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The Maple Leaf Rag

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Mapleleaf Man

United States

March 1, 2012

One of my friends sent me an article on English and how native English speakers tend to blame people more than people who speak other langauges. If there is a bed broken, for instance, English speakers would say something like, "Bob broke the bed". People who speak some other languages would simply say, "The bed is broken".

This was the first time that I had heard about langauge affecting someone's point of view on life. 

Another article had to do with numbers. Some languages simply don't have or use numbers. There are words such as many or some but nothing to do with five or ten or a thousand. The interesting part of this is that when confronted with four or seven apples, the speakers would say something like, "There are some apples". They had no concept of decimal systems, obviously.  

We are all a product of the language we learn as children. While Chinese learn words from memory, Latin language speakers use an alphabet and phonetics. I'm speaking of writing here, of course. Spoken language is always phonetic, I think. 

The point of all of this is that culturally we are all different. That's well known, right? What we might not think about is how our language affects the way we think and how we view the world.    That might be something to keep in mind when you are dealing with people that you would call foreigners. 

Thanks for reading! Questions and comments are welcome. 

More entries: A New Year, New Ways to Learn (2), English sucks...but don't give up. (6), Learning English is never easy, but it's worth the effort. (3), Easy English Stories, English vocabulary - another way to learn (1), A Shit of Paper (3), Break a leg - another English idiom. , Repost: Are all Chinese girls lesbians? (3), How language affects your life. (3), Chinese Writing (5)

View all entries from The Maple Leaf Rag >

07:27 AM Mar 03 2012

akonito

akonito
Philippines

yeah, you're right.. even in workplace it can be seen. Discrepancy is everywhere because of language that is always connected to raciality. Why do some people don't understand that we are all human, having only a different types of living? Why can't we be united so that we can live in a peaceful world and a peaceful mind? Can we? 

06:45 PM Mar 02 2012

Mapleleaf Man
United States

Thanks again, Manisha.

12:07 AM Mar 02 2012

Manisha Delhi
India

Well said....Since we are from different cultures....People tend to mould the language in their way...such a trouble !!!