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Do you consider yourself a polyglot?

 Language Learning Forum : Polyglots Post Reply
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numerodix
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 Message 25 of 89
22 November 2011 at 10:01pm | IP Logged 
Juаn wrote:
"I can see your vanity under your ragged clothes"

I like yours too.

On this basis I can only conclude that I should be doing this a lot more. Say something
provocative and get clever responses. Fun for you, but above all fun for me to see what
you guys can come up with.
2 persons have voted this message useful





meramarina
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 Message 26 of 89
22 November 2011 at 10:10pm | IP Logged 
We would all do better to consider the original question without resorting to pointed assumptions about other members, as these, true or untrue, are likely to derail an otherwise productive discussion.
4 persons have voted this message useful



Ari
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 Message 27 of 89
22 November 2011 at 10:31pm | IP Logged 
Chissakes, it's just a word. It doesn't actually mean anything.
1 person has voted this message useful



cathrynm
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 Message 28 of 89
22 November 2011 at 11:00pm | IP Logged 
>1. Do you consider yourself a polyglot?

No, I consider myself monolingual. I'm most advanced in Japanese, though Japanese people don't treat me like a person who 'speaks Japanese.' I still have grammar mistake and listening comprehension issues that make actual communication weird and awkward.

>2. Are you planning to become one?

Well, I'm studying languages. I think theoretically this should result in me someday being able to say that I am a 'polyglot' -- though seems a bit much to concern myself with this at this point.    I think if you want to be a Polyglot that Finnish and Japanese is not a good way to do this. I have my own reasons.

>3. If you are, what are you planning to achieve before you can call yourself a polyglot?

For me this is interesting. I made a rule for myself to never put off anything until "after I'm fluent in Japanese" -- and now "Japanese or Finnish." Because this could possibly be a long time and I don't want my life to always be on hold. I try to act as if I can, and then put myself into weird situations, though with work being busy lately I've been a bit more cloistered. I have various non-language related goals, related to work or other things that I'd like to get done.    I think language goals are always incremental --learn words or conjugations, read a book, pass the JLPT tests, things like this.
1 person has voted this message useful





Iversen
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 Message 29 of 89
22 November 2011 at 11:01pm | IP Logged 
1. Do you consider yourself a polyglot?
2. Are you planning to become one?
3. If you are, what are you planning to achieve before you can call yourself a polyglot?

1) yes - you can of course demand nearnative fluency in fifty languages and then there aren't any polyglots left in the world, but my definition is slightly less restrictive
2) too late to answer now, but I did plan to learn at least half a dozen languages while in primary school
3) ... but back then I'm not even sure I knew the word, so the question can't even be answered from a historical angle.


Edited by Iversen on 22 November 2011 at 11:02pm

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Solfrid Cristin
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 Message 30 of 89
22 November 2011 at 11:02pm | IP Logged 
Are we taking this a tad too seriously? It is starting to feel like the real questions are

1 Are you superwoman? ( Eh - no)

2 Do you speak 7 different languages from 5 different language families like a native with a PhD? ( Eh -
no)

3 Then you should perhaps not presume to call yourself a polyglot? (Eh - ok. Sorry)

A polyglot is just someone who speaks several languages 3-4-5-59 - whichever your level is. It does not
mean you have to be or feel like a God.

Edited by Solfrid Cristin on 22 November 2011 at 11:07pm

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Journeyer
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 Message 31 of 89
22 November 2011 at 11:38pm | IP Logged 
Solfrid Cristin wrote:
Are we taking this a tad too seriously? It is starting to feel like the real questions are

1 Are you superwoman? ( Eh - no)

2 Do you speak 7 different languages from 5 different language families like a native with a PhD? ( Eh -
no)

3 Then you should perhaps not presume to call yourself a polyglot? (Eh - ok. Sorry)

A polyglot is just someone who speaks several languages 3-4-5-59 - whichever your level is. It does not
mean you have to be or feel like a God.


I don't get that impression from this thread. I think most people have been responding reasonably and not saying one must have god-like linguistic powers or speak as a native. We've collectively just geeked the word "polyglot" to death over the years, that it's bound to have these connotations.

Cathrynm, if it isn't too personal, I'd love to hear what your reasons for choosing Finnish and Japanese are. As I mentioned, they are both on my list, too. Japanese is a long story, but basically I just find the language mysterious and fascinating. Finnish as well, but even more so due to its exotic-ness. Plus it's one of the most beautiful languages I've ever heard and gives me one of the strongest synesthetic colors of any language (a very deep, pure blue, an arctic ice blue).    
1 person has voted this message useful



Torbyrne
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 Message 32 of 89
22 November 2011 at 11:40pm | IP Logged 
1. Do you consider yourself a polyglot?

Yes. Though multilingual or anything else that describes my ability to communicate in multiple languages is
fine too. I see it as a tag to describe something about me, like the fact that I wear glasses.

2. Are you planning to become one? (I'll respond to this in the past tense, given my previous answer)

The label of polyglot is a description attached to me following many years of dedication to studying, and love
of, languages. There was always an intention to study many languages, so in that sense, yes, I did want to
be a polyglot. However I never had a desire to be called a polyglot, if that makes sense. The first time I
came across the term was when someone described me as such.

3. If you are, what are you planning to achieve before you can call yourself a polyglot? (again past tense
here)

I had a list of languages, like many learners, which I wanted to study. However this was not linked to any
conscious thought of becoming a polyglot per se. An agreed definition of the word is be tough to reach, if not
impossible from what I have seen discussed in the past. I am happy for the individual learner to use
whatever label they feel comfortable with to describe themselves, including not using any labels at all.

As for polyglots looking down on others, this seems rather silly to me. I am aware it exists in many spheres
but I find it simply quite odd. Each of us has strengths and weaknesses and I could not fathom such an idea
myself. That said, I am equally perplexed by those empty vessels, who do indeed make the most noise in
life...




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