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Learning English

Postby brianamorgan » Mon Aug 31, 2009 11:45 pm

Hello! Most of the experience I’ve had in English language schools has taught me that learning English must not only be perfected but mastered. But I don’t think one need to master English it is learned proficiently as you practice it along the way. Am I right?
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Postby Stargzer » Tue Sep 01, 2009 12:25 am

I'm not sure what you mean by "perfected" and "mastered."

I've been learning (Amercian) English for over 58 years; I was born to it. I'm not sure what "perfected" means, but "mastered" to me means you know how to speak and write quickly without a constant need for dictionaries or grammar books. However, some British English idioms and slang might give me pause, as might some British vocabulary. I'm sorry, but what they call "lorries" we call "trucks." I've heard the word "lorry" enough to know what it is, as well as "flat," "bonnet," and "boot," but I'm sure if I ever travelled there I'd be just another "Ugly American." (Petrol? Oh, you mean gas(oline)!)

So, I think I have mastered English, as I am not running to a dictionary looking up how to spell every other word or searching grammar book for correct syntax. Now as for French, I think I know just enought to aggravate a Frenchman with my limited vocabulary, my limited knowledge of grammar, and my pronunciation. C'est la vie.

Actually, to truly master a language, I think you need to be able to understand the humor. I get the impression that you are bilingual, so let me tell you a joke:

Q: What do you call a person who speaks three languages?
A: Trilingual.

Q: What do you call a person who speaks two languages?
A: Bilingual.

Q: What do you call a person who speaks only one language?
A: An American!

So, what do you see as the difference between "perfected" and "Mastered?"
Regards//Larry

"To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them."
-- Attributed to Richard Henry Lee
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Postby Slava » Tue Sep 01, 2009 8:56 am

Stargzer wrote:So, what do you see as the difference between "perfected" and "Mastered?"

Mastery of a language is what most of us do in school and in life, as you depict.

Perfection is what great writers do (or at least strive for). In English we might have a James Baldwin, or that quintessential American, Vladimir Nabokov.

Russian - Pushkin, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, etc.

Swedish - Strindberg.

Etc.
Life is like playing chess with chessmen who each have thoughts and feelings and motives of their own.
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Postby Stargzer » Tue Sep 01, 2009 9:33 am

Thomas Jefferson, Mark Twain, Dorothy Parker, Harry S. Truman, Dr. Goodword ...
Regards//Larry

"To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them."
-- Attributed to Richard Henry Lee
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Thu Feb 11, 2010 3:20 pm

Looks to me like the first post was just another
post for the sake of posting an advertisement.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
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