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Poll: Is there beauty in languages?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 14:10
SITE STAFF
Feb 25, 2008

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Is there beauty in languages?".

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A forum topic will appear each time a new poll is run. For more information, see: http://proz.com/topic/33629


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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:10
English to Spanish
+ ...
I would not deny it Feb 25, 2008

I would not deny that there is much beauty in languages, but I would sure like to see some more substantial topics in these polls, they are becoming extremely pointless.

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Alexey Ivanov  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 00:10
English to Russian
Hear, hear Feb 25, 2008

Henry Hinds wrote:

I would not deny that there is much beauty in languages, but I would sure like to see some more substantial topics in these polls, they are becoming extremely pointless.


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Sonja Kroll  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 23:10
Member (2008)
English to German
+ ...
What a question. Feb 25, 2008

I'd love to state that languages are nasty dull little rats, but it seems I belong to the predictable majority that happens to find beauty in them.
Well, I could throw in that the beauty is somewhat linked to the content after all... Phew!


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Nesrin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:10
English to Arabic
+ ...
How can a translator deny the beauty of languages? Feb 25, 2008

Isn't appreciation of their beauty the starting point for the desire to learn languages and later to become a translator?

Re Henry's point, maybe there's a limit to the number of possible polls on aspects of the translator's profession and daily life?
On the other hand we keep hearing of people who have suggested polls that never appeared (myself included). I think we shouldn't take polls that seriously, they're not going to be used in any scientific surveys, they just happen to trigger interesting discussions, sometimes more, sometimes less.
By the way, it's us Proz members and users who suggest the polls, so if anyone's dissatisfied, feel free to suggest one of your own (sorry, Henry, don't mean to sound aggressive!)


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Charlie Bavington  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:10
French to English
Rather more mundane for me ! Feb 25, 2008

Nesrin wrote:

Isn't appreciation of their beauty the starting point for the desire to learn languages


When I was a lad, it was compulsory to learn a foreign language up to the age of 16. That was my starting point


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Diana Arbiser  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:10
English to Spanish
+ ...
And to second the motion... Feb 25, 2008

Alexey Ivanov wrote:

Henry Hinds wrote:

I would not deny that there is much beauty in languages, but I would sure like to see some more substantial topics in these polls, they are becoming extremely pointless.




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xxxmediamatrix
Local time: 18:10
Spanish to English
+ ...
No. Feb 25, 2008

There's no beauty in language, per se. Language is but a tool - and all too often a very blunt one at that!

The beauty, such as it is, resides in the art of communication - and for those of us who are able to communicate meaningfully in several languages it resides, more especially, in the art of international and intercultural communication.

MediaMatrix


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xxxmediamatrix
Local time: 18:10
Spanish to English
+ ...
No (again...) Feb 25, 2008

Nesrin wrote:
Isn't appreciation of their beauty the starting point for the desire to learn languages and later to become a translator?


No way! At least, not in my case. I have never 'desired' (nor even 'wanted') to learn any language - including my native English!

It's always been a simple matter of necessity as far as I'm concerned.

MediaMatrix


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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:10
English to Spanish
+ ...
Thanks for the seconding Feb 25, 2008

And I have suggested some substantial topics for polls. I understand I cannot suggest them directly because I am not a member, but I have asked others who are members to put them forth.

So far they have apparently been ignored.


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Hilary Davies Shelby
United States
Local time: 16:10
German to English
Do they just disappear? Feb 25, 2008

Nesrin wrote:

On the other hand we keep hearing of people who have suggested polls that never appeared (myself included). I think we shouldn't take polls that seriously, they're not going to be used in any scientific surveys, they just happen to trigger interesting discussions, sometimes more, sometimes less.
By the way, it's us Proz members and users who suggest the polls, so if anyone's dissatisfied, feel free to suggest one of your own (sorry, Henry, don't mean to sound aggressive!)


What happens to them? Do some of them just never make the cut and get moderated out of existence? None of the ones I've suggested have ever made it...


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Cilian O'Tuama  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:10
German to English
+ ...
Do you use an electric toothbrush? Feb 25, 2008

There's beauty in language alright, if you know how to use it.

Spoilsport Cilian


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Reed James
Chile
Local time: 18:10
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
Of course there is! Feb 26, 2008

...and I find it well worth answering. There are so many words and phrases and intonations in several languages and dialects that I could listen to all day.

I especially like listening to languages I do not understand well or do not understand at all and just listen to the "music" in them.


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xxxLia Fail  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 23:10
Spanish to English
+ ...
why can't we choose? Feb 26, 2008

Hilary Davies wrote:

Nesrin wrote:

On the other hand we keep hearing of people who have suggested polls that never appeared (myself included). I think we shouldn't take polls that seriously, they're not going to be used in any scientific surveys, they just happen to trigger interesting discussions, sometimes more, sometimes less.
By the way, it's us Proz members and users who suggest the polls, so if anyone's dissatisfied, feel free to suggest one of your own (sorry, Henry, don't mean to sound aggressive!)


What happens to them? Do some of them just never make the cut and get moderated out of existence? None of the ones I've suggested have ever made it...



Ooops, I should say, why can't "members" choose which quick polls are run?

I see lots of polls that are a waste of space and the VERY rare odd one that fires the imagination with its beauty, relevance ....


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Amy Duncan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 18:10
Portuguese to English
+ ...
In defense of the pollster... Feb 26, 2008

I liked this question, and I don't think it's pointless or silly. To me, perhaps because I'm a musician, the beauty of languages lies in their sound...nuances, rhythm, certain ways of pronouncing things. I love languages, and have chosen certain ones to study mostly because of the way they sound: Russian, Spanish, French, Japanese, Portuguese... well, to be honest, I never really "studied" Spanish and Portuguese all that much. I learned them mostly by talking with people when I lived in Mexico and Brazil.

Some languages I don't find so beautiful, but that's such a personal thing, like enjoying certain styles of art. My ear doesn't enjoy the sound of German, or of Portuguese spoken in Portugal (no offense meant!). Greek also doesn't really turn me on, but I love the sound of Italian...also Chinese.

Amy

[Edited at 2008-02-26 02:47]


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