Arrogance and Learning English!!!
>>And how often do you hear people communicating in French or Portuguese in a country where neither is the official language and neither person is a native speaker? <<
I'm not sure. My question, then. How often do you hear people communicating in English in a country where it is NOT the official language and nobody is a native speaker? If English were "universal", it would imply everyone should use it. As you have pointed out, however, not everybody uses it. That's why English should not be called "universal" even if many peeple accept it as an auxiliary language.
>><<It will move non-English-speaking peeple away from you, whether deliberately or not. >>
Why?? I still have no idea what you mean.<<
Eventually, you would just comunicate exclusively with peeple who want or need to use English as long as you use it abraud. Non-English-speaking peeple would hesitate to speak to you.
>><<And everybody has been told that English is "universal".>>
Everybody?? Sure about that?<<
If "everybody" is an exageration, I have to say "lots of peeple". We have been told that English is "universal" thru comercial messages that affect peeple in general.
>>As for English being a "universal " language or not -- sure, it's an important language for many people due to economic and political circumstances (sounding like a broken record, yet?), but there are plenty of people who get through their whole lives very comfortably without it, so it's hardly "universal" in the strict sense. And nobody's "forced" to use it. People may find it advantageous to learn it. But people may find lots of different skills advantageous to them, and no one says that hey are "forced" to be mechanics or good cooks or shrewd businessmen.
Most of this flap about English is more about politics than anything else. <<
Yes! You are right, and we might have been too passionate. We must be happy if nobody is forced to use English.
Jean-Christophe Fri Oct 21, 2005 8:59 pm GMT
>>Hello ! Hi ! Bonjour !
I work in a tea shop in Paris. This job implies speaking with customers from all over the world, especially from US.
What is funny about this question of arrogance is that most of these customers do not first speak to me in French and don't even ask "do you speak English?" before asking me further questions: they start speaking to me in English, assuming the fact that English language is worldly understood, assuming that I would be smart enough to get what they want and answer their request in proper English.<<
I fear some non-native speakers of English would be likely to behave in a similar way. They also could be suficiently arrogant.
**In the film Sliding Doors all eyes may have been on the face of the American Gwyneth Paltrow, but all ears should have been on her voice**
Paltrow's English accent...strictly Southern English....strictly RP verging on Sloanespeak...sounds about perfect to me. I'd take her for a native of snooty upper crust Notting Hill anytime. When she speaks in her native American accent it sounds like she's guilty of fraud somehow....some sort of massive let down.
One thing is absolutely certain about GP though.....her popularity ratings in England are practically zilch....although her mouth emits nigh on perfect Standard English English, as well as constant irritating moans and whines and rants (and totally irrational and undeserved comments aimed at English males whom she complains "inexplicably" avoid her like the plague...surprise! surprise!) the general British (well, the English part of it anyway) populace wish she'd button it once and for all...until she takes the Picadilly tube line to Heathrow Airport and buys a single ticket to 3000+ miles Way out West and never to return to darken English doors again.
Whoa! I never hear anything about Gwyneth Paltrow over HERE -- what's she done over THERE to piss you off like that, Damian?
LOL.....I'm not really p.o., Uriel......except with people like GP.
She has made London her home, she married an English guy after slagging ALL English guys big time.... and pissed them off big time.....and she expects London to be a replica of California in every way, complete with wall to wall sunshine all the year round and temperatures to match.....Hollywood facilities in Hornsey and Hammersmith and all points along the Circle and District Lines on the London tube.....pristine clean and tidy streets CA style in one of the busiest and crowded and most cosmopolitan cities in the world (yeah!...like New York City is spotless!) and in between constant whines and whinges and bitching about everything she sees as wrong in a country she has decided to live in and the many advantages and facilities of which she takes for granted and enjoys in grand style.
To make matters worse she did not sound off negatively about the UK in this latest whinge while she was still in this country....she to beat it back America to do it publicly over there in Marie Claire. Sadly she went there on a return ticket...to come back to the country she enjoys living in while enjoying slagging it off.
Of course you won't hear much of GP over there Ureil...she's over here all the time...with her English husband.
As is Madonna....another American prima donna who is probably the most unpopular resident in the entire counties of Wiltshire and Dorset (her Fort Knox style fortified mansion is right on the border of those two counties in the beauteous depths of the English countryside) where she lives in super style and managing to antagonise the native residents in just about every way possible.
What is it with people like these two?
Ah la la !!! Paltrow & Ciccone : encore deux angophobes patentées !... Les faits de société sont carrément d'une très grande complexité au Royaume-Uni, Pissed off Damian !...
On le comprendrait si ces deux femmes ne voulaient pas habiter au Royaume-Uni, Greg, mais c'est un fait qu'elles font et souhaitent continuer aux poux dans ce pays. On ne manque jamais l'occasion de critiquer alors nie le jour suivant qu'elle a critiqué. Elle lesdites mauvaises choses au sujet des hommes anglais alors le moment suivant elle a épousé un homme anglais ! L'autre femme agit comme si elle est la reine de l'Angleterre et pense qu'elle a la puissance d'ignorer des lois locales dans la région de l'Angleterre où elle choisit de rester. Tout le monde dans des souhaits de l'Angleterre qu'elles les deux retour à la rapidité de poste des Etats-Unis..... Pourquoi ne m'étonne-t-elle pas que vous répondriez à mon dernier message, M Greg ? : -)
"Ah la la !!! Paltrow & Ciccone : encore deux angophobes patentées !... Les faits de société sont carrément d'une très grande complexité au Royaume-Uni, Pissed off Damian !... "
There's only one thing in the world that's worse than a Frenchman. And that's a Frenchman who refuses to speak English on an English-only part of the forum.
Why France Is Opposed to Sanctions on Syria: Our Oldest Enemy
"France Says Too Early for Sanctions Against Syria," read the headline of this news article. I agree it's too early, since the final report of the United Nations won't be released until December. But somehow I suspected France meant waiting longer than two months.
"We have here an opportunity to do justice with an independent inquiry. Let's go to the end ... if we need to make it longer, let's do it, and afterwards lets see what the consequences should be, including on the question... of sanctions," stated French Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy. That's right; the French are already asking for an extension, even though the UN hasn't asked for it.
Let's review the facts quickly. Rafiq al-Hariri, former prime minister of Lebanon, was killed along with 22 others when his motorcade was blown up in Beruit last February. The UN probe issued a preliminary report indicating they had evidence of Syrian involvement. Lebanon even froze five accounts they believe are related to the murder. Things aren't looking good for some major Syrian officials.
But again, I wouldn't suggest sanctions before the final report. So why has Bush warned that he would push for them, and why is France already objecting? Because the report also found evidence of massive systematic cover-ups by the Syrian government. So we find ourselves in a familiar situation; see if you can see any analogies:
* A government is widely believed to have conducted something illegal.
* The UN is investigating.
* The UN complains that the government is not cooperating, and writes a letter to the Secretary General asking for help.
* The US tries to apply pressure to force cooperation.
* France objects.
Why would a country that has profited from stealing money from the Oil for Food program, bought oil from Saddam under sanctions, conducted illegal trade with Iraq, and generally profited from Saddam's rule -- why would such a country possibly oppose anything to upset Syria? Maybe because Syria, the former French colony, conducts eighteen percent of its trade with France. That's over a billion dollars worth of exports, and nearly as much in imports, each year. How many French politicians can you buy with a billion dollars? All of them.
French politicians are reliving the past, believing that they are a second superpower that can counter America's influence in the world. As such, the believe anything that hurts America is good for them. Saving a few billion in trade is a cherry on the top.
Really think the French are our friends, deep down? A survey found that twenty-five percent were hoping America would lose the war in Iraq. And President Chirac? Remember in the early 1990's, when Jose Bove destroyed a McDonald's franchise (which he viewed as a symbol of America)? Chirac publicly supported him, claiming "complete solidarity," and even going so far as to say "I detest McDonalds."
France has been a thorn in America's side since the French and Indian Wars of the eighteenth century. Why should we expect a change of heart now?
If you'd like a complete history of America's relationship with France, I recommend Our Oldest Enemy, an excellent book on the subject.
nervous-rodent.blogspot.com . . .
Non, Adam. La pire chose qui soit c'est un imbécile de ta sorte : tu fais mieux (et plus vite) que 100 Français réunis quand il s'agit de ridiculiser le Royaume-Uni. Je te félicite chaleureusement.
And that's why we send 'em to YOU, Damian! ;)
So, what's a pashmina? And wouldn't rain be BAD for cashmere, and make you smell a little like wet goat? And is British weather some sort of well kept secret that she didn't know about? And why wouldn't streets be dirty? They're dirty in California, too. That's what happens when you build them OUTSIDE.
Not to change the subject, but I'd like to go back to the top of this thred. Personally, I don't think Tom was arrogant. I presume he was simply prudent. In those days, he himself must have been in the middle of lerning English ardently. Later, I supose he got proud of himself, but that does not necessarily mean "arrogance".
>>They(students) are full of themselves. They don't like to talk with someone who doesn't have good English skills. Speakers like me are looked down upon.<<
Because they want to keep their English posh? Or because of their personalitys? One thing I am sure is that some lerners prefer to talk with only native speakers to improve their target language, avoiding non-native speakers.
>>Their teachers who also speak good English - they also show so much arrogance to their fellow teachers. I don't know what is that after learning English people start acting like they are kind of super human beings or whatever? I feel so melancholy.<<
You are not among them. You should be proud of yourself, Boy!
Complaining about city pollution is rich coming from GP. She grew up in New York City when it was at its most polluted! Eh, that's just the way she is, I guess. She has always been famous for being a snob.
And Madonna... just when I thought I never had to hear her voice again, last week my alarm clock woke me up with an interview she did about disciplining her kids. In a fake English accent, of course. Ugh. I hope her neighbors in Dorset and Wiltshire are giving her hell, like sending their pets to do their business in her front yard, and whatnot... :P