• Evkob
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    1 month ago

    Once, I was in a sandwich shop in the Netherlands, ordering in English (as I don’t speak Dutch). The fellow behind the counter had excellent English. When he heard my friend and I speak to each other in French, he switched to French, and it was nearly as good as his English.

    That’s a guy working in a sandwich shop, speaking at least three languages rather fluently. Heck, he probably speaks a bit of German too, seeing as we were close to the border with Germany. It blew my mind as a Canadian who’s used to people being stubbornly unilingual.

    Speaking more than one language is so cool. It’s good for your brain, it helps one understand the structure of language better, it opens up doors to new cultures and ideas. I truly don’t understand why so many anglophones (and, if I’m being honest, a good number of francophones in Québec) are so opposed to the idea of bilingualism.

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    Une fois, j’étais dans une shop à sandwich aux Pays-Bas, passant ma commande en anglais (étant donné que je ne parle pas le néerlandais). Le gars derrière le comptoir parlait très bien l’anglais. Quand il a entendu mon amie et moi parler français ensemble, il a changé à un français presque aussi bon que son anglais.

    C’est un gars qui fait des sandwich, qui parle couramment un minimum de trois langues. Crisse, il parle probablement aussi un peu l’allemand vu qu’on était proche de la frontière avec l’Allemagne. Ça m’a ébloui en tant que canadien•ne habitué•e aux gens qui s’entêtent à ne parler qu’une langue.

    Parler plus qu’une langue, c’est tellement cool. C’est bon pour le cerveau, ça t’aide à mieux comprendre les structures de la langue, ça ouvre des portes à de nouvelles idées et cultures. Je ne comprend réellement pas pourquoi tant d’anglophones (et, pour être honnête, un bon nombre de francophones du Québec) sont si opposé•es à l’idée du bilinguisme.

    • Catoblepas@lemmy.blahaj.zone
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      1 month ago

      The area and time I grew up in had zero non-English classes until high school! Literally just skipping the most beneficial periods of language learning. It was only required that we take 1 year of a foreign language to graduate, and that’s not really enough time to be proficient (or it wasn’t the way we were taught, anyway).

      I’ve been casually learning Spanish for the past few years, and doing it on your own as an adult without paying for courses is hard, especially if your native language is in a different language family. I can definitely understand why people who emerge from the school system monolingual just stay that way.

    • Omniraptor@lemm.ee
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      1 month ago

      might have something to do with being a (former) colonial empire and having a habit of looking down on other cultures. I’m Russian and we have the same problem

    • Revan343
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      28 days ago

      I think part of it is the English/French rivalry here; I’m in Alberta and I know more people who can speak Spanish than French.