A German/English challenge

I just found this intriguing quotation. Can you translate it?

Deutsch ist schon deshalb eine gute Sprache, weil in ihr Mensch und Mann nicht das gleiche sind. Diesen Satz übersetzen.
Wolfgang Hildesheimer [1916-1991]; dt. Schriftsteller

Let’s try it:

In German, “human being” (= Mensch) and “man” (= Mann) are not designated by the same term; it is already for that reason a great language.

Here you go:

German is a great language due to the very fact that human being and man are not the same.

I have a new Game made that fun is. Can you with Germanwordorder English write? I find the Results funny, but others have me said, that it ugly is, because German and English together mixed been have. :smiley:

@ColinJohnstone: This is not only a game, this is the method of Vera F. Birkenbihl, a very famous trainer for language learning and learning in general. She calls that method “Dekodieren”, that means literal translations from one language into another. If you search for “dekodieren birkenbihl” you find a lot about her method.

Congratulations to both the winners - although “human being” does not quite cover all that “Mensch” stands for. To achieve that we would still have to use “Man” and “man”, I believe.

@ColinJohnstone: I provide a German/English translation in the same style in beginners’ lessons. It’s quite fun to see the difference in the grammar structure.

Vera F Birkenbihl was a remarkable person and looking at her training and language learning methods is not a bad idea.

Edited for typo.

Können wir auch schreiben Deutsch mit englischer Wortordnung? Für mich, das ist schwieriger. Ich tue nicht wissen warum.

Das bedeutet wohl, dass Du bereits ein Gefühl für Deutsch hast! Glückwunsch!

Oops. I just fell in love with German again.

I assume you meant ‘…with a German again’.

You don’t like German?

Außerdem in English sind du und man das gleiche Wort, that goes me on the bag ! :smiley:

Yeah, it goes on my bag too!

It is very interesting to know about Vera F. Birkenbihl because there is a Russian author with the same idea. His name is Alexander Dragunkin. He also proposes to put the words in Russian in the order used in English, and than it is possible to translate words one by one. It’s just one aspect of his method but it looks very similar to the method by Vera F. Birkenbihl described above.

By the way, it looks too difficult for me to translate from your native language to your modified (in a strange manner) native language and only than to the foreign one. It’s a double work. I personally prefer to use the foreign language without such translations at all.

This kind of decoding doesn’t appeal to everyone. It is kind of fun to do it once in a while. Do whatever works best for you.

I see that Alexander Dragunkin also believes in something like “in order to be able to learn a language, you have first to learn how to learn”, an approach that LingQ clearly supports.

P.S. The guys with their comments “go me nearly on the biscuit” :)) (you see I am much more polite than they are…)

I think it’s more sensible even as an American to translate German to british English, they are much closer to each other than american English (to German), and even speaking German in a british accent sounds passable compared to an american accent in german which is a trainwreck. look at the pronunciation of vowels for an example.

Not really on topic: it’s a great stepping stone for monolingual Americans to hear and pronunciate UK English before undertaking a whole new language. It’s a gateway exercise for the brain before initiating something far more difficult and demanding.

SanneT you’re walking me something from animal on the alarm clock. :))) (Spaß, natürlich!)

“I think it’s more sensible even as an American to translate German to british English, they are much closer to each other than american English (to German),”

I don’t know about that CTNBEH. As far as vocabulary, American English is much closer to the Germanic roots of the language. Phonologically, British English is tearing away from anything before heard, particularly in the south of England.

In fact, I’d wager money that the contrast found in the American accent from its British counterpart was influenced by German. The largest ethnic group in the US by far is German.

There are other factors, too: I speak a New England dialect of English, and I probably know hundreds of German words because of Yiddish influence on the language spoken in the area I was born.

@CTNBEH I can’t stop giggling about the ‘something from an animal’ and ‘walking me’ sounds so much better than ‘go me’… “Groß!” Achtung: this is the other way round, not an insult.

I suppose you are right djvlbass, we can only tell of our personal experiences and form opinions based on these, which are still opinions. geographically my stance is probably more correct. In my opinion the German and Dutch in America is purely American now and drastically conservative compared to Germany and Netherlands, there’s a fancy word that describes this, assimilation or something? German is a whole different being from all English, but i would go from personal experiences, mainly in Berlin, that UK English is much closer to German in tonality, pacing, and overall pronunciation. But then they say Berlinish (German) is more American sounding (there’s less accent), but there’s even a strong middle-eastern influence on Berlin German. there’s too much gray area to make a sweeping statement as with most discussions.

SanneT - this is the other way round, not an insult.

What do you mean? :stuck_out_tongue: Is your name a word play on Sanity or is that a real name?