For example, I know a tiny bit of French from school, and when I read something like: “Le Brexit, une longue et difficile séparation”, I automatically translate it to English. For non-native English speakers, are you translating Lemmy into another language to think or do think in multiple languages?

@Niquarl@lemmy.ml
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22 urte

As a native bilingual speaker, learned French and English at the same time, though doesn’t mean I don’t make mistakes etc, it depends. Maths is French for example but any tech is moslty in English. I’ve never had a computer in French for example so I don’t even always know the work in French. Frustrating when speaking French to be honest.

@Niquarl@lemmy.ml
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22 urte

As a native bilingual speaker, learned French and English at the same time, though doesn’t mean I don’t make mistakes etc, it depends. Maths is French for example but any tech is moslty in English. I’ve never had a computer in French for example so I don’t even always know the work in French. Frustrating when speaking French to be honest.

@Niquarl@lemmy.ml
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12 urte

As a native bilingual speaker, learned French and English at the same time, though doesn’t mean I don’t make mistakes etc, it depends. Maths is French for example but any tech is moslty in English. I’ve never had a computer in French for example so I don’t even always know the work in French. Frustrating when speaking French to be honest.

@Niquarl@lemmy.ml
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12 urte

As a native bilingual speaker, learned French and English at the same time, though doesn’t mean I don’t make mistakes etc, it depends. Maths is French for example but any tech is moslty in English. I’ve never had a computer in French for example so I don’t even always know the work in French. Frustrating when speaking French to be honest.

@marmulak@lemmy.ml
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12 urte

As someone who speaks multiple languages, the languages do have an independent existence in your brain to a large extent, and they also relate to a more abstract part of your thinking that is language independent. Given that, you can and do use one of your languages without translating the words/sentences into another. It’s also one reason why people who speak two languages well aren’t necessarily good translators, because the act of translation may usually be unnecessary for them, so they let each language live its own life. When you’re forced to translate, you’re like, “Shit but I never thought about how to say this in the other language.”

If it interests you, there’s something in linguistic theory called “deep structure” and “super structure”. This explains it better than I could:

The terms deep structure and surface structure were introduced by Noam Chomsky as a part of his work on transformational grammar. As per Chomsky deep structure refers to concepts, thoughts, ideas & feelings whereas surface structure refers to the words / language we use to represent the deep structure.

What I noticed is that when I hear or read something, usually the “deep structure” is committed to my memory and the “super structure” is thrown away. That’s why for example when I recall something someone has said, I paraphrase what they said rather than produce an exact copy of their words.

What really amuses me about this now that I speak multiple languages is that sometimes I’ll read or hear something in my non-native language and then in the future find that I can repeat the conversation readily in English even though it wasn’t in English. Basically, your brain is stronger at rendering things into your native language, which is probably what you’re talking about remembering in English the things you read in French.

I don’t actually believe people think “in a language”. The language part of your brain is active alongside other, non-language parts that make up your thoughts. They do interact a lot though, so I guess it’s hard for people to believe that thought without language happens.

@Txopi@lemmy.ml
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12 urte

I totally agree!

I’m an Englishman

ufra
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2 urte

So in your head when you’re reading you translate by periodically inserting “smashing”, “right then”, “‘ang on” into the text? 😄

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