Gender pronouns - the singular 'they'

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Re: Gender pronouns - the singular 'they'

#81  Postby Fallible » Jan 06, 2020 10:14 pm

:sigh:
She battled through in every kind of tribulation,
She revelled in adventure and imagination.
She never listened to no hater, liar,
Breaking boundaries and chasing fire.
Oh, my my! Oh my, she flies!
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Re: Gender pronouns - the singular 'they'

#82  Postby Spearthrower » Jan 06, 2020 11:36 pm

I'm not an atheist; I just don't believe in gods :- that which I don't belong to isn't a group!
Religion: Mass Stockholm Syndrome

Learn Stuff. Stuff good. https://www.coursera.org/
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Re: Gender pronouns - the singular 'they'

#83  Postby don't get me started » Jan 10, 2020 12:23 am

Thomas Eshuis wrote:

I've been studying Japanese on and off for about 6 years now.


Good for you.
It's a challenge, isn't it? Apart from the non-correspondence of lexis and grammar with familiar IE languages, and the insanely complicated writing system, it is the pragmatics that is the real killer, in my opinion. A tendency for indirectness, vagueness, unspecificity, loose ends and minimized content utterances embedded within lengthy hedging and deferential speech acts really puts the learner in a difficult position. At least it does so for me. The thing is, in my experience, even Japanese people often don't know what is going on. More than once in a meeting I have whispered to a neighboring Japanese person 'What is he on about?' thinking once again that my Japanese skills are sorely lacking, only to meet the reply, 'No idea!' Sometimes you have to wait a long time before the point emerges.
Here is a video that touches on the issue.





Sorry for the derail in a thread about pronouns and gender...

(Oh, and Spearthrower, loved the non-sexist pirates video. :thumbup: )
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Re: Gender pronouns - the singular 'they'

#84  Postby Thomas Eshuis » Jan 10, 2020 9:00 am

don't get me started wrote:
Thomas Eshuis wrote:

I've been studying Japanese on and off for about 6 years now.


Good for you.
It's a challenge, isn't it? Apart from the non-correspondence of lexis and grammar with familiar IE languages, and the insanely complicated writing system, it is the pragmatics that is the real killer, in my opinion. A tendency for indirectness, vagueness, unspecificity, loose ends and minimized content utterances embedded within lengthy hedging and deferential speech acts really puts the learner in a difficult position. At least it does so for me. The thing is, in my experience, even Japanese people often don't know what is going on. More than once in a meeting I have whispered to a neighboring Japanese person 'What is he on about?' thinking once again that my Japanese skills are sorely lacking, only to meet the reply, 'No idea!' Sometimes you have to wait a long time before the point emerges.

I've found that learning vocabulary and most grammar rules comes quite easy to me. The only exception to this is the numerous variation for counting objects, people, etc.
Writing is the big challenge for me, especially since I've had a couple of long hiatuses in studying the subject.

Re: the indirectness and vagueness, I've encountered that a plenty. We've organised multiple conferences between our Uni and our partner Uni in Osaka. The Japanese students were mostly very passive and consensus oriented. Every-time we asked their opinion on something or where/what we should do, they'd conference with each other and basically not reach a conclusion.

On a related note, when us Dutch members went out for dinner, 2 weeks ago, we were asked if we wanted a dessert and they started exhibiting the same inconclusive back and forth, to which I pointed out that they had become Japanese. ;)

don't get me started wrote:
Here is a video that touches on the issue.





Sorry for the derail in a thread about pronouns and gender...

(Oh, and Spearthrower, loved the non-sexist pirates video. :thumbup: )

:cheers:

*Edit, I actually like the Japanese use of pragmatics.
"Respect for personal beliefs = "I am going to tell you all what I think of YOU, but don't dare retort and tell what you think of ME because...it's my personal belief". Hmm. A bully's charter and no mistake."
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