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Thread: Who Speaks Russian? How well? Why? Why not?

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    Who Speaks Russian? How well? Why? Why not?

    Just curious. How many ex-pats speak fluently? Pretty well. OK. Not so well. And hardly at all.

    And why learn Russian, or why not.

    Me? I think I speak pretty well, but sometimes I realize merely OK might be a more honest assessment. And it's hard to know what to think of locals' evaluations as they tend to be favorably impressed if you speak at all.

    And why study Russian? I think it's hard to understand the culture if you don't, and why be here iif the people and culture don't interest you? And people react well when you speak their language. And the literature, folk expressions, etc etc really are great.

    But man do I meet a lot of ex-pats who can barely speak at all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pechorin View Post
    Just curious. How many ex-pats speak fluently? Pretty well. OK. Not so well. And hardly at all.

    And why learn Russian, or why not.

    Me? I think I speak pretty well, but sometimes I realize merely OK might be a more honest assessment. And it's hard to know what to think of locals' evaluations as they tend to be favorably impressed if you speak at all.

    And why study Russian? I think it's hard to understand the culture if you don't, and why be here iif the people and culture don't interest you? And people react well when you speak their language. And the literature, folk expressions, etc etc really are great.

    But man do I meet a lot of ex-pats who can barely speak at all.
    Same for me, most of the expats I knew did not a word of Russian and told me they did not feel ashamed.
    The only reason I studied russian was because I cannot tell an employer I lived in Russia 18months and do not speak the language.
    Also lets stop this crap about the literature, the culture, etc...russian is nowadays a useful business language and thats all.

    To reply your question: my russian is advanced.

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    My Russian is not very good, and strangely enough we only get taught for just under four hours per week. Hopefully when I am there it will improve a lot more!

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    oh I have to disagree. I actually do like Russian poetry, and I find that you get a lot of credit with locals if you know some anecdotes and poslovitsi. But sure, knowing the business Russian is more important, and currently one of my main learning goals, although for me it's hard because I deal with finance, real estate, oil and gas, manufacturing, etc etc so it's a huge amount of vocabulary to learn.

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    My Russian is so-so.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Transparent Theatre View Post
    My Russian is so-so.
    weird, you have often acted on this site as Mr.TheLinguist

    TT, as you see I have not wasted much of my time with you but in a few words I would like to tell you that about Ukraine you were dead wrong.

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    Transparent Theatre is offline ungrateful child of the liberal bourgeousie
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    Quote Originally Posted by SalTheReturn View Post
    weird, you have often acted on this site as Mr.TheLinguist

    TT, as you see I have not wasted much of my time with you but in a few words I would like to tell you that about Ukraine you were dead wrong.
    Maybe we're not all full-of-ourselves Italian onanist braggart fools, Sal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pechorin View Post
    But man do I meet a lot of ex-pats who can barely speak at all.
    Those who don't or don't want to learn (even to read), compensate by raising their voices in their own language in public (usually it's English that's overheard)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Transparent Theatre View Post
    Maybe we're not all full-of-ourselves Italian onanist braggart fools, Sal.
    what does it mean? it is something I can report to AndyB?

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    I do because I live in Russia. To those who don't, whats wrong with you?

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    18 Years Ago I Was Thrown In...

    ...and had to learn the difference between peas and beans,
    and ox and cow and bull meat is all beef,and nothing was good for a decent steak....
    well, i still can't read pushkin but it is enough for the russian penthouse and i can tell my dog that we go for a walk ( for that on the other hand he needs no language).
    i was working around many countries and always tried to learn at least the basics of the local language, sometimes not much when you are on a 2 year contract only.
    and since there are only five letters different from the latin ABC, i think it is not to hard...
    It just needs a little bit of an effort a positive attitude and one must WANT to learn and not HAVE TO. that makes it already half the success.
    There is no greater treasure then pleasure....

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    Quote Originally Posted by Benedikt View Post
    well, i still can't read pushkin
    My 14teen year daughter reads Tvardovskii: Vasiliy Turkin (Твардовский: "Василий Теркин") and constantly ask me to explain some places... and she russian and born in Moscow and not last at school.

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    Quote Originally Posted by smatts View Post
    I do because I live in Russia. To those who don't, whats wrong with you?
    . It is a difficult language to learn, the number of Russian speakers is declining by almost 1M per year, and it is not useful outside of Russia. Mandarin or Tamil would be more useful in the long run. It doesn't help that Russians are generally not tolerant of any level of mispronunciation.

    While I do understand why people find it helpful to learn Russian - workwise, to be able to appreciate the literature, stay current with local news, and generally be able to better appreciate the culture - it is shocking to me how few Russians know any English.

    If you travel to China people BEG you to speak English with them. They know the future and it isn't Russian!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Reverend View Post
    . It is a difficult language to learn, the number of Russian speakers is declining by almost 1M per year, and it is not useful outside of Russia. Mandarin or Tamil would be more useful in the long run. It doesn't help that Russians are generally not tolerant of any level of mispronunciation.

    While I do understand why people find it helpful to learn Russian - workwise, to be able to appreciate the literature, stay current with local news, and generally be able to better appreciate the culture - it is shocking to me how few Russians know any English.

    If you travel to China people BEG you to speak English with them. They know the future and it isn't Russian!
    Russian is not useful outside Russia??? Utter nonsense.

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    [QUOTE=Reverend;416724] It doesn't help that Russians are generally not tolerant of any level of mispronunciation.[quote]
    If it was so. they could not buy anything on rynoks but they can.

    ...it is shocking to me how few Russians know any English.
    Do you consider all Russians, or just people walking on the streets during business hours?

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