and in Southern Belarus.
The proto-Baltic homeland dating from the same time frame is about the southern border region of Belarus around the Pinsk Marshes.
The rest of the splits, of Slavic, Italic, Celtic, Indian, Iranian and Germanic into their branches, are pretty well-documented, and all occur within the past 1500-3000 years.
Let us move to some interesting dilemmas about the Indo-Europeans. One is the distribution of R1a associated with the Indo-Europeans.
The highest levels of this haplogroup are found in Eastern Europe in a narrow band from the Black Sea in the Ukraine through Poland to the Baltic Sea and in Northern India and areas to the northwest around the Hindu Kush and the Pamirs, but that does not mean that these two groups are particularly closely related. Northern Indians are most closely related to Iranians and relatively distantly to Eastern Europeans.
The truth is that this haplogroup is only a signature of a split from around the Aryan-Greco homeland in the Pontic Steppe region discussed above. This left high levels of R1a in Eastern Europe and in north India. High levels in North India are not particularly notable but exist only due to a founder effect. Actually, the highest levels are not found in North India but in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and north Afghanistan.
The high levels found in North India have led some to assume incorrectly that the homeland of the R1a people was in that area, but this is not the case.
R1b levels are highest in Spain and the Western British Isles. The launching point for the R1b seems to have been the Maykop Culture of 5500 YBP. From there, they spread all over Europe.
The Maykop Culture was an early PIE split that existed between the Taman Peninsula just east of the Crimea east to the Dagestan border in the area that includes part of Southern Russia east of the Crimea, Adygea, Karachay-Cherkessia, Kabardino-Balkaria, North Ossetia, Ingushetia and Chechnya in the Caucasus.
The center of the culture was around Maykop in Adygea (Circassia). The region is now inhabited by peoples of the Caucasus and is heavily Muslim.
The Proto-Indo-Europeans belonged both R1a and R1b. Their homeland was in the Pontic-Caspian steppe, in what is known as the Kurgan culture (7000-2200 BCE).
The presence of R1b in modern times between the Black Sea and the Caucasus hints at the Maykop culture (3500-2500 BCE) as their most plausible homeland, while the Eurasian steppes to the north were R1a territory. […]
A comparison with the Indo-Iranian invasion of South Asia shows that 40% of the male lineages of northern India are R1a, but only 20% of the female lineages could be of Indo-European origin (H, J, K, T, U).
The impact of the Indo-Europeans was more severe in Europe because European society 4,000 years ago was less developed in terms of agriculture, technology (no bronze weapons) and population density than that of the Indus Valley civilization.
This is particularly true of the native Western European cultures where farming arrived much later than in the Balkans or central Europe. Greece was the most advanced of European societies and was the least affected in terms of haplogroup replacement.
Native European Y-DNA haplogroups (I1, I2a, I2b) also survived better in regions that were more difficult to reach or less hospitable, like Scandinavia, Brittany, Sardinia or the Dinaric Alps[…]
The eastern branch of the R1a steppe people was the Andronovo culture (2300-1000 BCE), around modern Kazakhstan, which correspond to the Indo-Iranian branch of languages. Their migration to the south have resulted in high R1a frequencies in southern Central Asia, Iran and the Indian subcontinent.
The highest frequency of R1a (about 65%) is reached in a cluster around Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and northern Afghanistan. In India, 15 to 45% of the population is R1a, depending on the region and caste. Over 70% of the Brahmins (highest caste in Hinduism) belong to R1a1, due to a founder effect.
Pokorny, Julius. 1959, 2007. Proto-Indo-European Etymological Dictionary. A Revised Edition of Julius Pokorny’s Indogermanisches Etymologisches Wörterbuch. Published on the Internet: Indo-European Language Revival Association.
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Repost from the old site.
Here is a great paper (very factual, academic and hardly biased at all – come on, Morris Dees, find that bias!) on Gypsy crime (or actually, Roma crime, since the proper term for Gypsies is now Roma) in Europe, mostly in Czechoslovakia. It’s obvious English is not the author’s native language, but the paper is still pretty much intelligible.
I always wondered why the East Europeans hate these people so much, to the point of killing them, attacking them, etc.
Now I understand.
The Left line on East European Roma, as it is with all criminals nowadays, is appeasement and denial. Are Roma criminals? Well, the Left chortles, they say all Roma are criminals! Surely they are not all criminals? An example of this line are these Wikipedia articles, where Roma crime is barely mentioned, except to say that Roma are arrested at a much higher rate than non-Roma.
The reason given is the usual specious nonsense – Roma are arrested more often due to discrimination! The same nonsense is said about Blacks in the US. Well, gosh, could it be because they commit so many more crimes?
The Left argument is appealing, until you look at some facts. In the case of US Blacks, globally, there is no evidence at all that Blacks are more likely to be arrested for their crimes, or more likely to be prosecuted, or to receive heavier sentences. Recent studies that show Whites more likely than Blacks in the South to receive a capital sentence even question whether they are more likely to get the death penalty.
Another reason given by Wikipedia for Roma crime is that society is mad at Roma for their extreme rate of welfare dependency. Due to the fact that society is hostile towards them, this automagically turns them into criminals! Amazing. Society often seems like it doesn’t like me too much, but the Hell if that is going to turn me into a criminal!
The real problem with the Left is an allergy to facts. According to the report linked above, the majority of Roma in Czechoslovakia are either bums, welfare leeches, petty criminals, pimps, whores, thieves, drug dealers, con artists, loan sharks, or some combination, or, if they do not do these things, they defend them in other Roma, which is almost as bad.
I realize that that’s not a scientific analysis, but that was what the paper stated. Those on the Left who object are asked to produce sociological studies showing that the majority of Roma are not either engaged in or supportive of these activities.
I would still like to see some statistics on how many Roma are actually involved in crime (not how many just get caught), and how these rates compare with non-Roma. As it is, their crime rate seems astronomically high.
Like Ashkenazi Jewish culture in Europe, which Kevin MacDonald points out also had a notion of cleanliness-uncleanness – Roma culture divides the world between the tainted and victimizable and the pure and familial.
Roma are related to people from India. They probably came from Punjab about 950 years ago. East Indians have a low crime rate in general, so it is dubious that the Roma crime rate is genetic. Extremely dubious!
Looking at the individual case histories in the paper, one image flashes over and over: the Black and now Latino underclass in America.
It’s the same: broken families, incompetent parents, chronic unemployment, welfare dependency, thievery, illegitimacy, domestic violence, drug and alcohol abuse, pervasive dishonesty, drug dealing, use and addiction, prostitution and pimping, long arrest records, delinquent peers modeling general thuggery, poor grades, aggressive acting out in and eventual dropout of school, on and on it goes.
Both the young and the old appear sociopathic.
People in India seem to have low rates of sociopathy along with a surprisingly low crime rate. Much of this is attributed to the Hindu religion.
Therefore, comparing them with their genetic twins the Roma, one questions just how genetic sociopathy really is, especially since the best scholars in the field – Lykken – now divide sociopathy into psychopathy (mostly genetic) and sociopathy (largely environmental). It is the latter that Lykken 1, etc. are invited to prove that the (Indian) Roma of Eastern Europe are hereditarily tainted. I have a feeling this will be difficult to prove.
What possible selection pressures (great paper, BTW) could have occurred in European Roma populations over 950 years to actually select for criminality, anti-social behavior, con artistry, and general cultural pathology, especially while the most criminal Roma were being slaughtered and imprisoned (thereby thwarting their breeding potential) for centuries?
One can argue for a Roma IQ of 85 as a causative factor, which is a fact, yet Indians have the same IQ and commit comparatively little crime.
There is a very serious Roma crime problem in the US. Common scams are fortune-telling and store diversion thefts. My contacts in the anti-Internet scammer movement tell me that there is a large group of scammers who are devastating eBay auctions through fraudulent buying and selling. Although they were described as “Romanians”, my contact tells me they are actually Roma.
Although Nigerian scammers are now moving into eBay, the majority of eBay scammers continue to be Romanian Roma.
There is also a similar problem to the Roma behaviors described above with a group called Irish Travellers. The race realists are going to have an even harder time explaining this group, who are nothing but White Irishmen who have adopted a “Gypsy” way of life over centuries, all the way down to incorporating Roma phrases in their cant language.
Race realists are asked to prove how Irish Travellers are different genetically than other White people.
The existence of a group like the Irish Travellers, ordinary White Irish who have adopted and mimicked Roma lifestyle and customs all the way down to fine details, is a perfect case of culturally transmitted criminal and social pathological behavior without a trace of genetic influence.
I feel that immigration officials should be extremely judicious in which Roma they allow into the US, and no Irish Travellers should be allowed in period. Only a few carefully selected Roma immigrants should not be allowed to come to this country.
I believe I had an experience with Roma recently. I was outside the Walmart when a family band approached me. The woman appeared Hispanic but spoke in a gang-inflected manner peculiar for a woman of 40 or so.
She and her band of girls were selling cheap plastic flowers for a 13 year old girl named XXX who was tragically killed by a drive-by shooting in Fresno the week before. They got $1 out of me but then tried to bully me for a $5 or more.
As they walked away, they started speaking a strange language. They told me it was Romanian. I then asked if they were Gypsies and the matriarch quickly said no. But Romanians are not as dark-skinned as these people.
Now that I look back on it, there was no 13 yr old girl tragically shot dead in a driveby shooting. The dark skin, the clever con game, the wandering matriarchal clan, the large brood, the Romanian language, the gang speech in an older woman, it all adds up. They could only have been Gypsies.
In the end, I am having a hard time explaining Roma crime and social pathology, though it is clearly cultural and probably not genetic. How did they end up this way, why, and what is the way forward? Is there a shining path to liberation for these people and those they victimize?
1. Lykken, D.T. (1995). The Antisocial Personalities. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Assoc. (Excellent book by the way! Essential reading on sociopathy and psychopathy by one of the world’s pre-eminent scholars on both.)
In the comments section, Lafayette Sennacherib unfortunately displays some unorthodox revisionist opinions about the start of World War 2.
Why is it always taken for granted that invading Poland and the Sudetenland were monstrous deeds? Until Britain declared war, Germany had done no more than reclaim parts of its country that had been given, with their German populations to the rule of foreigners.
It’s not hard to see why leftists have a problem with Hitler, but why are they so outraged by the idea of self-determination for the Germanic peoples, especially when it opposed the oppressor British Empire?
Revanchism and irredentism are flat out bad news. All ultra-nationalists do this. All ultra-nationalists either wage, or threaten to wage, revanchist and irredentist wars to “reclaim the stolen land for Greater Whatever.”
It’s a solid principle on the Left to oppose this ultranationalist poison everywhere on Earth it starts stinking up the neighborhood. Borders are borders.
Yeah, the Germans lost land. So did Italy. Practically everyone lost land after WW1. Even French Alsace Lorraine kept going back and forth. So what. The Germans lost land after WW2 too. They have a right to fight and get it back?
All the borders on Earth are pretty much the markers of a crime, of invasion, conquered land, ethnic cleansing. We can’t open the genie box and let the ultranationalists start redrawing borders again and reconquering all the lost ancient homelands. That’s a war that will never end.
Updated May 10, 2017. This post will be regularly updated for some time. Warning! This essay is very long; it runs to 101 pages.
This is Part 3 of my reclassification of the German language. Part 3 deals with Upper German.
Part 2, dealing with Middle German, is here, and Part 1, dealing with Low German, is here.
This classification splits Upper German from 10 languages into 81 languages using the criterion of >90% intelligibility = dialect and <90% intelligibility = language.
There is much confusion about the phrase High German or Upper German. Standard German is referred to as Hochdeutsch, or High German, and many think that that means that Standard German is a High German or Upper German language. In fact, it is a Middle German language. However, there is a conflation of Middle German and High or Upper German in which both are subsumed under the mantle of High German. In reality, though, Middle German and High or Upper German are quite different.
The Upper German lects are in pretty good shape. They are located in Southern Germany, and most are doing extremely well. The Upper German Franconian lects are doing fine. The Bavarian lects are going strong. Swabisch and Badisch are doing great.
Low Alemannic in southern Germany is doing fine. Bavarian is the standard language of communication in Austria, and Swiss German is the standard language of communication in Switzerland. Only Alsatian, spoken in France, is somewhat in trouble due to France’s one-language policy.
It is uncertain why Standard German has been unable to take out Upper German languages well, but Southern Germany has always been isolated from the rest due to mountainous terrain and an independent spirit. Bavarian and Swiss German are guaranteed as official languages of nations and are in no danger. A few small Upper German languages in Italy are in trouble, but that is mostly due to their being linguistic islands in a sea of Italian. Upper German Hutterite is doing very well.
This treatment breaks Upper German from Ethnologue’s10 languages into 82 separate languages.
Sudfrankisch (South Franconian) is an Upper German language transitional between Central and Upper German. It is spoken in northwest and north-central Baden-Württemberg around Heidelberg, Karlsruhe, Pforzheim and Rastatt. It has a low number of speakers, and some do not even consider this lect to be a separate entity, so its treatment here is tentative.
The very existence of this language is controversial. For instance, although Karlsruhe and Heidelberg are said to be South Franconian-speaking, in other analyses, the language is “Kurpfalzisch”. This language, or at least the variety spoken in Heidelberg and Karlsruhe, is very hard for Standard German speakers to understand.
Dialects include Bad Schönborn, spoken around the city of the same name, Odenwäldisch, Kraichgauisch, spoken around the cities of Kraichgau and Santkanna, Unterländisch, spoken in and around Heilbronn, Central North Badisch (Zentral Nordbadisch), and Southern North Badisch (Süd Nordbadisch). Intelligibility is apparently good between all dialects (Costin 2015)
Schwabianis a Alemannic lect that has about 40% intelligibility with Standard German. Speakers of Standard German say they find it almost impossible to understand. Commercials and TV series in Swabian are shown on German TV with subtitles. It is spoken in southwest Germany in a region called Swabia.
The southern border of the Swabian language is Villingen-Schwenningen. After that, it follows the Danube to the east. In the east, the border is a line from Augsburg south to the Aargau. Reutte/Außerfern, a dialect in upper East Tirol on the Lech River just south of the Bavarian border, is considered to be Swabian. Stuttgart is in the Schwabian speaking area and the standard version of Swabian is spoken in Stuttgart.
It has 820,000 speakers. Swabian has great dialectal diversity, and there is more than one language in Swabian.
Badisch and Swabian form a dialect chain in which the dialects at the far ends of the chain are not intelligible with each other. The Western Swabian dialects are most comprehensible with the eastern Badisch dialects. Swabian is not intelligible with Alsatian, Swiss German or Bavarian. In fact, the differences between Swabian and Swiss German are tremendous. This is important to note because there are claims that the two are mutually intelligible.
Swabian has many lects. Some of the major groupings are Lower Swabian (Niederschwäbisch or Neckarschwäbisch), East Swabian (Ostschwäbisch), Upper Swabian (Oberschwäbisch), and Southwest Swabian (Südwestschwäbisch). Schwäbisch vom Haiberg is an unclassified dialect spoken in the Swabian Alps. Lower Swabian is spoken in and around Stuttgart and in the Eastern Black Forest. It is not fully intelligible with Upper Swabian (see the Würtingen entry below). In fact, separate languages develop quickly only a few miles from the Upper Swabian/Lower Swabian border. Lower Swabian is also spoken north of Stuttgart up to around Pforzheim and Heilbronn, where it starts shading into East Franconian. Some of the big cities in the Lower Swabia area include Esslingen, Reutlingen and Tubingen. Würtingen Lower Swabian is a divergent Upper Swabian dialect spoken in Würtingen, 35 miles south of Stuttgart. It is not intelligible with the Upper Swabian spoken just six miles away and may not be intelligible with the rest of Lower Swabian. Investigation is needed to determine if Würtingen is intelligible with the rest of Lower Swabian.
The dialects of Würtingen and Dettingen 35 miles south of Stuttgart are so different as to represent separate languages, Würtingen Lower Swabian and Dettingen Upper Swabian, yet they are only 6 miles away from each other. Dettingen seems to be a Upper Swabian dialect, and Würtingen seems to be an Lower Swabian dialect. This is in the area around Reutlingen, where there are several distinct dialects of Swabian spoken. Upper Swabian is language a spoken in the Upper Swabia in the Swabian Mountains (Swabian Alps) in Baden-Württemberg. Tuttlingen is a main city in this area. Upper Swabia is the region from the Swabian Alps south to the Danube. At least the type spoken in Albstadt seems to be unintelligible with the rest of Swabian, in particular with the Swabian spoken in Tuttlingen and Esslingen. Even in and around Albstadt, there are villages only three miles away that speak completely separate languages of Alpine Swabian that are not intelligible with each other, so clearly there are multiple languages within Upper Swabian. Dettingen Upper Swabian is spoken in and around Dettingen, 35 miles south of Stuttgart. It is not intelligible with the Lower Swabian spoken in Würtingen nearby. Bavarian Swabian (Bayerisch Schwaben or Rieser Schwäbisch) is a major division of this language that is spoken in the Donau Reis, a region of Bavaria. It can be seen on the map as the Swabish speaking area of Bavaria north of the Danube. This is the form of Upper Swabian spoken in the Schwaben region of southwest Bavaria. According to residents, it is not intelligible with either Bavarian or with the rest of Swabian spoken in Baden-Württemberg (Kirmaier 2009), hence it is a separate language. Dialects include Augsburg and Lechhausen. Lechhausen is quite different. Other towns in the area include Brenz, Iller, and Lech. The town of Lech is said to be the border between Bavarian Swabian and Bavarian. East Swabian is spoken in the Eastern Swabish Alps. It is also spoken in East Württemberg. Major towns in East Württemberg include Aalen, Ellwangen, Heidenheim an der Brenz, and Schwäbisch Gmünd. Southwest Swabian is spoken in the Neckar Mountains. Allgäu Swabian (Schwäbisch-Allgäuerisch) is spoken in the Allgäu region on the border of Switzerland, Swabia and Bavaria. It contains three divisions. Lower Allgäu Swabian (Unterallgäuerisch), Northern Upper Allgäu Swabian (Nord Oberallgäuerisch) and East Allgäu Swabian (Ostallgäuerisch). Wolfegg, Biberach an der Riß, and Bergatreute are dialects.
Reports indicate that the type of Swabian spoken where Austria, Switzerland and Germany all come together is not understood anywhere else in Germany. On that basis, we can assume that Allgäu Swabian is a separate language. Internal intelligibility data for the dialects is lacking. Russian German Swabish is one of the divergent Swabish dialect spoken by Russian Germans in their widespread colonies. In general, it is not understood by anyone in Germany. There are only a few elderly speakers left. Whether or not it is intelligible with specific Swabish lects is not known. This is an old Swabish from around 200 years ago. Low Alemannic is a group of Alemmanic Upper German lects that are spoken in southern Baden-Württemberg, across the border into France, a bit into Switzerland, and over into southwestern Bavaria.
Upper Rhine Alemannic(Oberrhiinalemannisch) is a Low Alemannic superfamily division based on the work of linguist Karl Bohnenberger. This group includes Alsatian, Badisch, Upper Rhine Alemannic proper, and Basel German. South Badisch is a group of dialects, apparently a separate language, spoken along the French border of Germany and east a ways to the border with Swabian starting near Freiburg im Breisgau and heading up towards Karlsruhe, where it borders South Franconian. The differences between South Badisch and South Alemannic spoken just to the South are considerable, and the two are probably separate languages.
Dialects include Ortenau (Ortenauer), Gottenheim, Freiburg-Opfingen, Elz, Kuppenheim, Iffezheim, Zell am Harmersbach, Kämpflbach, Breisgau (Breisgauer), Middle Kinzig River, and Black Forest (Schwarzwälder). Elz, a subdialect of Black Forest, is spoken around the city of Waldkirch in the Elz Valley. Gottenheim is spoken 6 miles northwest of Freiburg. Freiburg-Opfingen is spoken in and around the city of Freiburg and is composed to two dialects, Freiburg and Opfingen. Zell am Harmersbach is a dialect of Middle Kinzig River.
Badisch forms a dialect chain with Swabian in which the far ends of the chain are not intelligible. The eastern dialects of Badisch are intelligible with the western dialects of Swabian. Intelligibility data between this and Alsatian is needed. Badisch is not at all intelligible with Standard German. Alemán Coloniero (Colonia Tovar) is a Low Alemannic language spoken in Venezuela. It is not intelligible with Standard German. It is originally derived from a Badisch-type lect. Baar Alemannic(Baar Alemannisch) is a Low Alemannic dialect. It is spoken in a region called the Baar in the upper headwaters of the Danube River in far southern Baden-Württemberg.
Towns in this region include Löffingen, Tuttlingen, Bad Dürrheim, St. Georgen, Furtwangen, Villingen-Schwenningen, Rottweil, Trossingen, Hüfingen, Spaichingen, Geisingen, and Donaueschingen. Intelligibility data between this lect, Basel German, South Badisch and Upper Rhine Alemannic and is needed. Rottweil is a dialect spoken in the town of the same name.
Alsatian is a Low Alemannic language spoken in Alsace, France around Strasbourg, and is not intelligible with Standard German, Swabian, Swiss German or Bavarian. In Alsace, it is mostly spoken in the Sundgau region of south Alsace and in the rural areas of the center.
It is an Upper German language related to Schwabian, Swiss German and Walliser. It has 700,000 speakers. The language is still widely spoken despite the fact that it gets little to no support from the French state. 20 years ago, 70% of teenagers said they could speak the language well.
This is a strange area where there are speakers of French, German, and languages that are neither French nor German but are transitional between the two. In this way it resembles the Limburgs region in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. Alsatian borders Upper Rhine Alemannic on the east and Alsatian speakers say it is not the same language as what they speak (Auer 2005). Furthermore, Alsatian is not intelligible with the Upper Rhine Alemannic spoken over the border.
The reason is that Alsace has been cut off from the culture of Germany and Switzerland for so long that it has retained many archaic forms that went out to the east. At the same time, a huge amount of French has gone into Alsatian that has not gone into the languages to the east.
Alsatian is actually a number of dialects, not all of which are completely mutually intelligible, although this is somewhat controversial. The language changes from village to village, and it is common for Alsatians to not understand each other. This implies that Alsatian is actually more than one language, but we don’t have enough data yet about intelligibility between varieties to split any of them yet.
However, the Strasbourg variety has been promoted as the standard and is used on the local TV station (Osorio 2001). Dialects include Strasbourg, Colmar, Vosges, Orbey Valley, and Mulhouse.
Alsatian has only 40% intelligibility with Standard German (Minahan 2002).
Lake Constance Alemannic (Bodeseealemannisch) is a super split in the Low Alemannic languages according to linguist Karl Bohnenberger. It includes Allgäuisch, Vorarlbergerisch, and South Württembergish (Süd Württembergisch), all separate languages.
It has a strong French influence. It has 50% intelligibility with Central Bavarian. It is probably not intelligible with Swiss German.
This language family is spoken in Vaduz, Lichtenstein; Bregenz, Austria, and Ravensburg and Tuttlingnen in Baden-Württemberg. In Tuttlingnen, it borders on Swabish. Allgäuisch (Allgäuerisch) is a group of Low Alemannic lects spoken in far southwestern part of German Bavaria on the border with Switzerland, Austria and Baden-Württemberg. This is part of the Lake Constance Alemannic superfamily. It is not intelligible with Swabish.
It probably resembles Swiss German, but considering that you need a dictionary to translate between Allgäuisch and Swiss German, they must be separate languages.
This language is probably closest to Swabish and the Vorarlbergerisch spoken in far western Austria, to which it is geographically close. This language has heavy French influence.
There are four different Allgäuisch subdialects in each of the four major valleys in the region. One of the dialects is Bernbueren, spoken near Schongau and Weilheim. Other dialects include West Allgäuisch (Westallgäuerisch), East Allgäuisch, Upper Allgäuisch and Lower Allgäuisch. Upper Allgäuisch is further divided into Southern Upper Allgäuisch (Süd Oberallgäuerisch) and Northern Upper Allgäuisch. Lower Allgäuischis spoken in the northern Allgäu. Opfenbach West Allgäuisch is a West Allgauisch dialect. It is spoken at least in and around the town of Opfenbach in far southwestern Bavaria between Wangen and Lindenberg. East Allgäuisch is spoken in the East Allgäu and in the area around Füssen and the Upper Lech River. Upper Allgäuischis spoken in the southern Allgäu and in central Allgäu around Immenstadt and Kempten. The area around Immenstadt and Kempten is probably where Northern Upper Allgäuisch is spoken. Oberstdorf is a dialect of Southern Upper Allgäuisch. Vorarlbergerisch Vorarlbergerischis a group of Low Alemannic languages that is part of the Low Alemannic Lake Constance Alemannic Family. It is similar to Swiss German. Vorarlbergerisch was originally a Swabian language. For the most part, the Vorarlbergers came from Valais in Switzerland in the 1200’s and 1300’s.
This language is spoken in Austria and is not intelligible with Bavarian, Standard German or other German languages. It is spoken in Vorarlberg, a region in far western Austria near the Swiss border.
This is a very different form of Eastern Upper Alemannic Swiss German that is still widely spoken in the area of Vorarlberg. Most reports on the lect indicate that it seems to be a separate language, unintelligible with all other German, Swiss German and Austrian lects other than West Allgauish and Appenzell Swiss German.
Most towns in Vorarlberg have their own dialects. It has elements of Swiss German along with Tyrolean and Bavarian. Vorarlbergerisch is so different that speakers are given subtitles when they speak on Austrian TV. Many Vorarlbergerisch speakers either cannot or do not speak Standard German. There are three main divisions of Vorarlberg – Montafon, Lustenauerisch and Bregenzwalderisch. Feldkirch, Lustenauerisch, and Dornbin are listed as dialects, but Lustenauerisch is so different that it is a separate language. Most Vorarlbergers have some difficulty understanding Lustenauerisch, Muntafunerisch and Wälderisch. South Württembergish(Süd Württembergisch) is a major division of Lake Constance Alemannic. It is spoken east of Tuttlingnen and the Baar along the Upper Danube, south to the Swiss border and over to the border with Bavaria. This language has a heavy French flavor. South Wurttembergish has good intelligibility of Vorarlbergerisch (Scheffknecht 2015) and is best seen as a form of that language. Überlingen,Radolfzell, and Konstanz are dialects. Konstanz is spoken in the city of Konstanz on Lake Constance straddling the Swiss border. It is very different from the Thurgau Swiss German spoken across the border in Kruezlingen (Auer 2005). Lustenauerisch is so different that it itself is a separate language. Most people in Vorarlberg say that they cannot completely understand Lustenauerisch when it is spoken. That is because for many vocabulary items, the words are completely different. In addition, vowels also differ (Scheffknecht 2015). Bregenz Forest Vorarlbergerisch (Bregenzwalderisch or Wälderisch) is a very distinct form of Vorarlbergerisch spoken in the Bregenz Forest (Bregenzerwald) in far northwest Vorarlberg on the borders of Switzerland and Germany. Other Vorarlbergerisch speakers from elsewhere in Vorarlberg have some difficulty understanding Bregenzerwald speakers, so it may be a separate language (Scheffknecht 2015). This area is very famous for its dairy products, especially its cheeses. Lustenauerisch speakers say this is a different language from both Vorarlbergerisch and Lustenauerisch.
There are two main dialects of this language – Vorderwald and Hinterwald – and they are quite different. Nearly every village has its own dialect. Intelligibility between dialects is not known. Egg is a dialect of this language. West Allgäuisch is spoken in the western Allgäu, in the Alemannic-Swabish transition zone of the Allgäu and in the city of Lindau and the area around far eastern Lake Bodensee. West Allgäuisch is close to Swiss German and especially the form of Vorarlbergerisch spoken in the Bregenz Forest (Bregenzerwald) in the northern part of Vorarlberg on the German border. This dialect is apparently intelligible with Vorarlbergerisch (Scheffknecht 2015), at least with Bregenz Vorarlbergerisch. This lect is best seen as a form of Bregenz Vorarlbergerisch. Montafon Vorarlbergerisch (Muntafunerisch) is a Vorarlbergerisch language that is spoken in the Montafon Valley in Vorarlberg, Austria. This valley extends from about Bludenz to the Silvretta Mountains on the border with Switzerland. Speakers say that the situation is better described as other Vorarlbergerisch speakers having some difficulty understanding Muntafunerisch (Scheffknecht 2015).
It has Romansch influences since it is spoken near the Romansch-speaking part of Switzerland. Even villages 15-20 miles away cannot understand this language. This language is utterly unintelligible to any German. Schruns is a dialect of this language. Appenzell Swiss German (Appenzellerisch) is an Eastern Upper Alemannic Swiss German lect that, while not intelligible with other forms of Swiss German, is actually intelligible with Vorarlbergerisch (Scheffknecht 2015) and is best seen as a form of that language. It is spoken in Appenzell Canton in Switzerland near the border with Germany, Austria and Liechtenstein. Appenzell Innerhoden and St. Gallen (Sankt Gallener or St. Galler Deutsch) are dialects of this language. High Alemannic is a group of lects that are spoken primarily in Switzerland. However, a few are also spoken in Baden-Württemberg right on the border with Switzerland. The most famous High Alemannic language is Swiss German. Central Bavarian has 50% intelligibility with High Alemmanic languages. South Alemmanic is a group of High Alemannic dialects, apparently a separate language, spoken in far southwestern Baden-Württemberg in regions called Markgräflerland and Hotzenwäld. Markgräflerland goes from about Basel to about Bad Krozingen in the north and to the Black Forest in the east. Hotzenwäld is a region around the Swiss border from Wehr to Waldshut-Tiengen, otherwise known as the Waldshut District. The differences between South Alemannic and Banish are considerable, and the two are probably separate languages. Klettgau is a South Alemannic dialect spoken on the Swiss border in the Waldshut District. Other dialects include Markgräflerland (Markgräflerisch), Hotzenwäld (Hotzenwälderisch), Rheinfelden, and High Rhine Alemannic (Hochrhein Alemannisch). Intelligibility between this and Swiss German in Switzerland and South Sundgau in Germany is not known, although it is probably not fully intelligible with Swiss German. Within Markgräflerland, there are subdialects such as Lörrach, Grenzach-Wyhlen, and Weil am Rhein. South Sundgau (Süd Sundgauisch) is a High Alemannic dialect spoken in southern Baden down around the Swiss border. Intelligibility between this and Swiss German is not known, but it is said that once you leave Switzerland and cross the border, people are no longer speaking anything close to Swiss German. Standard Swiss German (Schwyzerdütsch) is a High Alemannic language that is from 20% intelligible with Standard German. For many Germans, Swiss German is about as intelligible as Dutch. It has over 6 million speakers. There are dozens of varieties, and every canton in Switzerland has its own lect. Two major varieties are Zurich and Bernese German. However, Bernese is not intelligible with Swiss German proper. Thurgau is very different.
The city of Vaduz, Austria, also speaks Swiss German. There are 20-70 different lects within Swiss German, and according to Ethnologue, many of them are not mutually intelligible. Swiss German is so diverse that speakers are given subtitles when they speak on Austrian and German TV.
The dialectal situation of Swiss German is very complex. About 30-40 years ago, before people started moving around a lot, there were many full Swiss German languages that were not intelligible to other speakers. We can call these the pure dialects. However, the situation has changed a lot since then. A form of Swiss German, call it Standard Swiss German, is now used across Switzerland when communicating with people who speak another form of the language.
Many of the dialects seem to be changing from full languages into mutually intelligible forms of Standard Swiss German with regional dialects, similar to the situation in the US with our mutually intelligible regional dialects. When people are interviewed on Swiss TV, they typically speak in this standard language to make sure that they are understood.
There are some elderly people who can speak only their regional form of Swiss German and not the standard version, and sometimes they cannot communicate with people in a similar situation speaking another version of the language.
However, if you recorded speakers of many of the various forms of Swiss German speaking among themselves and then presented it to speakers of other forms of the language, you would probably need subtitles for them to understand it. In terms of lexicon, the Swiss German lects differ dramatically. There may be 40 different words for the same term in 40 different lects.
Many Swiss German speakers dislike speaking Hochdeutsch, only speak it if they have to, and may refuse to speak it unless it is mandatory. Hochdeutsch classes are now mandatory in the schools, but most Swiss hate to study the language, and this requirement is resented by many Swiss. Some can understand the Hochdeutsch spoken on TV but may not understand the Hochdeutsch of a visitor. Some older Swiss cannot understand Hochdeutsch at all.
However, most even elderly Swiss can speak some form of Hochdeutsch (Chervet 2016).
Although Swiss German is considered to be a Upper German language, it has Low, High and Highest Alemannic forms inside of it. Hence, “Swiss German” is something of a trashcan description for forms of German spoken in Switzerland. The Pündner dialect is unclassified. Basel German (Baseldeutsch, Baslerdütsch, Baslerdietsch, Baseldütsch) is a type of Low Alemannic Swiss German spoken in and around Basel, Switzerland, that is not intelligible with High Alemannic Swiss German.
However, the watered-down lect spoken in the city of Basel itself nowadays is indeed intelligible with Swiss German Proper (Chervet 2016). It is spoken across the border a bit into France west of Basel and north and northeast of Basel up into Baden-Württemberg to Freiburg.
There are different dialects spoken in Baselstadt (a canton encompassing the city of Basel) and Baselland (Basel Canton), but it is not known how much they differ. Intelligibility between Basel German and South Alemmanic spoken to the north is not known, but it is said that when you cross from Germany to Switzerland in this region, people are no longer speaking the same language. Bernese Swiss German (Bärndütsch, Bäärndüütsch, Berndüütsche, Baernduetsch, Bern Deutsch) is is a Western High Alemannic Swiss German language that is not intelligible with Swiss German proper and is thus a separate language. Langenthal is a dialect of this language. Other Western High Alemannic Swiss German dialects include Solothurn (Solothurner, Solothurnerdütsch), Olten, West Aargau (Westaargauisch), Lower Frick Valley (Unterfricktal), Möhlin, Upper Frick Valley (Oberfricktal), Laufenburg, Central Aargau, Aargau, Middle Bernese (Mittelbernisch), Entlebuchisch, Lucerne (Lozärno, Lozärnerdütsch), and Zug (Zogerdütsch).
The Frick Valley is located in northwest Aargau Canton. Möhlin is a subdialect of Lower Frick Valley and Laufenburg is a subdialect of Upper Frick Valley. Olten is a subdialect of Solothurn. Intelligibility data between the lects is not known. Ettiswil Bernese Swiss German is spoken in the town of Ettiswil in the canton Bern. It is so divergent that it may well be a separate language. Zurich Swiss German (Zuridootch, Züridüütsch, Zürcher, Züritüüstcht, Züritütsch, Züridütsch, Zöridütsch, Zuerideutsch or Zürischnüre) is not readily intelligible to speakers of Standard Swiss German. It is spoken in Zurich.
As most Swiss hear this language a lot on TV, they are familiar with it and it is probably intelligible to most of them, but that does not mean it’s inherently mutually intelligible, because it’s not. Züridüütsch is a Central Swiss German dialect. Zurich Oberland and Goldbach are dialects of this language.
Other Central Swiss German dialects include Stadtzürcherisch, Ämtler, See, Oberländer, Winterthurer and Unterländer. Schaffhausen (Neu Schaffhauserdeutsch, Schaffhuserisch), Zurich Weinland (Zürcher Weinländerdeutsch), Davos, Lower Toggenburg (Untertoggenburgerisch), Upper Toggenburg (Obertoggenburgerisch), and Rheintal (Rheintalerisch), Seeztal (Seeztalerdeutsch).
Other dialects in the same group include Middle Lucerne/South Aargau (Mittelland Luzerndeutsch/Südaargauisch), Sursee, East Aargau (Ostaargauisch), Schaan, Balzers, Lucerne (Luzerndeutsch, Luzerner, Luzärnerisch, Luzärner), Bünd (Bündnerisch, Bündner, Bündnerdüütsh, Bündnerdütsh), Bad Ragaz, Chur (Churertütsch, Churer) and Graubünden (Graubündnerisch).
Intelligibility data is lacking. Lucerne contains the following subdialects: Lucerne Hinterland (Hinterland Luzerndeutsch), Middle Lucerne (Lucerne Mittelland), Rigi, Sursee, Entlebuch and Lucerne/Hochdorf. Bad Ragaz is a subdialect of St. Gallen. Chur and Davos are subdialects of Graubünden. Schaan and Balzers are spoken in Lichtenstein. Thurgau Swiss German is an Eastern High Alemannic Swiss German language that is hard for many Swiss German speakers to understand. Dialects include West Thurgau (West Thurgauerisch), East Thurgau (Ost Thurgauerisch) and Upper Thurgau. Inner Swiss German is a group of Swiss German lects that are transitional between High Alemannic Swiss German and Highest Alemannic Swiss German. Intelligibility data is lacking. Dialects include West Oberland (Westoberländisch), Haslital (Haslitalerisch), Lungern, North Urn (Nord Urnerdeutsch), South Urn (Süd Urnerdeutsch), Obwalden (Obwaldnerisch), Nidwalden (Nidwaldnerisch), Engelberg (Engelbergisch) and West Obwalden (Westobwaldnerisch). Lungern is a dialect of Obwalden. Nidwalden Swiss German (Nidwaldnerisch) is an Inner Swiss German language that is not intelligible with other Swiss German lects, especially with Zurich Swiss German. Intelligibility with other Inner Swiss German lects is not known. Fribourg Swiss German (Fribourgerisch, Friburgerisch) is a Highest Alemannic Swiss German language that is not intelligible to other speakers of Swiss German and must be a separate language. It is spoken in Fribourg Canton southwest of Bern in southwest Switzerland. Intelligibility with other Highest Alemmanic Swiss German lects is not known. Jaun, Sensebezirk and St. Antoni are dialects of this language. Other Highest Alemannic Swiss German lects include Unterwalden and Glarus (Glarnerdeutsch, Glarner). Since Highest Alemannic languages seem to be hard for High Alemannic Swiss German speakers to understand, it is questionable to what degree the lects above are intelligible to High Alemannic. Intelligibility testing is in order. Bernese Oberland Swiss Germanis a Highest Alemmanic Swiss German language notorious for having poor intelligibility even with native speakers of Swiss German. It therefore qualifies as a separate language. Intelligibility with other Highest Alemmanic Swiss German lects is not known. Uri Swiss German (Ursnerisch)is a Highest Alemannnic Swiss German language has poor intelligibility with other Swiss German speakers, in particular with Zurich. It is spoken in Uri Canton. Intelligibility with other Highest Alemmanic Swiss German lects is not known. Attinghausen is a dialect. Schwyz Swiss German is a Highest Alemannnic Swiss German that is not intelligible to other Swiss German speakers, especially speakers of Zurich. It is spoken in the canton of Schwyz. Intelligibility with other Highest Alemmanic Swiss German lects is not known. Walser German is a Highest Alemannic language spoken in Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Lichtenstein and Germany. It is spoken by 22,780 speakers. It is not intelligible with any other Alemannic languages and is very different. This is very different from the Walliser language, which is a variety of Swiss German spoken in Wallis Canton.
The Walsers split off from the Walliser group in about 1200 and moved to other areas. The Walsers moved into many areas of the Alps, often displacing or attempting to displace Romansch speakers. In many places, settlements failed, but they held in a few others.
By the mid-1300’s, Black Plague ended the Walser migrations by devastating both the source and the destinations of the migrants.
Most Walser dialects are very different even from one another, so there may be more than three languages in Walser. A process of assimilation is occurring in Switzerland whereby Walser speakers are assimilating to the German-speaking culture around them and in the process losing their language. Intelligibility between the widely variant dialects, other than Toitschu, is not known.
The Walser are expert dairymen, woodworkers, weavers and mountain-climbers who often build a distinctive style house called a Walser house.
Walser has many dialects. Prättigau (Prätttigauer), Avers, Obersaxen, Davos and Rheinwald are spoken in Grisons Canton. Triesenberg is spoken in Lichtenstein and has the support of the local government. Kleinwalsertalis spoken in Austria and has been on the decline lately. Rimella, Rima San-Giuseppe, Alagna Vallesia, Macugnaga and Formatta are dialects of Walser spoken in northwest Italy. The dictionary for Algana Walser has an incredible 22,000 words. Intelligibility data among dialects is not known. Gurin Walser German (Gurinerdeutsch) is a Walser dialect spoken in Bosco-Gurin, Ticino (Italian-speaking) Canton, Switzerland. It has remained isolated from other German varieties for centuries and may well be a separate language. This is close to the forms of Walser spoken in Italy. It must be unintelligible with other forms of Walser other than Italian Walser, and since Italian Walser is not even intelligible to the villages right next door, Gurin Walser must be a separate language.
There are only 23 speakers of this language left in the village of Bosco-Gurin, and it seems to be dying out (PFECMR 2006). However, including speakers outside the town, there are 120 speakers. In addition, 40 people have receptive but not productive competence in the language (COE 2006). Toitschu Walser German is an outlying language related to Walser that is spoken in the village of Issime in the Upper Lys Valley in Valle d’Aosta in far northwest Italy.
Toitschu is a highly divergent Walser lect that has been heavily influenced by Piedmontese and Francoprovencal. It is unintelligible with the rest of Walser and is a separate language. Both Toitschu and Titsch have 600 speakers and are both an endangered languages. Titsch Walser German is spoken in the same region as Toitschu in the Italian Alps of northwest Italy in the nearby villages of Gressoney-Saint-Jean and Gressoney-La-Trinité. There are currently major efforts underway to preserve both Toitschu and Titsch, but the regional Italian government does not seem very cooperative.
Both languages are quickly giving way to Italian especially and both lack many words for modern things. Titsch is much different from Toitschu as it seems to have continued to evolve in time, while Toitschu seems to have been frozen back in 1200 or so.
There is poor intelligibility between Toitschu and Titsch, and both must be separate languages. Major dictionary projects have just been completed and a large conference on both languages was held in the region recently which resulted in the publication of an amazing 163 page document exclusively about the Walser language. The dictionary of Titsch has an incredible 125,000 words, only 4% of which are foreign loans. Walliser German has about 250,000 speakers in the German part of Wallis (Valais) Canton, Central Switzerland. It is is a Highest Alemannic language. It is not intelligible with Standard German or with Walser. This is the more modern form of older, archaic Walser German.
There are six dialects: Gomer, Briger, Saaser, Zermatter (spoken in Zermatt), Lötschentaler and Raron. Simplon is a dialect of Gomer. There is currently a petition before SIL to have it recognized as a separate language. The petition states that all of the the dialects are mutually intelligible.
Gomer differs in having a vowel shift to öi > ö. Briger is the most commonly spoken dialect. Zermatter has a different phonology and sounds melodic. Saaser is similar to Zermatter but not as melodic-sounding. It has a lot of unique vocabulary. Lötschentaler Walliser is the most archaic dialect, about halfway between the archaic Walser German and the modern Walliser German. It also has a lot of unique vocabulary. It is so different that other Walliser German speakers have a hard time understanding it (Chervet 2016). Therefore it makes sense to split it off into a separate language.
Raron is characterized by a vowel shift ä > e. General Walliser Cäse > Raron Cese.
The main city here is Brig.
The language arose from immigrants from the Bern region who came to Wallis in the 700’s. Two different immigration waves led to two different Walliser dialect groups. In the 1100’s, a Walliser group split off and moved to other parts of the Alps. This group became the Walser German language speakers.
Bavarian is a macro-language with three main varieties: Northern Bavarian, Central Bavarian and Southern Bavarian.
There are claims that broad Bavarian is mutually intelligible across its length and breadth, but these claims seem somewhat dubious if not false in light of the 40% intelligibility figure with Standard German and in light of my interviews with native speakers.
Also, there are claims that the diversity of dialects of Bavarian makes it impossible to create one unified dialect for writing Bavarian, as the debate over the Bavarian Wikipedia shows. Even Northern and Central Bavarian, supposedly mutually intelligible, are so different that to create one written form to unite them is impossible.
For these reasons, intelligibility testing is imperative for Bavarian.
Central Bavarian is described as extremely diverse. The various Vienna dialects have all died in the last 20 years, and Viennese now speak a Bavarian-Standard German mixed language based on an old East Viennese dialect mixed with Standard German and no longer speak pure Bavarian.
The differences between Tyrolean Southern Bavarian, Carinthian Southern Bavarian, Styrian Southern Bavarian and Viennese are described as great. An attempt on the Internet to compare Bavarian with Texan English was described as ridiculous.
All of this suggests that intelligibility inside of Bavarian is not all it is cracked up to be.
Bavaria itself is very diverse linguistically, and the state is not synonymous with the language. In Southwestern Bavaria, Bavarian Swabian is spoken; the northern half of Bavaria speaks several Middle German Franconian lects (Bavarian is Upper German); and the far northwest of Bavaria speaks a Palatinian Rhine-Franconian language. Hence, less than 1/4 of Bavaria actually speaks Bavarian, adding up to about 1/3 of the population of the region. Each Bavarian-speaking village in Germany is said to have its own dialect.
Bavarian is not intelligible with Swabian, Alsatian or Swiss German.
A nice chart of the various Bavarian lects is here.
Northern Bavarian or German Bavarian is spoken in Upper Palatinate, Bavaria. It is not intelligible with Central Bavarian (Kirmaier 2009).
Oberpfälz North Bavarian (Oberpfälzerisch or Oberpfälzisch) is a language spoken in southeastern Germany in central eastern and northeastern Bavaria from Regensburg, Kelheim and the Bavarian Forest north along the Naab River to the Fichtelgebirge (Fir Mountains) and in the Northern Bohemian Forest along the border with Czechoslovakia. It is also spoken up by Neumarkt.
According to residents (Kirmaier 2009), this is a separate language, not intelligible with other German Bavarian lects. Dialects of this language include Danube Oberpfälzisch, which, though different, is fully intelligible with the Oberpfälzisch spoken in Neumarkt. This is the Oberpfälzisch spoken along the Danube around the towns of Kelheim and Regensburg. Bohemian German (Boehmerwaelderischish) is a Upper German language spoken in Czechoslovakia, Germany and the US. It looks like both North and Central Bavarian. Starting in the 1200’s, Germans began moving into the Sudetenland, often invited by Bohemian kings. Over the centuries, they pushed out the Czechs and Slavs living in the area and took it over for farming. Although intelligibility data for Bohemian German is lacking, it is often considered to be a full language of its own, so we will treat it as one in this analysis.
Actually, since it ranges from East Middle German to Bavarian Upper German, Bohemian German seems to be a wastebasket designation for the varying lects spoken in the Sudetenland.
On the border of Silesia, it resembled Silesian. On the border of the Erzgebirge, it looked like Erzgebirgisch. In the far northeast, where the Riesengebirge separated Bohemia from Silesia, in the Hultschiner Laendle, the people had a very divergent lect of their own.
To the south of the city of Mies, along the Bohemian Mountains, it looked like Niederbayerisch. A dialect called Böhmish is spoken spoken in the Böhmerwald or Bohemian Forest. In the south, extending all the way towards Moravia, it looked very much like the Central Bavarian spoken in Austria. Sorting all of this out and determining what was a dialect and what was a separate language is going to be difficult. Schönhengst is a dialect of this language spoken in Moravia. Some Bohemian German speakers migrated to New Ulm, Minnesota. Quite a few others could be found in Bukovina, Romania. Egerland Bohemian German (Egerlaenderisch) is spoken in Bischofteinitz, Mies, Tachau and Taus Counties in the Czech Republic in Western Bohemia and in and around New Ulm, Minnesota, where there are still speakers ranging from 52-98 years old. In the Czech Republic, each village had a separate dialect, but all dialects are mutually intelligible. This appears to be a separate language from Oberpfalz Northern Bavarian. German speakers visiting New Ulm say that they cannot understand one word of this language.
This seems to be the same language as Sechsämterland spoken across the border. The Sechsämterland dialect is spoken in the area around Selb, Wunsiedel, Hohenberg and Thierstein in the far northeast of Bavaria near the border with Czechoslovakia and Lower Saxony.
Dialectal diversity is very high in this area, and every village has its own dialect. Lauterbach is a divergent dialect spoken east of Tirschenreuth on the Czech border. Tiss is a divergent subdialect of Egerland. Sangerberg is a divergent Egerlaenderisch dialect spoken in Prameny, Czechoslovakia. Eger is spoken in the large German city of the same name. Tachauer is a dialect that formed the basis for the Machliniec dialect spoken formerly spoken by the Carpathian Germans in their language island in the Machliniec area of the Ukraine. They left during WW2. German Central Bavarian is a group of Bavarian lects that are spoken in Germany. This group includes Lower Bavarian, Upper Bavarian and Lechrain Bavarian (Lechrainisch). It has 50% intelligibility of High Alemannic and Lake Constance Low Alemannic. Lechrain Bavarian is spoken in Western Bavaria and is transitional to Swabian. Map of the Lechrain region. Lechrain is very different from the rest of Bavarian, but intelligibility data is lacking.
Lower Bavarian includes the Bohemian Forest language and many dialects.
Upper Bavarian includes the Starnberg, Highland and Meisbach languages and many dialects. Lower Bavarian Central Bavarian (Niederbayerisch) is spoken in the Lower Bavarian region of German Bavaria. Major cities include Landshut.
According to residents (Kirmaier 2009), this is a full language unintelligible with other German Bavarian lects. Speakers of Landshut Lower Bavarian Central Bavarian claim that Landshut is intelligible with Münchnerisch.
On the other hand, some speakers of Münchnerisch find Regensburg Niederbayerisch almost impossible to understand. Dialects include Landshut, Regensburg, Passau, Straubing, Rottal-Inn, Breitenberg, Neureichenau, Thalberg, Germannsdorf, Untergriesbach, Wegscheid, Geiselhöring, Rattenberg and Landau.
Rottal-Inn is spoken in the Rottal-Inn district east of Munich. Towns here include Eggenfelden, Pfarrkirchen and Simbach am Inn. Rottal-Inn is a fairly typical Central Bavarian dialect, nevertheless, the dialect of Simbach is different from the dialect spoken just across the border in Braunau.
Breitenberg, Neureichenau, Thalberg, Germannsdorf, Untergriesbach and Wegscheid are spoken in far southeast Bavaria near the Austrian and Czech border and are very divergent. Geiselhöring is spoken in the Straubing-Bogen area of the Bavarian Forest. Rattenberg is also spoken in the Straubing-Bogen area and sounds like Viennese. Bohemian Forest Lower Bavarian is spoken in the far southern Bohemian Forest, at least along the Regen River and around the town of Zwiesel, where a dialect called Zwieslerisch is spoken. At least Zwieslerisch is not intelligible with the Niederbayerisch spoken around Straubing, which is only 60 miles away. This language is interesting because it has significant influence from Muhlviertel Lower Bavarian in Austria. Upper Bavarian Central Bavarian (Oberbayerisch) is spoken in the Upper Bavarian region of German Bavaria. The major city in this region is Munich. According to residents, it is a separate language not intelligible with the rest of German Central Bavarian (Kirmaier 2009).
Upper Bavarian Central Bavarian is said to be intelligible across the border into Austria for some ways, but this notion needs clarification since it is said that if you go 15-20 miles in any direction outside of Munich, you are dealing with separate languages.
Some say that people in Munich do not speak Bavarian anymore, but this does not seem to be the case. On the contrary, 20% of the population are Bavarian native speakers and with them, nearly all casual conversation is carried on in Oberbayerisch, and they often refuse to speak Standard German on principle at parties and such.
However, the variety spoken in Munich (Münchnerisch) is a very watered-down type of Bavarian that is no longer the real deal. Nevertheless, speakers of Standard German often find it baffling. The pure Bavarian Münchnerisch seems to be dying in Munich with the massive influx of immigrants from all over Germany. Münchnerisch is still holding on very well in the boroughs of Sendling, Giesling, Obermenzing and parts of Neuhausen.
The type of broad Central Bavarian spoken in Munich is widely understood in the urban centers from Munich to Vienna. There are at least 19 major Central Bavarian dialects, some of which are separate languages.
Dialects include Oberschweinbach, Friedberg, Holledau and Bad Reichenhall. Holledau is spoken in a region north of Munich roughly bounded by Moosburg, Pfaffenhofen, Ingolstadt and Neustadt. This is the largest hops-growing region in the world.
Oberschweinbach is spoken the Fürstenfeldbruck district west of Munich. Bad Reichenhall is spoken southeast of Munich on the border with Austria, near Salzburg. Friedberg, while located in Bavarian Swabia, speaks Bavarian, not Swabian. Starnberg Upper Bavarian is spoken in and around the city of Starnberg, 12 miles southwest of Munich. It has poor intelligibility with Munich Upper Bavarian. This language is mutually intelligible for some distance around it, but speakers cannot understand the Highland Upper Bavarian spoken 20 miles to the south (Anonymous July 2009).
Highland Upper Bavarian is spoken along the German-Austrian border in Germany and Austria in the regions of Rosenheim, Meisbach and Garmisch-Partenkirchen in Germany and across the border in the Karwendel Mountains in Austria. Rosenheim Upper Bavarian is spoken in the Rosenheim District south of Munich near the Austrian border, especially along the Mangfall River in the foothills of the Alps, the Chiegmau Mountains. Towns here include Rosenheim and Bad Aibling. It has very poor intelligibility with Münchnerisch. Intelligibility testing is needed between this language, Garmisch-Partenkirchen and Meisbach. Meisbach Upper Bavarian is a Bavarian language spoken in the Meisbach district of Bavaria in the towns of Meisbach, Finsterwald and possibly others. It is not intelligible with at least some other highland Bavarian lects (de Gyurky 2006). Intelligibility testing is needed between this and other highland Bavarian languages, especially Garmisch-Partenkirchen and Rosenheim, which are close by. Rosenheim is actually the next district over. Garmisch-Partenkirchen Upper Bavarianis a separate language that is spoken in Garmisch-Partenkirchen 50 miles southwest of Munich 6 miles from the Austrian border. This language is not intelligible at all with Münchnerisch. There are 2 dialects in this language – Garmisch and Partenkirchen. Intelligibility between the two is not known, and intelligibility between this language, Rosenheim and Meisbach is also unknown. This language is also spoken across the border in the Karwendel Mountains in Austria.
This language is said to resemble the Tirol Bavarian spoken in Innsbruck, and may not even be a Central Bavarian language. Austrian Standard Central Bavarian is a koine language that is understood in most of Austria except for many in Vorarlberg who speak Vorarlbergerisch. It is based somewhat on the Vienna dialect, but it seems to have diverged quite a bit from the true pure Viennese. It is even understood in Tirol.
This language differs dramatically from the Central Bavarian spoken across the border in Munich and in general is often not intelligible with it. There is a wide diversity of lects in Austrian Bavarian. It is not unusual for one lect to not be understood 50-80 miles away. In Austria as a whole, one source describes the dialects of the country as akin to dozens of different languages, which implies that there are more than 20 languages spoken here. Other sources say that there is a different dialect in each Austrian region, and none of them are intelligible with each other. Based on that, further investigation into Austrian Bavarian intelligibility is urgently needed.
The lects are reasonably stable compared to the situation in Germany because most Austrians still grow up and live most of their lives in one area. Nevertheless, the situation is still poorly understood. Central Bavarian is not intelligible with the Southern Bavarian spoken in Tirol, Carinthia or Syria in Austria.
Austrian Central Bavarian has two major divisions, Austrian Central Bavarian proper and Austrian Southern Central Bavarian.
Southern Central Bavarian includes two main divisions – Styrian and West Southern Central Bavarian. Styrian includes West Styrian (Weststeirisch), Middle Styrian (Mittelsteirisch), Upper Styrian (Obersteirisch), East Styrian (Oststeirisch), Southeast Lower Austrian (Südostniederösterreichisch) and Burgenländ (Burgenländisch).
West Southern Central Bavarian includes dialects such as Salzburg (Salzburgisch), Ausseerländ (Ausseerländisch), North Tirol (Nordtirolerisch) and Werdenfelsisch.
Dialects include Innviertlerisch, Linz, Upper Pielachtal, Salzburgerisch , Wienerwald, Braunau, Bad Aussee, Bad Goisern, St. Johann in Tirol, Salzkammergut, Kufstein and many more.
Viennese and Linz are very different. Innviertlerisch is spoken in the Innviertel Mountains in Upper Austria near the Bavarian border. Intelligibility testing is needed between this and Mühlviertlerisch. Upper Pielachtal is spoken along the Mariazellerbahn Railway from Mariazell to St. Polen in Lower Austria.
Salzburgerisch is spoken in Salzburg. Wienerwald is spoken in the Vienna Forest west of Vienna. Bad Aussee is spoken in far northwest Styria near the border with Upper Austria. Bad Goisern is spoken in far southern Upper Austria near the borders with Salzburg and Styria. Braunau is spoken on the border with Bavaria.
St. Johann in Tirol and Kufstein are actually spoken in Tirol – there are a few Central Bavarian lects spoken there. St. Johann is spoken in the Kitzbühel district in the far northeast of Tirol near the border with Salzburg. Kufstein is spoken in the Kufstein district in northeast Tirol near the Bavarian border.
Central Bavarian is a dialect chain in which, while the lects of two adjoining cities are similar, the lects of major cities can differ dramatically. Speakers of Standard German sometimes say that they cannot a word of Viennese Central Bavarian. Thalgau Central Bavarian is spoken at the very least in and around the town of Thalgau east of Salzburg in Salzburg state. It is utterly unintelligible with other forms of Central Bavarian. Salzburg Central Bavarian (Salzburgerisch) is spoken in and around Salzburg, Austria. However, as of 30-35 years ago, it had poor intelligibility with Pongauer, Pinzgauer and Flachgauer. Hence, it may well be a separate language. The situation today is not known except that dialect use has dropped off alarmingly in Salzburg since then. Pongau Central Bavarian is spoken in the Pongau region south of Salzburg in Austria. Towns ion the area include Bad Hofgastein, Schwarzach, Werfen, Bad Gastein, Dorfgastein, Radstadt, Flachau, and Bischofshofen. 30-35 years ago, it had poor intelligibility with Pinzgauer, Salzburger and Flachgauer. Thus it may well be a separate language. Pongauer has Danube Bavarian influences. The situation today is unknown. Pinzgau Central Bavarian is spoken in the Pinzgau region southwest of Salzburg on the German border near the border with Tirol. The principal town in this region is Zell am See. Towns in the region include Bruck an der Großglocknerstraße, Dienten am Hochkönig, Ferleiten, Fusch an der Großglocknerstraße, Hollersbach im Pinzgau, Kaprun, Krimml, Lend, Lofer, Mittersill, Neukirchen am Großvenediger, Rauris, Saalbach-Hinterglemm, Saalfelden am Steinernen Meer, Taxenbach, Unken, and Uttendorf.
Dialect use remains very high in this area. Pinzgauer is transitional between Central Bavarian and Southern Bavarian, but it is utterly unintelligible with Tyrolerisch. As of 30-35 years ago, it had poor intelligibility with Pongauer, Salzburger and Flachgauer. The situation today is not known. Flachgau Central Bavarian is spoken in the Flachgau region surrounding Salzburg. 30-35 years ago, it had poor intelligibility with Pinzgauer, Salzburger and Pongauer. The situation today is not known. Like Pongauer, it is similar to the Danube Bavarian spoken across the border to the west in Germany. Towns in the area include Neumarkt am Wallersee, Seekirchen am Wallersee, Mattsee, Anif, Fuschl am See, Sankt Gilgen, Lamprechtshausen, Oberndorf bei Salzburg and Straßwalchen. Lungau Central Bavarian is a lect spoken in the Lungau District in the southeast part of Salzburg state. It is quite different from surrounding lects. It is transitional between South Bavarian (Tyrolean, Styrian and Carinthian) and Central Bavarian (Salzburg, Upper Austria, Lower Austria. Carinthian influences are most prominent. It has 20,000 speakers. Use of this dialect has dropped off a lot in recent decades.
Intelligibility data with surrounding Bavarian languages is not known, but considering that the other Salzburg district dialects have poor intelligibility with each other, and the uniqueness of Lungauer, Lungauer is probably a separate language. Mühlviertel Central Bavarian (Mühlviertlerisch) is spoken in the Muhlviertel, or Bohemian Forest, region of Austria where Austria, Czechoslovakia and Germany all come together. It has poor intelligibility with other types of Austrian Central Bavarian. This language is extremely variable, with each village having its own dialect, and the dialects even between villages often differing markedly.
It does not appear to be readily intelligible with the Linz dialect spoken in the biggest city of Upper Austria either. Intelligibility is unknown between this language and Bohemian Forest Lower Bavarian spoken in the German part of the Bohemian Forest. Rural Upper Austrian Central Bavarian in general is unintelligible in both Vienna and Graz. Viennese Central Bavarian (Wienerisch) itself seems to be a separate language. The stronger form of the dialect spoken by low level workers, taxi drivers, etc. is hard to understand even for other Austrians speaking closely related lects. It is therefore reasonable to assume that this hard form of Wienerisch is a separate language. It is still alive in some suburbs such as Ottakring.
Viennese has many unusual words that other forms of German lack. It has a comical quality that is sometimes imitated in parodies.
Most Viennese now speak a Viennese German dialect that is readily understandable to any speaker of German. It is quite similar to the standard German spoken on news outlets. There are a few words that are different for body parts, expletives and food, but other than that, the vocabulary is the same as Hochdeutsch. The accent is less different than the difference between British and American English.
However, Lower Austrian Central Bavarian is still spoken, mostly by older people, in the countryside outside Vienna. It is only about 50% intelligible with Viennese Central Bavarian, so it is a separate language. Further investigation is needed to determine the exact names of these various rural lects and how well they can communicate with each other. Carpathian Central Bavarian was formerly spoken in Slovakia by scattered German colonies. They were ethnically cleansed after WW2, and most ended up in Germany. There still appear to be some speakers left, but they are probably elderly and the languages appear to be moribund.
Dialects included Pressburg, Zipser and Hauerlaender. Pressburg was spoken near the city of Pressburg, and Zips and Hauerlaender were spoken near areas of the same names. Pressburg is a dialect of Viennese, but Zips and Hauerlaender are so diverse that they are not intelligible with any other forms of Bavarian. Zipser Carpathian Central Bavarian was spoken in an area of Slovakia called the Zips. Speakers were ethnically cleansed after WW2. Scattered elderly speakers probably remain, mostly in Germany. Not intelligible with any other forms of Bavarian (sample). Hauerlaender Carpathian Central Bavarian was spoken in and around an area called the Hauerland in Slovakia. Speakers were ethnically cleansed after WW2. Scattered elderly speakers probably remain, mostly in Germany. Not intelligible with any other forms of Bavarian (sample). Landers Central Bavarian is spoken by Transylvanian Saxons who lived in Transylvania in Romania. They were deported from the Salzkammergut region of Austria northeast of Salzburg in the 1730’s. They were ethnically cleansed after WW2, but then were allowed to return.
The language is still spoken in Neppendorf, Großau, and Großpold in Romania and in Germany where many of the Landers fled to after the war. They originally spoke a Salzkammergut Central Bavarian lect, but over time, it changed so much that it must surely be a separate language, and that is the impression that Tapani Salminem, top expert on European languages, gives in a recent assessment. Southern Bavarian is spoken in Austria and in Alto Adige-Südtiro in Italy and includes the cities of Graz, Klagenfurt, Lienz and Innsbruck in Austria and Bozen and Moran in Italy. It is also spoken in the Samnaun region in Switzerland.
Some of the Tyrolean lects in Austria, referred to here for convenience sake as Tyrolean Southern Bavarian (Tirolerisch), are so divergent that they are not intelligible with the rest of even Southern Bavarian; further, each valley has its own lect , and some are not intelligible even with each other. Hence, Austrian Tyrolean Southern Bavarian is a separate language.
In Innsbruck, the main city in the Tyrolean Bavarian region, speakers have a hard time understanding many of the Tyrolean Bavarian lects spoken in many of the surrounding valleys.
There are several main divisions in this language, including Tirol Highlands (Tiroler Oberländisch), Central Tirol (Zentral Tirolerisch), Tirol Lowlands (Tiroler Unterländisch) and East Tirol (Osttirolerisch). Smaller dialects include Innsbruck, Galtür, West Steeg, West Stuben, West Ischgl, West Lech, West Warth, West St. Anton/Tirol, Imst and Zillertal. Zillertal is spoken in the Zillertal Valley. Samnaun is an isolated dialect of this language spoken in the Samnaun region of the Lower Engadine Valley on the border of Austria and Switzerland. It is also spoken in the town of Samnaun in Switzerland, making it the only Bavarian lect spoken in that country. It is said to be very different from the rest of Southern Bavarian, possibly due to its heavy Romansch influence. The Samnaun area was Puter Romansch speaking all the way up into the 1800’s. Intelligibility between Samnaun and the rest of Austrian Tyrolean Bavarian is not known. Zillertal Tyrolean Southern Bavarian is not intelligible with Kitzbuhele spoken to the northwest, therefore, it is a separate language. Zillertal is transitional with Salzburg Central Bavarian to the east. Kitzbuhele Tyrolean Southern Bavarian has poor intelligibility with Zillertal, therefore, it is a separate language. Kitzbuhele has probably even more Salzburg Central Bavarian influence than Zillertal. Kitzbuhele is spoken in the Kitzbuhele Mountains on the eastern border of Tirol Province. Ötztal Tyrolean Southern Bavarian is one of the most ancient and divergent lects in Austrian Tyrolean Southern Bavarian. It has about 8-15,000 speakers. It was recently awarded a UNESCO cultural heritage award as a unique cultural heritage. There is no one Ötztal lect, but there are separate dialects in every little village, and they often vary dramatically.
It is spoken in the Ötztal Valley in Austria is understood at least into the Upper Inn Valley in Austria and over the border in Italy to the Schnals region northwest of Merano. Ötztal appears to be secure for the next few generations anyway and is the common means of communication among people of all ages. Since Ötztal is not understood outside the region, it must be a separate language. Lower Inn Valley Tyrolean Southern Bavarian is not intelligible with Lechtal Tyrolean Southern Bavarian spoken just to the northwest. This language is spoken in the lower valley of the Inn River west of Innsbruck. Therefore, it is a separate language. Lechtal Tyrolean Southern Bavarian has poor intelligibility with Lower Inn Valley Tyrolean Southern Bavarian spoken just to the southeast. This language is spoken in the Lechtaler Mountains west of Innsbruck. Towns in the region include Steeg, Bach, Elbigenalp, Elmen, Stanzach, Weissbach and Reutte. This language is on the border between the Alemannic and Bavarian language groups, and it also has an Allgauish flavor. Pitztal Tyrolean Southern Bavarian is spoken in the Pitztal Mountains west of Innsbruck. Towns in this region include Arzl and St. Leonhard. Pitztal is very different from Ötztal Austrian Tyrolean Southern Bavarian and communication between the two lects is difficult. Therefore, Pitztal is a separate language.
West Tyrolean Galtür was Swiss German speaking until 1900, and today its dialect is more Alemannic than other Tyrolean lects. The West Tyrolean areas of West Steeg, West Stuben, West Ischgl, West Lech, West Warth and West St. Anton/Tirol, all along the border of West Tyrol and Vorarlberg, were originally Highest Alemannic Walser settlements like Vorarlberg. All of West Tyrol was Swabian-Bavarian speaking until the Middle Ages.
Onto this Swabian base came influence from the Walser and Swiss German villages described above, and all of this on top of an earlier Romansch base, as the whole region was also Romansch-speaking. All of these have receded, leaving only Tyrolean Bavarian, but these are the substantial inputs into Western Tyrolean Bavarian. Western Styrian or Western Styrian Southern Bavarian, (Steirisch) is said to be unintelligible outside of the region, and hence must be a separate language. Another lect spoken in Styria, this one in the southern part, is South Styrian. Intelligibility data is not available.
Speakers of Central Austrian spoken on the Austrian flats cannot understand Carinthian Southern Bavarian (Kärntnerisch) either, so it looks like a separate language too. There are three principal dialects of Carinthian, Upper Carinthian (Oberkärntnerisch), Middle Carinthian (Mittelkärntnerisch) and Lower Carinthian (Unterkärntnerisch). Intelligibility data is lacking. Carinthian has heavy Slavic influence due to its proximity to Slovenia.
There are also speakers of Carinthian Southern Bavarian in the Canale Valley/Val Canale area of Udine in Italy. This area used to be part of Austria but it changed hands after WW2 and most of the German speakers moved to Austria. Now about 80% of the population speaks Italian and Friuli and 20% speak Carinthian. This appears to be the same language in Italy and Austria. In Carinthia, there are at least 10 separate dialects of this language.
Intelligibility testing is needed between Tyrolean Southern Bavarian and Carinthian Southern Bavarian. Gottschee Southern Bavarian (Göttscheabarisch or Gottscheerisch) is an outlying Bavarian language spoken by people called the Gottscheers in Kocevje, Slovenia. They apparently originally came to the region in the 1300’s from the Carinthian/Tyrolean border area. It is heavily influenced by the Slovene Carniolan dialects.
It is closely related to the lects of other outlying German colonies in the area, including Zahre (Sauris in Italian), Tischelwang (Paluzza-Timau in Italian) and Pladen (Sappada in Italian) in Northern Italy. The Italian settlements were settled around 1420.
Pladen/Sappada is in the eastern Upper Italian province of Belluno at the far end of the Piave Valley, to the south of the Carnic Alps. These people originally came from the East Tyrolean Pustertal Valley in Austria in the vicinity of Sillian-Heimfels near the towns of Villgraten, Tilliach, Kartitsch, Abfaltersbach and Maria Luggau. Pladen Southern Bavarian is spoken here by about 1,000 of the 1,500 residents, but many also speak Friulian (Maurer-Lausegger 2007).
Southern Bavarian is spoken in Zahre and based on an old East Tyrolean language from the Lesach Valley, which they left in 1280. Zahre is very similar to Pladen, but has more influence from the Romance family, particularly Italian (Maurer-Lausegger 2007). However, Zahre has been isolated from Pladen for 700 years (Denison 1971). This time period is so long that the two lects are probably no longer mutually intelligible.
Zahre is still very much alive and spoken in the town, but it is being displaced by Friulian among young adults and by Italian among children. The Zahre lect was pronounced nearly extinct in 1849 and again in 1897 by visitors.
In Timau, Tischelwang Southern Bavarian is spoken in the But valley, on a tributary of the Tagliamento River on the southern slopes of the Plöcken Pass in the Carnic Alps in the province of Udine. This is actually a Carinthian lect that is probably not intelligible with the Pladen and Zahre lects, though intelligibility data is needed (Maurer-Lausegger 2007).
Therefore, Tischelwang Southern Bavarian is in all probability a separate language. Pladen and Zahre are probably no longer intelligible with lects in Austria, considering they have been isolated from their Austrian parents for 700 years, hence they are probably separate languages. Pladen and Zahre have been isolated from each other for 700 years since the migration, hence they are probably two separate languages, Pladen Southern Bavarian and Zahre Southern Bavarian.
Tischelwang has been heavily influenced by the Friulian language.
Gottscheerisch has maintained many of the features of the Medieval Bavarian languages and it is said to be the oldest living Bavarian language. Speakers were ethnically cleansed after WW2, and now they are scattered about the world. There are about 3,000 native speakers left in the world, many of them living in Ridgewood, New York, where speakers still maintain the language. All remaining speakers are elderly.
It does not appear to be intelligible with the rest of Bavarian or with other German languages and is therefore a separate language.
In Italy, Italian Southern Bavarian encompasses three different lects that differ dramatically from one another. It is spoken in Belluno, Trento and Udine (Maurer-Lausegger 2007).
The Fersina Valley/Valle del Fersina is in Eastern Upper Italy, to the north of Pergine (Persen) near the capital of Trento in the province of Trentino. There are many Bavarian speakers here. They originally came from various valleys in North and South Tyrol. They speak an old mixed Tyrolean vernacular from the 1200’s with a lot of unique developments.
In addition, in the Fersina Valley, every village has its own subdialect. Fersina Valley Southern Bavarian is probably a separate language and is probably not intelligible with other Bavarian lects (Maurer-Lausegger 2007).
In this area, everyone speaks Italian too. This variety of Bavarian has heavy Italian influence.
There is also a South Tyrol Standard Southern Bavarian (Südtirolerisch) that is beginning to emerge in this part of Italy so the three dialects can talk to each other (Maurer-Lausegger 2007). Although intelligibility data between this koine and the rest of Southern Bavarian is not known, it does appear to be a separate language, as most koines are.
One Tyrolean lect spoken in this area is called Eisacktalerisch. It is spoken in the Eisack Valley of South Tyrol and is about halfway between the Innsbruck dialect and the lect spoken in Bolzano. Intelligibility data is not known.
Since the three dialects of Southern Bavarian in Italy cannot understand each other, we may as well split them off. Udine Southern Bavarian is spoken in the province of Udine in the Friuli-Venezia Giulia region. It is not intelligible with the varieties of Southern Bavarian spoken in Trentino or Belluno. Belluno Southern Bavarian is a Bavarian language spoken in the province of Belluno in the Veneto region of Italy. It is not intelligible with either Trento Southern Bavarian or Udine Southern Bavarian. One dialect of Belluno is called Puschterisch and is spoken in the area of Brunico only 15 miles south of East Tirol. Intelligibility with the rest of Belluno is not known. Trento Southern Bavarian is spoken in the province of Trento in the Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol region of Italy. It is not intelligible with Belluno Southern Bavarian or Udine Southern Bavarian. Hianzen Southern Bavarian (Hianzisch) is spoken in southern Burgenland, Austria, along the Hungarian border, particularly around the town of Güssing. It seems to have poor intelligibility even with other nearby forms of Southern Bavarian. Cimbrian is a Bavarian macrolanguage spoken in northeastern Italy. It is not intelligible with Standard German or with other Bavarian languages. It has 2,230 speakers. Cimbrian is actually three separate languages. Lusernese (Lusern) Cimbrian is a separate Cimbrian language not intelligible with other types of Cimbrian. It is spoken in the province of Trento, Italy, where it has 500 speakers in Trentino Alto Adige 40 km southeast of the city of Trento. Tredici Communi (Dreizehn Gemeinden) Cimbrian (Tauch) is a separate Cimbrian language not intelligible with other types of Cimbrian. It has 230 speakers near Verona, Italy, where it is currently spoken only the village of Giazza-Ljetzan. Sette Comuni (Sieben Gemeinden) Cimbrian is a separate Cimbrian language not intelligible with other types of Cimbrian. It is spoken near Asiago, Italy, where it is currently spoken only the village of Roana-Robaan. It has 1,500 speakers. Mocheno is a Bavarian language spoken in Alto Adige-Südtirol, Italy. It is not intelligible with Standard German or with other Bavarian languages. It has 3,500 speakers. Hutterite German is a Bavarian language spoken in Canada and the US. Intelligibility: 70% intelligible with Pennsylvania German, a Palatine language, but only 50% intelligible with the Low German Plautdietsch and Standard German. Hutterite is derived from a Carinthian Bavarian lect. Yiddish is a language spoken by European Jews that has heavy Hebrew influence on a Germanic background. It branched off from Medieval Middle German (mostly Rhenish languages) and was influenced by modern German in the 1800’s and 1900’s. It is not a dialect of German as commonly thought, but is instead a full language. It contains two languages, Western Yiddish and Eastern Yiddish. Eastern Yiddish is spoken in Israel by 215,000 speakers and by 3,142,560 Jewish speakers worldwide. It has poor intelligibility with Western Yiddish. Eastern Yiddish originated east of the Oder River through Poland, in an area moving into Belarus, Russia (to Smolensk), Lithuania, Latvia, Hungary, Romania, Ukraine, and Palestine before 1917 (in Jerusalem and Safed).
There are three dialects: Southeastern, Mideastern and Northeastern. Dialects are apparently intelligible. Southeastern is spoken in Ukraine and Romania, Mideastern is spoken in Poland and Hungary and Northeastern is spoken in Lithuania and Belarus. Eastern Yiddish is not intelligible with Standard German or any other form of German.
Linguist Paul Wexler argues that Eastern Yiddish is a version of West Yiddish creolized over a Kiev-Polessian Slavic lect. Hence, it is a Germano-Slavic creole. Western Yiddish is a language spoken in Germany by 49,210 Jewish speakers. There are also speakers in Belgium, France, Hungary, Israel, the Netherlands and Switzerland. There are three dialects: Southwestern , Midwestern and Northwestern .
Southwestern is spoken in southern Germany, Switzerland, and Alsace (France). Midwestern is spoken in central Germany and parts of the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Northwestern is spoken in northern Germany and the Netherlands. West Yiddish has poor intelligibility with East Yiddish. Western Yiddish is not intelligible with Standard German or any other form of German.
Linguist Paul Wexler has argued that Western Yiddish is a Germano-Sorbian creole. Crimean German is an extremely divergent lect of German that must be a separate language. There are probably few speakers of this language left. It is poorly known. Baltic German (Baltendeutsch) is another extremely divergent lect of German that in all probability is a separate language. They were ethnically cleansed by the Soviets in 1939. This language was formerly spoken by German colonies in the Baltic states. Most of them left for Germany after World War 2. About 10% of the words are unique to Baltic German. The last remaining speakers are mostly over age 45, and it is not being taught to children. There are about 300-400 of them left in Canada, but the youngest of them are age 45. They grew up speaking the language.