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締切り済みの質問

language and empathy?

Learning a language is a difficult thing to do. You need to memorize a plethora of words, some of which are simply not-translatable, and some are false cognates. Learning grammar, especially when it's completely different from that in your first language, can make you question the grammar rules of your mothertongue, or even make you start making grammar mistakes when speaking your first language (something that's happend to me, for example, I blame it on the fact I can speak several languages to some extent). However, I don't think that's everything it takes to learn a language. If it were the only things required, that would mean you (just) need to be intelligent enough (as intelligence is the ability to recognize and replicate patterns), but there are many people who are inarguably intelligent, yet they aren't able to learn languages, so there must be something else.

I remember that I loved watching videos in English back when I was a little child. I didn't understand squat of what the actors were saying, but through their acting, I could deduce what emotion and intention they had when speaking some words. I still remember the first English phrase I learned this way: "trust me". But to be able to get yourself into the mind of someone who's speaking, to feel their emotion and intention, you need to have empathy. I'd even say a higher than average level of empathy. It is, after all, the trait that allows you to imagine what the others feel, based on their body language, intonation, and all other non-verbal ways of communication.

The tiny differences in meaning between different grammatical structures and word combinations all come down to what meaning the person wanted their words to convey, and this is closely related to their emotion and intention. "You're always losing your keys" does not mean you literally mean somebody always loses their keys, it's more of a complaint. "We could've had it all" indicates regret, seeing the situation as a missed opportunity, something that "we could have it all" doesn't convey. If you don't have enough empathy to feel these emotions, you can't understand these differences, or at least it won't be natural for you to use the same structures yourself and, therefore, you aren't able to truly learn the language. Understanding jokes, sarcrasm, irony, poetry, and metaphors is an indication that you've learned the language, on the emotional level.

Anyways, this is how I see it. What do you think?


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Artist of https://www.mangazuki.online/manga/kimi-wa-midara-na-boku-no-joou/

投稿日時 - 2019-07-19 23:10:05

QNo.9637119

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回答(1)

ANo.1

いずれにしても言葉を用いたコミュニケーションによって相手の意図を完全に理解することはできません。これは母国語が同一であってすらいえることで、下地となる根本概念が異なる異文化異言語のコミュニケーションにおいては特に顕著となることでしょう。
また逆に質問文で述べられている共感というスキルは非常に重要であり、あるいはこれによってのみ相手の意図を完全に理解することができる可能性はあるかもしれません。
しかしまた一方でそもそも相手を完全に理解する必要そのものがないとも言えます。ボディランゲージによってある程度の感情を理解できるといわれている通り、本来的にはその程度の理解で留めておくのが良いのかもしれません。

投稿日時 - 2019-07-20 00:37:02

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