Author Topic: Adventures in Language Learning  (Read 3634 times)

Offline Matamoros

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Adventures in Language Learning
« on: May 30, 2017, 02:44:13 PM »
I was pleasantly surprised to find this subforum devoted to languages! There must be a lot of language enthusiasts here at Suscipe Domine. So, what languages do you speak and/or read, what languages are you studying, and what would you like to learn in the future? I'll share my own experiences, but it might take me a while to get around to posting it all.  :)
 

Offline Matamoros

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2017, 02:52:39 PM »
To begin with, I'm a native speaker of English and a heritage speaker of Spanish. That means that I grew up in a community where Spanish was spoken, but I didn't study it formally. The result is that I sometimes sound very fluent and at other times make horrible mistakes.  :)
 

Offline MilesChristi

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2017, 03:36:01 PM »
It's been a while since I've done any work in my languages. Probably will try to go back to Latin first.

I am right now fluent in English and Spanish, can conversate (or did conversate) in French and Italian, and can read Latin every once in a while.
The world is charged with the grandeur of God.
    It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
    It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil
Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?
Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;
    And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;
    And wears man's smudge and shares man's smell: the soil
Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod.

And for all this, nature is never spent;
    There lives the dearest freshness deep down things;
And though the last lights off the black West went
    Oh, morning, at the brown brink eastward, springs —
Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
    World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings.
 
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Offline Jayne

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2017, 03:48:11 PM »
I read French fairly well, but my spoken accent is not good.  This is typical for anglophone Canadians who studied French in high school and university.

I can manage a very simple level of Lithuanian, my husband's native language, but I do not use it much. I need to brush up, since I have a 2 year old grandson in Lithuania and that is the language for communicating with him.

I did Hebrew and Greek courses as part of my theology degree, but have forgotten most of it now.  My Latin is much better since I use it in Mass and for prayers.  I can read Latin far better than I can compose or speak in it.

I am currently studying Korean because I like Korean TV shows.

I majored in Linguistics as an undergrad and am interested in phonology, morphology, and syntax of languages even when I do not speak them. For example, I know that Turkish has the feature of vowel harmony, although I do not know any Turkish. I also like learning about historical development of languages.
Jesus, meek and humble of heart, make my heart like unto Thine.
 
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Offline Matamoros

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2017, 04:03:51 PM »
I was fortunate to go to schools that taught foreign languages early and offered a lot of languages to choose from. I took as many as I could - French, German, Russian, Latin, Greek, and Hebrew.

In college I studied Italian and Portuguese. I attempted Japanese but became frustrated by the complexity of the writing system. On the other hand, I began Arabic, and found the writing system far easier than the rest of the class did, and so I became bored when we spent the entire semester on it. I decided not to continue, which I now regret.

I studied linguistics at the undergraduate and graduate levels, and in the course of doing that, I learned some Hindi, Urdu, and Persian, but the classes went by so quickly, I'm left with only a general impression of how the languages are structured. I'd like to go back and learn them communicatively.

Along the way I've also had some exposure to Chinese, the Scandinavian languages, and quite a few others that I don't really know but can throw out some random phrases in on occasion.  :)

I'm now preparing to enter a graduate program in global studies in preparation for a career in diplomacy, so I'm trying to decide which languages to focus on for the next few years.
« Last Edit: May 30, 2017, 04:10:08 PM by Matamoros »
 

Offline Michael Wilson

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #5 on: May 30, 2017, 06:03:11 PM »
I grew up in a bi-lingual environment; my schooling  and the family maids were in Spanish, as we lived in El Salvador. When I was a child my parents insisted that we speak English at home (it was tough); then we moved to the U.S. We mostly spoke English but used Spanish a lot at school and outside as we lived in Miami for 25 years (again: English/Spanish); We moved to Spain when I was an adult and lived there for 14 years; mostly Spanish all the time, except at home where we spoke English. I also taught myself to read French (pretty good); I don't speak it very well. I was also learning to read Italian when we moved back to the U.S. I regret not having any time to keep up with it, as I think it is one of the most beautiful languages there is. I also studied Latin before entering the Seminary; I got to be pretty good at reading it, but stopped after leaving the seminary.
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"My brothers, all of you, if you are condemned to see the triumph of evil, never applaud it. Never say to evil: you are good; to decadence: you are progess; to death: you are life. Sanctify yourselves in the times wherein God has placed you; bewail the evils and the disorders which God tolerates; oppose them with the energy of your works and your efforts, your life uncontaminated by error, free from being led astray, in such a way that having lived here below, united with the Spirit of the Lord, you will be admitted to be made but one with Him forever and ever: But he who is joined to the Lord is one in spirit." Cardinal Pie of Potiers
 
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Online Heinrich

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #6 on: May 30, 2017, 06:51:08 PM »
I have a fairly good command of German, and as was indirectly pointed out by a wise and perfectly unscathed poster here, I have a very low self esteem and therefore I will break the forum rules by addressing other German speakers outside of the Alps sub forum.

I can get around Spanish speaking areas(I live in the SW) fairly well if I had to. I am mulling over the idea of getting my master's in German with a focus on Idealism, which would include an emphasis on the German labor movement of the 19th Century and economic morality. Note to Louis IX and James03, be prepared to be cited. Although not in the passive voice. If not Idealism, then a study in the various dialects, entailing a linguistic focus in lieu of a philosophical one.

If we move to northern New England, Mrs. Heinrich and I are very much interested in taking French classes. This is the language of her maternal grandparents, but was never really used when she was growing up in New Hampshire.
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Offline Matamoros

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #7 on: May 30, 2017, 07:56:42 PM »
I really am in good company here!

At the graduate level I focused on historical linguistics and philology. I was particularly interested in how the modern Romance languages developed from Latin and how we see those changes attested in written texts from the Middle Ages.
 
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Offline Michael Wilson

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #8 on: May 30, 2017, 09:02:24 PM »
By the way, I don't want to give people the wrong impression, that I was in the seminary for a long time and did a lot of deep studies, essentially I was there for about 24 hours and left!  :laugh:
"The World Must Conform to Our Lord and not He to it." Rev. Dennis Fahey CSSP

"My brothers, all of you, if you are condemned to see the triumph of evil, never applaud it. Never say to evil: you are good; to decadence: you are progess; to death: you are life. Sanctify yourselves in the times wherein God has placed you; bewail the evils and the disorders which God tolerates; oppose them with the energy of your works and your efforts, your life uncontaminated by error, free from being led astray, in such a way that having lived here below, united with the Spirit of the Lord, you will be admitted to be made but one with Him forever and ever: But he who is joined to the Lord is one in spirit." Cardinal Pie of Potiers
 
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Offline Jayne

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #9 on: May 31, 2017, 09:56:44 AM »
I really am in good company here!

At the graduate level I focused on historical linguistics and philology. I was particularly interested in how the modern Romance languages developed from Latin and how we see those changes attested in written texts from the Middle Ages.

I did a medieval Latin course once and really enjoyed seeing the changes from classical. In most cases, one could see how they were leading to Romance languages.  This sort of thing is one of my favourite aspects of linguistics.

Jesus, meek and humble of heart, make my heart like unto Thine.
 
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Offline Graham

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2017, 11:43:05 AM »
... fluent in English ... can conversate ...

lol
 

Offline LuxVera

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #11 on: July 02, 2017, 10:10:06 PM »
I am fluent in English and have studied Koine Greek, Latin, Hebrew, and French at an elementary level.

I really want to get back into Latin and French, but I'm finding it very difficult to have any set schedule or time learning a language. Right now I'm giving French a go-despite the fact I don't like French culture all that much (especially post-French Revolution); I'd much prefer to learn Occitan, but there are no real English-languages resources for learning Occitan. So I decided to try French again, since I studied it for 2 years in high school.

I'm reviewing my elementary French with the "Teach Yourself: Complete French (Beginner to Intermediate Course)" workbook and CDs. I was blessed enough to find a bilingual English-French Bible at the religious goods store (because I accidentally sold mine a year ago) for cheap (instead of the ridiculous $50+ out-of-print price online), though sadly it doesn't contain the deuterocanonical books. I try to read short sections of the Bible in French daily, regardless of how wrong my pronunciation is.

If anyone knows of any good online/interactive French-learning resources feel free to recommend them to me.
 

Online Heinrich

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2017, 12:16:20 AM »
Google: Yabla
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Offline aquinas138

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #13 on: July 03, 2017, 10:00:15 AM »
English speaker, have done graduate work in Syriac, Coptic, Greek, Hebrew and Arabic (though the last two are a bit rusty), comfortable reading in Latin (undergraduate degree), reasonable reading knowledge in German and French (all those grad school articles!). I took a semester of classical Armenian in grad school, but don't remember much beyond the alphabet and the beginning of the Our Father. As a side project when taking a break from my dissertation, I am trying to learn a bit of Church Slavonic and Russian.
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Offline Daniel

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Re: Adventures in Language Learning
« Reply #14 on: July 20, 2017, 07:55:19 PM »
I am a native English speaker, and I know a small amount of Latin and Spanish, and an even smaller amount of Japanese, and pretty much know no ancient Egyptian apart from the very basics.

I do know a few programming languages though. I really like this one language called Shakespeare Programming Language (SPL). Very interesting language...
« Last Edit: July 20, 2017, 07:59:01 PM by Daniel »