by Adrienne Lafrance, originally published in The Atlantic, 18 December 2015
When Luke Skywalker first encounters Yoda, it’s on a swampy planet in The Empire Strikes Back. At first, Luke doesn’t realize the long-eared, wrinkly green creature is, in fact, the one he’s seeking.
“I’m looking for someone,” Luke says.
“Looking?” Yoda replies. “Found someone, you have, I would say, hmmm?”
There’s a narrative effect to the way Yoda speaks. To an English speaker, anyway, the way he orders his sentences sounds vaguely riddle-like, which adds to his mystique.
But what’s actually going on with Yoda, linguistically? Continue reading “An Unusual Way of Speaking, Yoda Has”