How does speaking Italian make you feel?

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How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by serendipity on Mon Oct 21, 2013 10:33 pm

There was a fascinating (considering my geeky superhero power of choice would be ''master of all languages''!) programme on the bbc a couple of years ago hosted by Stephen Fry about language. I think it was called Fry's Planet Word. There was one particularly beautiful part of the programme where people with fluency in more than one language spoke about the different nuances, complexities and emotions their fluent languages gave them.

So, I throw the question(s) open to you... how does speaking the Italian language make you feel?! What does it emotionally give you that English can't? Or vice versa?

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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by ghiro on Mon Oct 21, 2013 11:20 pm

A very good question serendipity. Smile 

Inadequate in my case! Sad   I'm almost fluent in French but still struggle with Italian.  OK I'm pretty good in the bar/bank/restaurant/shop etc but I still struggle when a local involves me in chit-chat.

I think Italian is a beautiful and lyrical language and to speak it fluently would make me feel wonderful.

But will I ever? Question


Last edited by ghiro on Mon Oct 21, 2013 11:21 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Typo)
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Vicino on Tue Oct 22, 2013 7:00 am

It is one of those (many) things I'll never NEVER be able to master, a bit like not being able to play the piano..................I'm just no good at it !

I chit chat to locals, and they seem to understand of sorts, but me thinks that they are being very kind.

V
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Tue Oct 22, 2013 8:35 am

Nervous, but not as bad as it used to be. It was a bit of a shock a month or so ago when I said "what is it called in English?". I had totally forgotten the the English word for something very simple. This was an odd feeling, more so as we have not progressed at all hardly with our Italian and living very rural see few people to speak to... The other is to dream and speak Italian (well very, very limited ).

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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Flip on Tue Oct 22, 2013 11:57 am

I wish I could be fluent, especially when my OH (who is Italian) calls me something inventive, then I would know what particular animals orifice I am being compared with.
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Gala Placidia on Tue Oct 22, 2013 8:22 pm

In my case, I have no difficulties reading and understanding spoken Italian (dialects... are a different thing); however, as it is the case for most people, self-expression is a problem, at least for the first 2 or 3 weeks of my immersion. After that, I become more confident and by the end of my usual stay of 8 weeks, twice a year, in Italy, I have reached a very good level and I feel proud of myself. Practice is the key and not residing permanently in the country does not help.
I am bilingual (French and Spanish) as at home we fluently spoke the two languages, had a bilingual education and at school I also studied Latin and English. Languages are my favourite area of study and I also attended some basic Italian and German courses; however, I did not persevere... Latin has proved very useful as I am very interested in the origin of words and Latin is at the very root of many. I was not very interested in English - although I used to get very good marks - as at the time I could not imagine that circumstances will take me to Australia, where I lived for many years. 

Languages are very important and should be taught from a very young age. Children learn them naturally. It becomes more difficult as we grow older, this is a fact. I would encourage parents to opt for bilingual education, if available.
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Casa Monal on Tue Oct 29, 2013 12:33 pm

How does NOT speaking Italian make US feel?
 

Frustrated Arrow 




But if I could speak Italian, I’d feel very proud Very Happy
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by FBower on Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:31 pm

Although I am pretty fluent in Italian, I do get frustrated when speaking to people who don't know me. They assume I can't speak Italian and always turn to my (more Italian looking) husband. Even if I have started the conversation! I am flluent in German and Dutch and when speaking those languages, I start to feel I could pass as German or Dutch but speaking Italian just makes me feel even more aware of being English.My northern European looks can never pass as native to Lazio. On the plus side, it is always amusing when people assume you can't understand what they are talking about....

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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Gala Placidia on Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:47 pm

Perhaps, more than the way you look, this has to do with the traditional male chauvinist attitude that you find amongst many Italians Sexism in Italy
If a n Italian female journalist says it...
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by la alma on Tue Oct 29, 2013 6:28 pm

Speaking Italian transforms me into a completely different person -I'll talk to anyone about anything (imperfectly but with gestures thrown in as well, so hopelessatlanguages OH thinks I'm fluent.) I'm not at all fluent but just enjoy the sensation of communicating in such a beautiful language. I'm much friendlier and more open and smile more, not to mention kisses all round at the drop of a hat. Pity I have to revert to my less than exciting English self really, when I'd much rather read a book than talk to strangers  (or even OH at times).

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Just love it!

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Tue Oct 29, 2013 7:04 pm

la alma wrote:Speaking Italian transforms me into a completely different person -I'll talk to anyone about anything (imperfectly but with gestures thrown in as well, so hopelessatlanguages OH thinks I'm fluent.) I'm not at all fluent but just enjoy the sensation of communicating in such a beautiful language. I'm much friendlier and more open and smile more, not to mention kisses all round at the drop of a hat. Pity I have to revert to my less than exciting English self really, when I'd much rather read a book than talk to strangers  (or even OH at times).
Just love it! Superb!!! (hopelessatlanguages reads hopeless at languages - yesMySpaceBarSticksAlso)

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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by la alma on Wed Oct 30, 2013 11:02 pm

Didn't stick. I thought it said it all more efficiently as all one word.

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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Thu Oct 31, 2013 9:11 am

Whoops! It was not the space bar bit I thought superb, it was the rest of your wonderful post I loved...

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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Neil D on Thu Oct 31, 2013 12:37 pm

The grammar is very complex.  Italians find English a doodle grammatically but struggle with the pronunciation - you've only got to listen to Italian footballers and managers in the UK struggle endlessly with that.  Italian has different forms of past tense - passato prossimo and passato remoto.  I know what the rules are (I think) but struggle with verb forms for the latter.  In addition, there are regional differences in how these are used.  For some perverse reason, they like to use the passato remoto much more in the South.  The subjunctive is ubiquitous and creates more verb forms to learn.  I decided to make a determined effort to get on top of the subjunctive this summer.  Learning the circumstances in which it is used has proved a daunting task.  As Dante might have said: 'Lasciate ogni speranza, voi ch'entrate.'
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by la alma on Thu Oct 31, 2013 1:05 pm

I'd really like to be fluent enough to play with the language like we do with our mother tongue - innuendo, puns, making one word out of several (!), writing poetry, making jokes. Is that ever really possible in a foreign language? Italians do seem to have a similar sense of humour though. When we put in a glass door with a sort of stable door top, also glass, a neighbour commented cheekily that now we could sell ice cream. I thought that sounded a very English sort of witticism.

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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Gala Placidia on Thu Oct 31, 2013 1:26 pm

Yes, la alma, it is possible to do all what you say in a foreign or second language; however, the person must have achieved a very high level of fluency. Some authors have even managed to write masterpieces in a second or third language as it is illustrated in this article: Writing in other languages
Then, as another example, there is the work of translators, which is not an easy task.
On the other hand, it is a proven fact that speaking foreign languages gives you an even better command of your native tongue.
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Miss Demeanor on Fri Nov 01, 2013 5:41 pm

Mamma says you will know when you are fluent in a second language when you DREAM in that language.

She has been in the UK for many years and has no barrier speaking, understanding, writing, thinking or dreaming in English - her pronounciation is 100% - except for two words..

Wrong is prounouced Wron
Sandwich is pronounced Sangwich

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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Fri Nov 01, 2013 5:54 pm

Nice to see ya back MD... I dream in Italian, but don't understand it!!! Embarassed Embarassed

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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Miss Demeanor on Fri Nov 01, 2013 7:16 pm

Just a flying visit - broomstick is in for a mega service at the moment so I drop by just to keep my hand in.
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Gala Placidia on Fri Nov 01, 2013 8:08 pm

You should have done that before Halloween Twisted Evil
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Miss Demeanor on Fri Nov 01, 2013 8:47 pm

Oggi e' Festa di Tutti i Santi Gala - that's why I'm here.
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Gala Placidia on Fri Nov 01, 2013 9:12 pm

BLessings! Blessings!
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Neil D on Sun Nov 03, 2013 5:49 pm

When I was a student (some decades ago) I took a year out to join some University friends who were doing an Italian degree.  We shared a flat in Rome.  One of the girls was a pleasant, very diligent student but a little prim.  We were eating out one evening with some Italian friends and one of them was eating something which took her interest.  He asked her if she wanted a taste.  'Si', she said, in her usual deadpan manner, 'ma solo un bocchino'.   Ah, the pitfalls of language...
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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:19 pm

Sadly I had to look it up on Google... "but only a mouthpiece" was one of the answers... Not too sure you are allowed to put the alternatives.... NeilD I hope you are not going to lower the tone here... Laughing Laughing Laughing

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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

Post by Perlasca on Sun Nov 03, 2013 8:01 pm

Joking successfully in Italian always gives me a huge sense of achievement - particularly since the odds of it going horribly wrong are even higher than my jokes in English Neutral 

I find it always raises a giggle if you use one of the "extra" endings - issimo, -one, -accio etc on an unlikely word - and that's as far as I'm prepared to go in playing with words....

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Re: How does speaking Italian make you feel?

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