Should immigrants stop communicating in their first language

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dipizz

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Jun 26, 2006
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The same as in Spain. I'm Uruguayan an I've lived here for four years. This is also a multicultural country and people speak the language they want to. Of course there's a single vehicular language at school -where I live it's Catalan, but immigrants keep on speaking their own language. I believe that acculturation should not exist. Our world is becoming a multicultural place where cultures mix more and more. This is a reality, and a really great reality.
 

gladrod

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Jul 13, 2006
I totally don't think that people from other countries have to stop talking in their first language, they should continue using their language and learn the language of the new country that they live in. Learning new languages makes you smarter and capable of communicating with people all over the world. I'm bilingual, i speak two languages English and Spanish. My dreams are to learn other languages.
 

Casiopea

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Ny first language is English. When I lived in Japan, I had to learn how to speak Japanese to get by in life. Ex-patriot friends of mine who chose not to learn Japanese had a very hard time getting things done on their own. They were forever dependent on Japanese nationals for help. Morever, they never really got a feel for the culture, or the chance to learn how language holds those good little secrets that help us understand each other's ways of doing things in the world.

I live in China now and I haven't yet taken the time to learn Chinese. I feel so very dependent on Chinese nationals to help with basic things like paying my water bill. :roll: I need to immerse myself in the culture, learn the language, become independent. So many people speak English here in Shanghai, China. How am I ever going to learn Chinese that way? :lol:
 

Ayuda-Tulong

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Language is one of the things in life that should be studied.
The ability to study/learn/communicate in more than one's native language is an ability that should never be stifled.
 

marchwind

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I think perhaps the initial question is badly framed: of course an immigrant can't be expected to stop communicating in his/her mother tongue. What is the heart of the matter is whether the immigrant should be expected to learn the language of the country she has moved to. There is a lot to be said for preserving cultural diversity and remembering one's background, but this should not be done at the expense of adapting to a new cultural situation. An example- but simply one among many- can be that of Spanish Americans who move to the USA and can basically live their lives in some states without learning English. They can live in neighbourhoods where people speak only Spanish, go to Spanish schools, watch TV channels and read newspapers in their language, but ultimately, the children of these immigrants are cut off from better jobs by their poor understanding of the English language. This happens with only a small percentage of Hispanics, but it doesn't help them to blend in with the rest of the society. As the original question read "in the U.S" we are talking about what was once a "melting pot" situation and is now becoming a fiercely individualistic society where few are willing to give up anything for the collective good. Obviously speaking another language is enriching, but the immigrant should be open to the language and culture of the host nation as this is also in his best interest.
 

frieda

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Feb 25, 2007
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I think they shouldn't. Why do you ask such a question are you afraid of something? When i was living abroad with my parents, as a child,i continued to speak my mother tongue and that was good, because you continue to keep in tough with your roots.;-)
 

mlc

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Jul 20, 2005
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I still hold to the old-fashioned notion that if at all possible, you should be speaking the language of the majority while in public. To do otherwise is akin to whispering to the person next to you while visiting. It's not polite. The key phrase is, if at all possible. If people made an attempt to use English when they could, they would learn more. Where I teach, I see students speaking their native tongue all day to their friends and only attempt to use English when speaking to teachers or store owners. They learn limited English but it's a slow process and, in many cases, despite being bright students, many will not realize their dreams of going to university.

That being said, I'm in complete favour of keeping your native tongue too! My mom's family practised both their native tongue and English in their home to be sure that they could be successful in the new country and retain their culture. It worked very well.
 

Maeg

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May 27, 2007
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Its totally necessary to learn the language of the country where you are living but i think it's a mistake to forget your mother tongue.

I think that it's what it happens in the USA with the spanishamerican people who go there for a better life.

Tell me if i'm wrong, please.
 
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