Linguistic fever around the ambivalent term “pansexual” illustrates 50 shades of perverts in the Western world for whom one may find a cozy place under the generalizing epithet “queer-ass motherfucker”:
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May 21. 2019 The NYT is worried about sexual abuse in the Ukraine: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/19/world/europe/ukraine-sex-abuse-miitary-war.html?fbclid=IwAR1K46i8T327dMEdXESaRsrGSifmZE8cLErHs_qGNo0mvCGlQ_ra0qxVj1M
Sexual abuse does not have an equivalent in Russian or Ukrainian that indicates the little place we attach to such awful things as "sexual abuse".
A disgusting piece that shows clearly how the NYT is divorced from the Ukrainian reality. Culture gap or the lunatic fringe?
It is idiotic to speak about sexual abuse when the country is losing its population at the cosmic pace!!!
May 17, 2019 A piece of awkward syntax of the original is dealt with quite efficiently in the Russian translation that offers a change in the FSP of the original (the FSP is a functional sentence perspective that establishes the "Theme - Rheme" relationship):
Will Volodymyr Zelenskiy fare any better than those who failed before him? His outsider status certainly gives cause for optimism, albeit of the heavily guarded variety. Indeed, it says much about the scale of public contempt for the Ukrainian political classes that Zelenskiy’s complete lack of experience is also his strongest recommendation.
Окажется ли Владимир Зеленский лучше тех, кто потерпел неудачу до него? Его положение человека со стороны, безусловно, дает повод для оптимизма — хотя и весьма острожного. Действительно, то, что полное отсутствие опыта у Зеленского также является самым главным качеством, говорящим в его пользу, ярко свидетельствует о масштабах презрения общества к украинским политическим классам.
May 13, 2019 One of the reasons for ambivalence is the inability to achieve clarity in one’s speech:
"Tolstoy expressed himself very clearly and had, moreover, unique powers of self-expression – a good deal more than the majority of his commentators. Like most really great men, he meant what he said and said what be meant."
The inability to arrive at clarity is the quality that stands behind the regret of the old French governess in the magnificent novel "Rudin" by Turgenev:
"Quel dommage que ce charmant garcon ait si peu de ressources dans la conversation…"
May 11, 2019 In September he returned to Spasskoye, and on 25 October, three days before his 41st birthday, he completed On the Eve. The novel he had been thinking about for six years was written in less than three months. But his misgivings were suddenly overwhelming. He questioned every element of the book and became convinced that the entire structure was in some mysterious way faulty. He sent it to Countess Lambert, to whom he had promised to dedicate the novel. Her judgment was unequivocal: she hated it. And, in case he doubted her verdict, she got her husband to provide an identical second opinion.
The author built a fire in the drawing room of his St Petersburg apartment. In his hand he held the manuscript, written in a notebook given to him by Viardot, with the words "May I bring you luck" written in her hand on the cover. Had Annenkov not arrived then, this literary gem might have been lost for ever. He rescued the manuscript from the fire, and with it Turgenev's confidence. This must be partly why, in his last years, Turgenev wrote that the dearest people to him were the Viardot family, Gustave Flaubert and Annenkov.
May 7, 2019 A phenomenon related to "post-truth" is "dzhynsa": A homegrown disinformation phenomenon emerged in this murky information environment long before Russian disinformation gained traction. Reporters Without Borders defines the phenomenon, known as dzhynsa, as “material…aimed to improve or create a positive image of a political party, politician, or other individuals… which is not marked as advertisement in a way understandable to the audience.” In short: Ukrainian television is a web of oligarchic influence, and much of the content it airs patently seeks to amplify that influence.
May 3, 2019 Words can sometimes backfire:
As a relatively new defence secretary, Gavin Williamson once said that Russia should "go away and shut up".
Well, the prime minister has told him to go away because in her view, he did not shut up.
May 2, 2019 One of the chapters of Stephen Lendman's book "Flashpoint in Ukraine" is called "The Odessa massacre". Today Ukraine remembers the tragedy when dozens of people were burnt alive: "Police stood by and did nothing. They conspired with fascist killers. So did Odessa firefighters" (Stephen Lendman. Flashpoint in Ukraine).
May 1, 2019 The first thing to get to know for a linguist is that 7 109 of langages spoken on this planet are organized into a hierarchy in which only 85 belong to the so called vehicular languages that are dominating in the sphere of culture, business, technology, medicine and travel. About 1000 are on the brink of extinction.
THE FIVE BEST LANGUAGES TO LEARN FOR BUSINESS IN A CHANGING WORLD:
April 27, 2019 Has any Western news outlet reported, say, these ten true statements? That's a rhetorical question that shows Western news discourse as BIASED.
1. People in Crimea are pretty happy to be in Russia. 2. The US and its minions have given an enormous amount of weapons to jihadists. 3. Elections in Russia reflect popular opinion polling.
4. There really are a frightening number of well-armed nazis in Ukraine. 5. Assad is pretty popular in Syria. 6. The US and its minions smashed Raqqa to bits. 7. The official Skripal story makes very little sense. 8. Ukraine is much worse off, by any measurement, now than before Maidan. 9. Russia actually had several thousand troops in Crimea before Maidan. 10. There's a documentary that exposes Browder that he keeps people from seeing.
April 23, 2019 After the run-off debate between the contenders in the elections of the Ukrainian President, the incumbant Poroshenko kicked up an ill-advised row over his opponent's use of the noun "rebels" to describe the people of the defiant Donbass. The chocolate king should have known better because it is the term his Anglo-American supervisors have been using for years (and Poroshenko himself used in his Munich speech):
He's got about a month before the inauguration. Then the comedian-turned-president will be faced with a complex in-tray that includes a simmering war with Russian-backed rebels in the east.
April 21, 2019 Russians are fighting the war of words against the U.S. with American words
By David Filipov April 26, 2017
MOSCOW — So much divides the United States and Russia right now, and the list seems to get longer every day: Ukraine, Iran, Syria, North Korea.
But there’s one way in which Russia and the United States are getting closer. It’s how Russian officials are waging a war of words. They’re using the language of American politics to do it.
Take “fake news” (feik nyus ), an expression that regularly appears in the denunciation by Russian officials of American and European news reports. There are plenty of ways to express “fake” in Russian — obman, falshivka, poddelka, utka — depending on whether you’re talking about a hoax, a falsification, a counterfeit or a canard.
But none of those quite captures the modern phenomenon of an industry of made-up websites, tweets and other social media posts that are created by someone and distributed by bots, said Michele A. Berdy, who writes a column about the Russian language for the Moscow Times.
“There was no word in Russian that meant that, so journalists started calling it ‘feik,’ ” Berdy said. Now Russian officialdom has picked it up, and is “trying to claim it and redefine it as ‘fake news about Russia by our enemies within and abroad.’ ”
April 17, 2019 The author of the article may have learnt the art of cracking puns:
A comedian bringing change to one of the largest, and poorest, nations in Europe would be no laughing matter.
Still, he is deplorably misinformed when he speaks about the birthplace of Poroshenko, Timoshenko and Zelensky.
April 13, 2019 The stylistic function of the borrowing "deza" is to make the plans of the enemy unusually malicious, covering the tracks of the author's poorly disguised piece of manipulation:
Putin's words in St. Petersburg were classic KGB "deza" or disinformation operations. He said things that a lot of people want to believe. And thus Putin cleverly frames himself as the good guy.
April 11, 2019 At a meeting with Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven, Russian President Vladimir Putin corrected the translator, jokingly calling him a “bandit.” In particular, speaking of the relationship between Moscow and Stockholm, Putin said that people in business from Sweden are friends. The translator, in turn, replaced this word with the word "partners." “Approximately five billion investments plight into the Russian economy by means of our Swedish friends,” Putin said.
After that, according to the Kremlin’s representatives, Putin addressed the translator: “I told friends, and he [translator] said ‘partners.’ What a bandit,” Putin joked.
Negotiations of the parties took place within the framework of the Arctic Forum in St. Petersburg.
Earlier, on April 9, Löfven quoted Alexander Pushkin’s lines from The Bronze Horseman jokingly speaking about the relations between Russia and Sweden. “The Swede from here will be frightened; / Here a great city will be wrought / To spite our neighborhood conceited,” he said.
Putin, in turn, recited lines from another poem by Pushkin ‘Poltava’: "Hurrah! The Swedes, at last, are broken."
April 7, 2019 Something makes them argue:
Czar Nicholas II: “There is no Ukrainian language, just illiterate peasants speaking Little Russian.”
April 3, 2019 Depending on “Our” or “Their” discourse strategies that mould information into a certain ideological scenario (frame) the spy is presented by a translator as either a «шпион» or a «разведчик». Irrespective of the approach, Richard Sorge was a Soviet James Bond whose services were never truly appreciated by Stalin:
Richard Sorge: the Soviet Union’s master spy
Owen Matthews on the colourful life of a Stalin-era secret agent
Confusing Sorge for two of Sorge’s spies, Stalin dismissed him as ‘a shit’ who ran ‘small factories and brothels’.
Спутав Зорге с двумя агентами Зорге, Сталин пренебрежительно назвал его «зас…цем», который «занимается своими заводиками и борделями».
April 1, 2019 Post-truth politics is a political culture in which debate is framed largely by appeals to emotion disconnected from the details of policy, and by the repeated assertion of talking points to which factual rebuttals are ignored. Post-truth differs from traditional contesting and falsifying of facts by relegating facts and expert opinions to be of secondary importance relative to appeal to emotion. While this has been described as a contemporary problem, some observers have described it as a long-standing part of political life that was less notable before the advent of the Internet and related social changes. As of 2018, political commentators have identified post-truth politics as ascendant in many nations, notably the United States, India, the United Kingdom, Russia, and Brazil, among others. As with other areas of debate, this is being driven by a combination of the 24-hour news cycle, false balance in news reporting, and the increasing ubiquity of social media.
March 31, 2019 The phenomenon of post-truth has been known for ages. Here is how it is represented by Dostoyevsky:
All society — both the inhabitants of the place and those who came down of an evening for the music — had got hold of one and the same story, in a thousand varieties of detail — as to how a certain young prince had raised a terrible scandal in a most respectable household, had thrown over a daughter of the family, to whom he was engaged, and had been captured by a woman of shady reputation whom he was determined to marry at once — breaking off all old ties for the satisfaction of his insane idea; and, in spite of the public indignation roused by his action, the marriage was to take place in Pavlofsk openly and publicly, and the prince had announced his intention of going through with it with head erect and looking the whole world in the face. The story was so artfully adorned with scandalous details, and persons of so great eminence and importance were apparently mixed up in it, while, at the same time, the evidence was so circumstantial, that it was no wonder the matter gave food for plenty of curiosity and gossip.
(Dostoyevsky. The Idiot. Part 4, chapter 9)
27.03.19 Nowadays you are highly likely to run across a reference to "post-truth". Here is one of them:
When snipers massacred dozens of protesters on the streets of Kiev in 2014, Ukraine’s government said Surkov was giving the orders.
Was he really behind all of these events, and more? Most likely not. But the truth was less important than the fact that everyone believed he was. People saw the hand of Surkov directing everything that happened.
23.03.19 One of the Australian languages on the brink of extinction is a language called Guugu Yimithirr, spoken in the north of Queensland, which gave the world the word "kangaroo". It’s also made remarkable by the fact that unlike languages like English, it does not make use of ego-centric positioning systems such as "left" and "right". Instead, all speakers of Guugu Yimithirr have an in-built compass in their brain that allows them to always know where is north, south, east and west. Therefore, they have no need to talk about the "left tap" or the "right tap". Instead, they just refer to the "north tap" or the "south tap".
The New York Times (США): Тургенев оскорблял Россию, но до сих пор щепетильный Кремль превозносит его как звезду русской литературы
17.03.19 In the studies of culture drinking habits have always been regarded as an important factor to take into consideration. Drinking is seen as a sign of masculinity in Kiev. People don’t understand how a grown man could be sober in the evenings or on holiday – they would wonder what was wrong with them.” https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2019/mar/07/where-is-the-worlds-hardest-drinking-city
13.03.19 What counts is the pathetic “if”:
"if it can retain its democracy…if Ukraine succeeds in creating a viable, inclusive, and well-functioning democratic state…if the Russian people witness the creation of a successful Slavic nation in a country which many of them view as part of Russia…If it succeeds in this endeavor…If the largest country in the world with a huge arsenal of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons crumbles into pieces…" Bla-bla-bla...
11.03.19 For years, Kosovo’s ethnic Albanian majority had vied for control of the region against Serbs, who, despite only making up 10% of the population, viewed Kosovo as the cradle of their cultural identity. Kosovars declared their independence from Serbia in February 2008.
The inviolability of frontiers or self-determination? No referendum was required by Western countries for the so called "independence" that can't help triggering off the domino effect...
So why is France investing millions of euros to upgrade the museum near the battlefield in the village of Azincourt in northern France?
The new centre will tell the story of the battle, the weaponry deployed and life in medieval France - and the museum's director, Christophe Gilliot, says it will be a big improvement on the existing exhibition. Perhaps the most striking change is to the statistics used by the centre about the number of troops at the battle.
3.03.19 The North Korean leader won’t buy into the exorbitant compliments Trump lavished upon him:
Kim reportedly was glued to his television as Cohen’s testimony was beamed live to Hanoi, and his “jaw dropped” at the lawyer’s revelations about Trump’s mendacity and unethical business practices, according to the sources.
“Dear Leader became increasingly alarmed about the picture Cohen was painting of Trump,” one source said. “At one point, he turned to the rest of us and said, ‘What kind of lowlife am I dealing with?’ ”
1.03.19 The Académie française, whose members are known as "immortals", has said it has no obstacle in principle to such a "natural evolution" of French. Feminine forms for jobs like prosecutor or firefighter are already often used.
But until recently the academy objected to such changes as "barbaric".
In its report it said "the academy considers that all developments aiming at recognising in language the place of women in today's society can be foreseen, as long as they do not contravene the elementary and fundamental rules of language".
It will now accept, for example, professeure for a woman teacher instead of the masculine professeur.