Is Russian ‘No’ a cause of the negativism?

Once one tutor said me that we, Russians sometimes are too pessimistic, too negative.
I’ve just read an interesting article about huge amount ‘No’ in Russian language and guess this is the cause of the negativism :slight_smile:
This article is written by a person who used to be a translater of Gorbachev. Here it is (in English)

I can add an interesting example, “Switch” in Russian is “выключатель”, sounds like switch for switching off. Why ? Why we don’t have word “Switch” for switching on. It’s so depressing…

English-speaking countries use “Stuff only”, but it is “Не входить!” (do not enter!) in Russia :))

When we ask for directions or the time of day, we do it in a way that contains a negation, so that when some Russians unwittingly transplant the pattern into English it sounds very funny: “Can’t you tell me how to get to Leicester Square?” or: “Can’t you tell me what time it is?” It sounds as if one expects to get no reply, or is being deliberately impolite. In fact, in Russian it’s the opposite: a polite way of putting it.

I have the strong feeling, that in Japanese negative form is used the same way as in Russian…

I agree with Rasana, this kind of negative questioning is quite common in many languages including Japanese.

National stereotypes are fun, and the many people who do not fit the stereotypes do not prevent us from have these stereotypical views of people.

I find Russians very dramatic, much given to exaggeration and hyperbole, at least on Echo Moskvi. Japanese people are more inclined to understatement or so it seems.

On the other hand I find my Russian tutors at LingQ quite mild and understated.

Rasana, I presume you mean “staff”.

Oh, and by the way, you wouldn’t have the time, would you?