200832Re: THEORY: Don't speak my language!
- Feb 2, 20142014-02-03 Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets <tsela.cg@...>:
> On 2 February 2014 17:04, Thomas Ruhm <thomas@...> wrote:I have exactly the same experience, but maybe even worse. Dutch is my
> > I read about the case of Dutch too.
> Having learned Dutch in the Netherlands myself I can explain my experience
> with that one. It's true that when they come across someone who sounds
> foreign, they will automatically switch to English (or German in tourist
> areas ;) ). There are a few reasons for that:
> - The Dutch are very good at foreign languages, especially English and
> German. TV series are broadcasted in original language with subtitles
> rather than dubbing (except series for little children), so they are used
> to foreign languages are often very much at ease with them. They are also a
> practical folk who considers that time is money, and trying to make
> yourself understood in Dutch to someone who is obviously not fluent in the
> language is just inefficient. So they will switch to the mode of
> communication considered more efficient.
> - The Dutch have a bit of an inferiority complex about their language: it's
> just a local language spoken only in a small area of the world (and the
> other areas it's spoken it's as a result of colonialism, which opens its
> own can of worms), so many Dutch people have difficulties coming to terms
> with the idea that a foreigner would even want to learn their language. It
> doesn't fit their worldview, so they can't quite grok it and often don't.
> - Maybe related to the previous point, it's considered polite to speak in a
> way that the guest will understand best, so if it means switching to
> English because 1 person in a company of 10 doesn't understand English well
> enough, then so be it. It goes so far that in many companies across the
> Netherlands, the official workfloor language is English (that's the case at
> my company, but I luckily work in a department which is mostly full of
> Dutch speakers, so I speak mostly Dutch there :P).
> This said, it doesn't mean that it's not annoying. It's been quite a
> challenge for me to learn Dutch because of that behaviour, because as soon
> as I was having any kind of difficulty or my pronunciation wasn't perfect
> people just switched to English (if they didn't switch to English
> immediately upon hearing my name!). Even nowadays, despite me being mostly
> fluent in the language, with hardly any accent at all (I sound Belgian to
> most people ;) ), there are still people who will tend to speak to me in
> English, and carry on in English even after pointing out that I speak Dutch
> well enough to follow them flawlessly! Luckily, those people are rare.
native language, and I've *always* been going to school in Dutch, so
there's no reason at all any Dutch person should address me in English. But
last time I was in the Randstad area (don't remember the city), people
would speak to me (and to the colleagues I was with) in English, just
because they heard we weren't locals.
Yésináne gika asahukúka ha'u Kusikéla-Kísu yesahuwese witi nale lálu wíke
uhu tu tinitíhi lise tesahuwese. Lise yésináne, lina, ikéwiyéwa etinizáwa
búwubúwu niyi tutelíhi uhu yegeka.
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