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When you learn a foreign language & engage another culture, you are a fish that has chosen to jump out of the ocean. For the first time, you see the sky. For the first time, too, you see the ocean.

With effort you may learn to fly like the birds.
You may find that few birds will accept you as a bird. You will also find that few fish will accept you any longer as a fish.

Your best friends may be fish who can fly & you may fall in love with a bird who can swim

@languagelovers

9)
And finally, I have found it to be fun. And there is a large and growing community. Duolinguo really helped give it a boost. I don't regret spending time on it at all. I'm still studying. And I do like the idea that if the world can benefit from such a tool...well, I've done my part.

<FIN>

@languagelovers

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8)
Yes, it has helped me think about language in general. I do feel like I have a better map in my head of the parts and functions of a language. But Latin did that for me even more than Esperanto. (And once you've studied both, it's obvious that Esperanto is a sort of deconstructed Latin)...

@languagelovers

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7)

Yes, the grammar is easy. But, it still takes time and effort to practice reading and speaking in order to think in terms of the language. You don't magically start speaking and understanding it. It requires work.

@languagelovers

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6)

1) The claim that Esperanto is fast and easy to learn, and that the grammar can be learned in a very short span of time - especially for one familiar with languages.

2) The claim that learning Esperanto can dramatically facilitate the learning of other languages.

I find both claims partially true, but not to the degree propagated by some supporters...

@languagelovers

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5)
I feel I'm in the middle on "the debate". I was curious about Esperanto off and on for a while. I didn't want to "waste my time" with it, however. I used to feel that the time would be better spent on a natural language.
2 things changed my mind...

@languagelovers

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4)
This may or may not influence your view of such languages regarding their usefulness. There is the argument that English is already filling this role. Others argue that English is not so universal as it might appear. Many in the world don't know it, and it certainly has internal inconsistencies. Esperanto is more logically constructed. On the other hand, there is no denying that English has a huge head start.

@languagelovers

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3)
So, the French would carry on speaking French and the Japanese would carry on speaking Japanese. But when they meet they could speak Esperanto (or Ido, Interlingua, etc)...

@languagelovers

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2)
This has never been the goal of Esperanto, nor - so far as I am aware - of any artificial language. The idea is for a clear, simple language to act as an auxiliary. In other words, it would be a perfect lingua franca - a language that is perfectly regular, politically and culturally neutral that all of the world could speak in addition to their native language...

@languagelovers

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1) **Esperanto and the image problem**

What have you heard about Esperanto?

Opinions range from apathy or derision to fiery support. (I'll weigh in later. I just want to clear up a huge misconception first)

Many have the mistaken impression (as did I for years) that the goal of Esperanto - or of any artificial language - is total domination; that is to say, the eradication of all other natural languages...


@languagelovers

Duolingo: What's your relationship with the green owl?

Do you use Duolingo?

If so, for what languages?

How do you feel about the recent changes?
Better? Worse?

A discussion intended to assist the language learning community.

@languagelovers

"Each of you possesses the most powerful, dangerous and subversive trait that natural selection has ever devised. It's a piece of neural audio technology for rewiring other people's minds. I'm talking about your language."

~ Mark Pagel

@languagelovers

Language learning and open-mindedness

Do you feel there is a relationship between language learning and open-mindedness?

Does learning another language open a person to other cultures and make them more accepting?

Or, do people who are already open-minded about other cultures and worldviews seek to learn other languages?

Or, is there no relationship?

Or, does it depend on the individual?

I've had a variety of experiences with this. I'd like to hear from others.

@langaugelovers

@languagelovers

I’m assuming this is true for all of us who are fluent or advanced in another language…

There comes a point - whether you love grammar or hate it - where you realize, “wow…I guess I have to know a lot more about grammar!”

That came for me at 17 studying Japanese on my own. I hated grammar in school. I realized I needed to learn to love it. And I did.

What about you?

@languagelovers

2. Learning another language and culture removes you from the worldview you grew up with. Then, even if you choose to accept everything from your own culture as valid, you have still chosen - it is no longer an unconscious assumption.

You are aware of other ways of thinking and doing and being. Everything is viewed through this lens. You bond with others who have also stepped out of the circle into which they were born.

It is earth shattering and miraculous.

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@languagelovers

1. **And when you peer beyond the curtain...**

An thing I discovered in university about language and culture learning...

A man from France who studies Korean as a boy and lives in Germany for 3 years and a woman from Jamaica who learns Spanish and studies in America are likely to have more in common with each other than with anyone from either of their home towns.

@languagelovers

Think of language learners online as a support community. Brothers and sisters who share your interests. I didn't have this decades ago. I'm excited that it exists now. Finally people who are passionate about languages and culture can talk to each other.

If you feel stuck, if you need encouragement, if you have a specific problem...reach out to us. Ask! My experience is that polyglots and language learners like to support others who are interested. We like to grow the family!

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@languagelovers

And if you can't study Italian regularly for a month, it's not like you are disappointing the entire nation of Italy because they are waiting for you to be fluent.

Have patience with yourself. Enjoy the process. Something I do when I feel this way; I go back and remember how it was when I didn't know ANY of the language. And I feel joy for the amount that I understand. I remember how exciting it is that I can read, write or understand anything.

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@languagelovers

If you keep trying, keep making the effort, you WILL learn more of the language. Even if you have to take a break. Life makes other demands on you. It can be frustrating, but sometimes other priorities make it impossible to be consistent. That's okay, and it's true for everyone.

Remember...

It won't destroy your language learning. Do you think that there is some natural limit? Your brain can only learn 600 Russian words? only 400 kanji? You can learn present but not past?

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@languagelovers

Setting a goal in language learning can help you be motivated. But it's just a tool. It should never be a measure of self worth.If you don't meet your vocabulary goal for the week, or the number of pages of a book for the month, it doesn't matter in the big picture.

What matters is the progress...

Sometimes it might even feel you are going BACKWARD! It might feel that you are forgetting more than you are learning. It's not true. It's just a feeling. Your mind is processing

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Polyglot City

Polyglot City is the right instance for you if you're interested in linguistics, languages, language learning, or translation, or if you're multilingual or polyglot. All languages are allowed to flourish on our timelines, and multilingual puns are welcome. And of course you're also free to talk about other things besides language.