What if whales had literature?

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What if whales had literature?

Postby Indrajala » Sat Jan 29, 2011 9:03 pm

Some days ago it occurred to me that maybe animals, like humans, could have their own canons of literature.

They might not write it down, but they don't need to. In ancient Greece and India they used to memorize vast canons of literature and pass them down generation to generation.

So why couldn't animals do that?

For example whales have their own unique language(s) and this is documented.

Humpback whales use their own syntax - or grammar - in the complex songs they sing, say researchers who have developed a mathematical technique to probe the mysteries of whale song.

The team adds that whales are the only other animals beside humans to use hierarchical structure in language, in which phrases are embedded in larger, recurring themes.

This concept echoes scientific suggestions from the 1970s, but the new computer analysis claims to confirm this and provides an objective measure of the songs' structure and complexity.

Male humpback whales produce songs that last anywhere from about six to 30 minutes. These vocalisations vary greatly across seasons, and during breeding periods they are thought to help attract female partners. Their eerie sound and patterns have captured the attention of marine biologists for decades.


http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn8 ... kills.html


So, rather than the whales just bullshitting with each other about daily affairs, why couldn't they have their own literature and stories passed down from generation to generation?

I'm just saying imagine the possibility... :thinking:
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Re: What if whales had literature?

Postby Ngawang Drolma » Sat Jan 29, 2011 9:42 pm

Anything is possible! :smile:
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Re: What if whales had literature?

Postby Blue Garuda » Sat Jan 29, 2011 9:59 pm

I'm told my dog reads hundreds of messages on our walks.

He replies very eloquently, but not with a pen. ;)

If Wales had literature the Welsh would have to learn to read, silly!

Oh sorry, you meant Whales, which are of course far more intelligent. ;)
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