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Do you love foreign languages?

  • I'm an INTP, and I love foreign languages.

    Votes: 7 58.3%
  • I'm an INTP, and don't really care much for foreign languages.

    Votes: 4 33.3%
  • I'm not an INTP, but I love foreign languages too.

    Votes: 1 8.3%
  • I'm not an INTP, and don't really care much for foreign languages.

    Votes: 0 0.0%
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Discussion Starter #1
What foreign languages do you speak, and do you have much of an interest in conlangs?

Have any of you invented your own conlangs?
 

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At various times in my life I have spoken or understood, in descending order of ability:

Spanish
French
Korean
German
 

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English

I'm not being clever. English is not my native language. I've never even been to an English speaking country. I understand a bit of Spanish and Italian as well. If I had more time I'd love to learn more foreign languages. French would probably be my first choice.
 

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I speak fluently Italian, English and French, despite none of them being my first language. I also know some Latin (can only read and translate it) and German.
 

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Back in the highschool days, the vast majority of students hated foreign languages. I think it adds an interesting layer to otherwise boring stuff. It makes everyday communication more challenging, it helps me to stay focussed, and it calls for inventiveness and creativity.
In my native tongue I am known for my 'clean' and 'formal' use of language in whatever setting. It is simply the way I like to communicate.

I speak Dutch, English, French and German; in that order of proficiency. (Eligible for any camp in World War II.)
 

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I have had a lot of interest in foreign languages, but the hype got killed off sometime in highschool because I had a very poor French teacher. Because of her, I lost all interest in French culture, and she tried to cram every detail in everyone's brains without focusing as much on the language, and then I just didn't bother following up. I know culture is pretty key to understanding a language and all, but I like to discover most of that on my own and not in a classroom.

I have taken a few Latin courses, too, so I have a decent grip on that and other Latin languages. At least in terms of comprehension - even in French, which is my best language after English and Scandinavian languages, I now have a hard time forming even simple sentences, but I can listen to French news and understand almost all of it.

I've never taken a single course in German, but I can still comprehend a lot if I'm attentive since Scandinavian languages have Germanic roots.

I also know Japanese. By that, I mean that I'm able to efficiently sing along with anime openings.

Seriously, though; If I could fluently learn three languages in a day to get the reap of the benefits, it'd be French, Spanish and German. But if I could make the same choice not for any pragmatic reason whatsoever but just because I like them and the way the composition of words and grammar works, it'd be Finnish, Arabic and Japanese.

Dutch is also worthy of mentioning. Sometimes it's almost like I can comprehend what's being said, but then it's lost in unintelligible jabber. I've always thought that the language was a weird mix of English, Danish and Arabic for some reason.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I've learnt French on and off for the past few years, and have reached the point where I can read it with a bit of effort, and engage in simple conversations. I still have a very hard time understanding spoken French, because everything kind of just gets mashed together, but I can understand it better when the speaker slows down and enunciates.

The main problem I have is actually finding someone to speak with it. Language tutors are expensive, and a lot of language exchange partners just want free English lessons.
 

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I took four Spanish classes during my schooling period and I was fairly good at writing in Spanish. I knew word placement, how it differed from English. The way that adjectives come after nouns for example. Of course I knew all of the conjugations that I was taught as well. But the key difference between myself and the other students was that if I wasn't sure of something, I would try to workaround it and write it a different way that I was confident with. I think that's why I did well. But I also used compound sentences while most other people could somewhat successfully form complete sentences in my second high school.

The other thing kids didn't understand was that it was a different language. The letters had difference names and made different sounds. Call it an accent, but I just viewed the letters as producing different sounds in different languages. Spanish "a" is different from the English one. Plus, we have those combined letters that make a specific sound very often in Spanish while English will break its own norms. For example, "ay" in Spanish virtually always sounds like "I" in English while English will switch between "I" and "A" sounds.

It kind of followed that I was articulate in speaking as well. If the teacher asked a question, I would reformat it in the sense of "restate the question" to form a complete sentence. Apparently forming a question was considered a more point-worthy task on certain assessments. The interesting thing was that native Spanish speakers in class were prone to making mistakes because they likely didn't learn "by the book." Almost like a native English student doing poorly on grammar tests. Even in myself it is very common for me to say, "There is <multiple things>" instead of using "There are." Or rather "There's." There is no "There're" which would actually be a very nice word to have is you ask me.

Most of the actual auditory testing was mainly just to get a gist of what people were saying. They would ask a random question about a small paragraph that was spoken from the computer. Usually aiming at either a random small detail that could be derived from context anyway. I couldn't roll my tongue for "Rs" or anything, but I tried to use the appropriate pronunciation that I gathered.

I was pretty good at Spanish, but now I rarely understand what Spanish people say what they speak. Especially, if their word choice is out of the domain of the vocabulary that I learned. The conjugations are something I could probably relearn if I looked into it a little bit. But I'd say the language is mostly forgotten now. I suspect that if I were to take another Spanish class at some point I would totally wreck it though.
 

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I can speak Chinese and was top of the class when learning.

I remember when I first ever took a Chinese class. The teacher asked why everyone wanted to learn the language. People said banal stuff like, "I'm 1/16th Chinese and want to be able to converse with my long lost distant ex-communicated grandmother who once went on holiday to Shanghai."

When it came to me, I said, "China is huge and it would be awesome to be able to go around the place and talk with people."

The teacher made the biggest WTF face I have ever seen.

Fuck you, teacher, fuck you. I eventually did go around China, talked to people, and even wrote a book about it!

Having said all that, I ticked the "I don't care much about languages" option. I've never found myself to be joyously motivated by the prospect of language learning. Chinese has definitely been fun, but probably only because I'm in the country so I can learn and assimilate without much conscious effort. The thought of learning a new language like German or Portuguese or something doesn't excite me at all.
 

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While I enjoy learning about all the weird things about language and languages, I don't care about learning any new foreign languages.

I speak English fluently (my wife is from the US).

Like @HeadofHudet, I can understand German pretty well because it's close to my native language (Dutch).

I absolutely detested French in highschool. I still know a few words and I can usually roughly guess what French text means, but I can't understand a French conversation.

I had 6 years of Latin, but I never really learned any words (I was fast enough at looking them up in the dictionary) and I've forgotten most of the grammar rules.

I had 2 years of Greek, but the only thing I still know from that is the alphabet.

Dutch is also worthy of mentioning. Sometimes it's almost like I can comprehend what's being said, but then it's lost in unintelligible jabber.
I have the same with Scandinavian languages (except maybe Finnish).
 

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I have the same with Scandinavian languages (except maybe Finnish).
Interesting. It reasserts the idea of the whole "weird mix" thing that I imagined.

Same thing about Finnish. It's easy to forget that Scandinavia really only includes Nor-Den-Swe, but it's obvious to anyone comparing the languages as Finnish is as dissimilar as if they lived on the other side of the globe, and is just badass. Finnish has got more in common with Sami, and, to some degree I think, Estonian.
 

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Finnish isn't even remotely related to Dutch, so I'd be really surprised if you could comprehend any of it at all.
I've never tried to understand Finnish. That "maybe" could've been a "probably" though.

Interesting. It reasserts the idea of the whole "weird mix" thing that I imagined.

Same thing about Finnish. It's easy to forget that Scandinavia really only includes Nor-Den-Swe, but it's obvious to anyone comparing the languages as Finnish is as dissimilar as if they lived on the other side of the globe, and is just badass. Finnish has got more in common with Sami, and, to some degree I think, Estonian.
It probably is a weird mix.

In Dutch and, in a lesser extent, in English too, the term Scandinavia often includes Finland (and Iceland, which I forgot about) as it refers to the members of the Nordic Council, which in Sweden, Norway and Denmark is called Norden.
 

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In Dutch and, in a lesser extent, in English too, the term Scandinavia often includes Finland (and Iceland, which I forgot about) as it refers to the members of the Nordic Council, which in Sweden, Norway and Denmark is called Norden.
Yeah I get that, but the Nordic Council and Scandinavia are two different things. Finland, Iceland and other territories like Greenland are part of the Nordics, but Scandinavia is a trio.
 

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I find the concept of conlangs interesting, but unless I had someone to speak it with in person I don't think I'd ever be motivated enough to study any. Klingon and Elvish would be fun, but I think Esperanto is just fascinating (not to mention potentially useful).

I took Spanish in high school, the two required years plus an additional two years. I always had 98% or higher (sometimes getting 102% or 103% due to extra credit), although I suspect my pronunciation may have been awful (don't know a native speaker to ask, unfortunately). A while back I started using an app to relearn for a few weeks, but dropped it when I got busy and haven't gotten back to it. I'd also like to learn Latin at some point, or perhaps something not so similar (if it's super simple, I can often understand Italian and Portuguese because they're close enough to Spanish I can often figure out from context any words I don't know).

Oh, and there was that one time I tried to teach a language I didn't know. :tongue:

I actually work with languages. I take files clients send us (anything from simple stuff like text strings, Word, PowerPoint, etc. to more complex stuff like eLearning software like Storyline and Lectora), get them ready for the translation software and linguist, then when the files come back I make sure all the formatting, layout, animations, audio synching, etc. match the (usually English) source files. I've worked with Arabic, Bulgarian, Chinese (simplified and traditional), Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French (for France and Canada), German, Hebrew, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Lithuanian, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese (for Portugal, but more often for Brazil), Romanian, Russian, Spanish (for Latin America and Spain), Swedish, Tagalog, Thai, Turkish, Turkmen, Ukrainian, and probably others as I haven't done a great job of keeping track after a certain point. Mostly it's FIGS and CCJK stuff, but I did get to work with Hebrew this week, which is a rare treat. It's fun to select parts of sentences, watching your cursor go right to left, then hit an English word and go left to right (going the opposite direction you're selecting in), then jump to the other side of the English and start going right to left again. It's really disorienting the first few times you encounter it. :laughing:
 
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