another book help question, this time: language

hola comrades.
this is a super quick one and i’m hoping it’ll make the rounds and reach you linguists, non-english speakers, and other geeky academic types who know about these things. these were a couple of the comments that came back from the last round…

Sara Schenström: I wrote a comment that I had put much thought into, and then I read some of the comments, and they were so much more intelligent, so I changed my mind. I think it’s true that begging is when there’s no Plan B, or maybe it IS Plan B, or Plan F, after all other plans didn’t work out.

But then I also believe that “begging” is a word that means something shameful in our society. It has become the word for those who couldn’t handle and/or accept society’s rules, and it implies that they are outcasts. (I don’t agree, but that’s what I think the word means in our society.)

Some thoughts on language: English is not my native language, and I’m really not an expert, but, “To beg” in english COULD mean a more intense way of asking. In Swedish that would be “Att be”. (Which could also mean “To pray” for some reason…) And then we have “Att tigga” which is a phrase only used for people who are asking because they are poor. To say that someone “tigger” could be used to ridicule someone.

Benni Yang: I’m from austria and we learned that asking is “um etwas fragen” and beggin “um etwas bitten”. I know that both words are an expression of wanting something, but the level of desperation in begging is more.

Anne Chargois: in french, it could be “what the difference between “demander” et “supplier”.
“demander” : “hey guys, can you do this for me, please ? we’re friends and i need you for this or that. if you can’t, that’s ok, i’ll find another way…”
“supplier” means you are desperate. it means weakness. and involved “pitié”. (= pity)
if someone is begging me, i feel sorry for him/her. even i decide to help him/her, it breaks my heart. because he (she) is broken…

and this makes me definitely want to explore more….


who knows good stories/idioms/turns of phrase around “asking” in OTHER LANGUAGES that might tell us something about those cultures and how “asking” is viewed?

hit me. this is wide open: just reach into your brain and go…anything having to do with LANGAUGE and the idea of asking/exchange/gift-giving/crowdfunding…etc etc



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