The Songlines - Chapters 35-39 Summary & Analysis

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Chapters 35-39 Summary and Analysis

Chapter Thirty-five finds Wendy and Old Alex recording plant names for her dictionary in Alex's language. She explains to Bruce when Alex tires and goes away that the fact of the diversity of languages among Aboriginals makes her wonder about the myth of the Tower of Babel; why when Aboriginal language had been so uniform, there had been 200 languages in Australia. She points out that people only know the names of plants they have in their part of the country, so their languages grow out of the places where they live. They conclude as they talk both that the basis for one universal language can never have existed, and that the gift the Aboriginal parents leave their children in their language is the land itself, and all its secrets for thriving. The excerpts here focus on the themes of...

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This section contains 683 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Songlines Study Guide
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