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Every language has its own bandwidth
Hi all, I'm affected by a bilateral ski-slope hearing loss.
This patology is a special kind of sensorineural hearing loss and it takes its name by the typical hearing curve shape (ski-slopped) depicted in the audiograms of people suffering it.
People affected by ski-slope hearing loss suffer hearing loss mostly in the high frequencies than in the lower ones.
For example, they have serious problems hearing children's or female's voices.
In my case, I really cannot hear anything beyond 500Hz, neither if I am exposed at 90 decibel.
I still remember the words of my otolaryngologist who told me that if I were born in China I would be deaf-mute most probably.
I was a little child and fortunately at that time I could hear up to 4000 Hz frequency.
Despite I was so young that words remained deeply impressed in my memory and, puzzled, I often asked myself how it was possible that a language could really make a difference between hearing and not hearing or, in an even worst scenario, not speaking.
How it was possible that different languages sharing a common matrix, alphabetic letters, have so different frequences?
One year ago, I read with great interest a paper about researches carried on by an otolaryngologist, Alfred Tomatis.
Some of his ideas were considered with skepticism among part of scientific community but I think it's worth and quite important to stress on a key aspect of his theories:
Every language has its own recognizable bandwidth.
Every language has its own recognizable bandwidth
The charm of a language
All languages make use of a common range of frequencies, from 125 to 250 Hertz. However, the harmonics are different from language to language.
By looking at the table below, it is possible to observe that French frequencies are positioned between 1000 and 2000 hertz. British use high-pitched sounds, ranging from 2,000 to 12,000 hertz, while the Slavs, also known for their "gift of tongues", interact listening and speaking in a spectrum of frequencies ranging between 16 and 15,000 hertz. That's why French and Italians are not so famous for their ability in speaking foreign languages eh!
I would like to explore with you my special case!!
Although I was born deaf because of a mutation gene, the TMPRSS3 (my brother published on wikipedia soon as we found out, after 8 years of examination 😉), I can speak my language, Italian, correctly.
Nevertheless English has always been a big problem for me.
I still remember that a long time ago english dictation made me a very very sad child because, despite I was a very curious guy and I wanted to learn and understand anything which passed below my eyes, giving back a white sheet to my teacher was a very frustrating stuff.
I felt that my "problem", the way I was used to call my deafness, was much much higher than my possibilities of control.
But, hey..., wait let's take the positive side ;-), as well.
Let me tell you this funny short story:
Seven years ago I spent my Summer Vacation in Mexico and, what a surprise! speaking Spanish was not so difficult!!
Surprisingly after only two weeks, I could understand and speak by myself.
For the first time in my life I could learn a language without starting from the grammar.
For sure, of course, from time to time my spelling was not so correct!!
As you can look from the above image, most of the spanish words are located between 125 Hertz and 500 Hertz! This is in fact the key to explain the mystery: it was frequency stuff could hear !!!!!
I leave my audiogram below, so you can understand what I'm talking about (my pictures are never beautiful, I'm not a graphic... have patience please!! 😊 ).
A little bit off topic
Just let me tell you a little show: in Mexico at first I was careful, I always carried the vocabulary One day I met girl while I was trying to "communicate". She scolded me "oh! Chico, aqui se habla con el cuerpo" and I start dancing ... but the fate would have my days as "communication with the body" would end when I met my wife only one years later. So between a sauce and a paso doble ... game over ! :
And Now I'm going To explain The reason why I Write these words. A Few days ago, I was having a talk with a virtual friend (of the kind that partners for their commitment to social issues), she is a formidable amazon deaf and she is Sardinian (it's a word game). She told me She was going To spend a couple of weeks in London . Yeah, She's going To improve Her English And To network Her crused. A new Big challenge!! She was so thrilled ... And what about me ??? She has opened an old wound: I was ever unable to understand people who speek english. You know, I dropped out of university studies (3-year engineering in Computer Science) in order to do that one exam. A Very big mental block, I wasn't saying I'm deaf and at the same time I was afraid of looking foolish. In The end, my foolishness was the question.
Dear friend, I write to You (a famous italian Song ) ... now I'm ready to play too. I know that a cochlear system ranges between 250 Hz and 8500 Hz and English would seem to be up to 12000 HZ but now, compared to before, I well HZ 8000 more 😉