Thursday, December 29, 2005

Who Knew Tim Rice Was So Zionistic?

From Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat:
(lyrics by Tim Rice, music by Andrew Lloyd Webber)

Close Every Door
(the Yoseif-in-Jail song)


Close every door to me,
Hide all the world from me,
Bar all the windows
And shut out the light;
Do what you want with me,
Hate me and laugh at me,
Darken my daytime
And torture my night;

If my life were important I
Would ask,
Will I live or die?
But I know the answers
Lie far from this world.

Close every door to me,
Keep those I love from me,
Children of Israel are never alone —
For I know I shall find
My own peace of mind,
For I have been promised
A land of my own.
    Close every door to me,
    Hide all the world from me,
    Bar all the windows
    And shut out the light—
Just give me a number
Instead of my name;
Forget all about me
And let me decay.
I do not matter —
I'm only one person;
Destroy me completely,
Then throw me away.

If my life were important I
Would ask,
Will I live or die?
But I know the answers
Lie far from this world.

Close every door to me,
Keep those I love from me,
Children of Israel are never alone —
For we know we shall find
Our own peace of mind,
For we have been promised
A land of our own!


Btw, just wondering, at the risk of DiqduqGeekification, how do yall pronounce the English version of the Hebrew name יוסף?
Joe-siff or Joe-ziff?
I think I've always said Joe-siff, and remember being a bit confused when I noticed people pronouncing "Joseph" with a Z-sound. Could it be Hebrew influence of the samekh in "Yoseif"? Or an internal English dialect difference?

10 Comments:

Blogger Mar Gavriel said...

interwoqaliq woicing

1/01/2006 9:55 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

Well, yes, it is intervocalic voicing, but i don't think that's an active process in 21st-century American English. /s/ and /z/ have been split into separate phonemes for hundreds of years already, just like /f/ and /v/, and [the more marginal] /þ/ and /ð/.

1/01/2006 9:59 PM  
Blogger Mar Gavriel said...

/s/ and /z/ have been split into separate phonemes for hundreds of years already

I think that that's far less true for /s/ and /z/ than for any of the other pairs. How do you pronounce the first "s" in the word "houses"? etc.

1/01/2006 10:02 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

Houzes.

Right. Intervocalic voicing.

But the question is, why do some people (me included) not intervocalicly voice the S in "Joseph"?

1/01/2006 10:05 PM  
Blogger Mar Gavriel said...

But the question is, why do some people (me included) not intervocalicly voice the S in "Joseph"?

Hebrew influence?

But the real question is, why do some people not intervocalicly voice the S in "houses"?

1/01/2006 10:13 PM  
Blogger Mar Gavriel said...

intervocalically

1/01/2006 10:13 PM  
Blogger Lipman said...

But the question is, why do some people (me included) not intervocalicly voice the S in "Joseph"?

Hebrew influence?



Hebrew influence might play a rôle, but don't forget the s isn't simply intervocalic, it's also syllyblyynytiyl after a long vowel (or diphthong these days, at least South of Scotland). And it looks to me as if those were not (necessarily?) changed to /z/. But I'm not sure about this, I'm not an Anglicist.

So we'd have two irreconcilable sinews, and behold - we have both variants.


But the real question is, why do some people not intervocalic[al]ly voice the S in "houses"?

System conformity with the singular? Or the same reason as above.



i don't think that's an active process in 21st-century American English.

That would be relevant only if the word entered English now, wouldn't it?

1/02/2006 5:59 AM  
Blogger The back of the hill said...

Yoisif oyf English? Joe-zuf.
Oyf Ollandish: Yo-zuf.

1/03/2006 3:56 PM  
Blogger Zeh Sefer Toldot Adam said...

Don't know about zionist...
these lines sound much more chareidi to me...

"Close every door to me,
Hide all the world from me,
Bar all the windows
And shut out the light;"

1/06/2006 11:38 AM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

finally, a non-diqduq comment on this post! :-)

ZSTA:

heh, good reading. contextually, though, he's talking ironically about getting thrown in prison. as in "sure, you can do all this horrible stuff to me, but i have hope because i have a Dream"

1/08/2006 2:18 PM  

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