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Old August 10th, 2008, 11:14 AM   #21
*** Dr. Stein ***
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Why do students like the lectures in Belarusian better?
Is it because they feel more comfortable with Belarusian?
I think so. As for me, I'm just enjoy listening Belarussian words wherever they said. And at that lections I'm feeling something like proud of my native language, which can be succesfully used in such difficult science field.

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So basically in Belarus there is a high degree of bilingualism, with Russian being predominant in the cities and Belarusian in rural areas, and there's various degrees of mixing between the two languages. Am I right?
I think, you are. In my opinion there is about 95% russian-speaking citizens in Minsk. 5% belarussian-speaking is formed by some students, culture figures and oposition leaders. As you can see, it is rather difficult to hear belarussian speech at the streets of our capital. It is very sad.
In rural areas, in my observation, people usually haven't good education and they often use horrible mix of Russian and Belarussian. Urban people mockingly call this pseudo-language "trasyanka" ("trasca" == swamp, quagmire). It is not literary Russian, not literary Belarussian, in general it is gramaticaly and phoneticaly incorrect.

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Old August 10th, 2008, 01:31 PM   #22
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Makasih

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Originally Posted by *** Dr. Stein *** View Post
In my opinion there is about 95% russian-speaking citizens in Minsk. 5% belarussian-speaking is formed by some students, culture figures and oposition leaders. As you can see, it is rather difficult to hear belarussian speech at the streets of our capital. It is very sad.
In rural areas, in my observation, people usually haven't good education and they often use horrible mix of Russian and Belarussian. Urban people mockingly call this pseudo-language "trasyanka" ("trasca" == swamp, quagmire). It is not literary Russian, not literary Belarussian, in general it is gramaticaly and phoneticaly incorrect.
Thank you Dr. Stein. I think the linguistic situation of Belarus is quite unique in Europe.
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Old August 10th, 2008, 08:29 PM   #23
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Not at all. I'll answer any question about Belarus with great pleasure!
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Old August 20th, 2008, 05:02 AM   #24
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Burislav's informative post

Here's a very interesting post by Burislav:
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Originally Posted by Burislav View Post
I'm not sure about asian republics. But I know that Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Moldova, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania had mostly retained their languages, at least in their homes. Largely because 1. it is easier to russify ukrainians and belarusians because russian is also to an extent a slavic language 2. it was a state priority to russify Ukraine and Belarus by mass migration and a genocide of the 30's. Russification through migration failed in Moldova and the Baltics, there russians ostracized themselves from the rest of the population, while in Ukraine and Belarus they intermarried (my mothers sister in Minsk married a russian migrant from Siberia, the same with some of my relatives in Ukraine, for instance).

Russification of Belarus was 90% complete by 1990, wherein in Ukraine it was approximately 70% complete. Since Lukashenko's rise to power in Belarus, russification was continued and accelerated, the last Belarusian-language lyceum in Minsk was closed and transformed into a high security prison few years ago. They only learn Belarusian like a distant foreign language now, the Belarusian language class meets 2 times a week so it creates an illusion of protecting the language. Today russification of Belarus is complete, only very few intelligentsia youth use Belarusian (almost entirely from opposition), but even they only use it in formal situations, almost never when they socialize.

When my mother was growing up in Minsk in 1970's the language was ostracized from city dwellers and was only used periodically in a mix with Russian in the rural areas surrounding the city. The mix of Belarusian and Russian is referred as Trasyanka.

People still know the language, but it is socially unacceptable to use it in Belarus, while russification of Ukraine was mostly stopped by early 2000's (today, about 80% of all schools are ukrainian in Ukraine). But the fact remains is that millions of people of my generation and even one or two following generations in many cases will and do speak a foreign language as their first.
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Old August 20th, 2008, 05:06 AM   #25
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Thank you. I might have been wrong about the last belarusian school being transformed to prison in Minsk, I heard this from a Belarusian acquaintance of mine. Everything else is my opinion based on research and observations, if any of it in regards of Belarus is wrong, Belarusians should feel free to correct it. My cousins in Minsk only learned Belarusian as second-language (like we learn English or German in Ukraine).

The way I see it now is that during the last years situation with Belarusian stopped deteriorating as opposed to mid and late 90's.
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Old August 20th, 2008, 04:42 PM   #26
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Thank you. I might have been wrong about the last belarusian school being transformed to prison in Minsk, I heard this from a Belarusian acquaintance of mine.
Not in a prison. In Court.
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Old August 20th, 2008, 06:16 PM   #27
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Understanding of Belarusian

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Originally Posted by *** Dr. Stein *** View Post
In my opinion there is about 95% russian-speaking citizens in Minsk. 5% belarussian-speaking is formed by some students, culture figures and oposition leaders. As you can see, it is rather difficult to hear belarussian speech at the streets of our capital.
In spite of that, does everybody understand Belarusian?
Would you say that 95% of the population understand Belarusian even though 95% of them speak Russian?
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Old August 20th, 2008, 06:22 PM   #28
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belarussian and russian languages so close, that russian-speaking who never heard belarussian could understand belarussian language.
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Old August 20th, 2008, 07:03 PM   #29
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Bahasa Belarus

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belarussian and russian languages so close, that russian-speaking who never heard belarussian could understand belarussian language.
Perhaps rather Trasianka?
Are Russians in general able to understand the Belarusian with no strong Russian influence?
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Old August 20th, 2008, 07:18 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by xolang View Post
In spite of that, does everybody understand Belarusian?
Would you say that 95% of the population understand Belarusian even though 95% of them speak Russian?
Yes, absolutely. And croomm is incorrect, Russians usually don't understand much of Belarusian, they think that when they hear trasyanka that it's Belarusian. Trasyanka, in my encounters, is 90% Russian.
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Old August 21st, 2008, 12:58 PM   #31
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>>Are Russians in general able to understand the Belarusian with no strong Russian influence?

Of course yes. Russians able to understand classical (but classical is not correct, because this languages was formed in 19 century by political motives) belarussian and ukrainian. So called
"classical" ukrainian and belarussian is a very close to russian. Some Belarussian trasyanka and ukrainian surzhik are the mix of russian dialetcs. So it understandable in 100% both for russian, ukrainians and belarussians people. If some ukrainians can not understand belarussian, it can be explained by low level of education in modern Ukraine.
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Old August 21st, 2008, 06:26 PM   #32
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croomm, every single statement you made is incorrect, try not to confuse foreigner here who want to learn something.
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Old August 21st, 2008, 06:35 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by croomm View Post
>>Are Russians in general able to understand the Belarusian with no strong Russian influence?

Of course yes. Russians able to understand classical (but classical is not correct, because this languages was formed in 19 century by political motives) belarussian and ukrainian. So called
"classical" ukrainian and belarussian is a very close to russian. Some Belarussian trasyanka and ukrainian surzhik are the mix of russian dialetcs. So it understandable in 100% both for russian, ukrainians and belarussians people. If some ukrainians can not understand belarussian, it can be explained by low level of education in modern Ukraine.
Before that barbarian so called "russian" language was created everyone spoke Ukrainian so youre propaganda is absolutely incorrect!
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Old August 21st, 2008, 06:38 PM   #34
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Burislav, every single statement you made is russophobian.

I am really don`t care what foreigners thinks about Russia)) But you are first specialist in all themes which touch Russia and Russians) I really think that you have a great problem with physical. Try to relax and go to vocations. Good luck my malorussian bro)

PS xolang, ask it another russian and you will get the same answer. And don`t touch ukrainians... Remember, that Chernobyl situated in 100 km from Kiev)
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Old August 21st, 2008, 07:07 PM   #35
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berbakat bahasa

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PS xolang, ask it another russian.
I'll do that.

On a side note, perhaps you're just one of those people talented in languages?
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Old August 21st, 2008, 08:12 PM   #36
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Quote:
In spite of that, does everybody understand Belarusian?
Would you say that 95% of the population understand Belarusian even though 95% of them speak Russian?
Some days ago a strange incident happened in one market of Minsk. One woman asked the salesman about his goods. The question was asked in Russian. The salesman answered her in Belarussian (classical Belarussian). Was she so stupid or she just decided to show him what language must be used in our country - who knows - so she complained to the market manager on this salesman that he spoke with her on some "unknown language". So the salesman was fined by market direction because of his "disrespectfull" attitude to the clients.
This incident was described on www.charter97.org

I think that most of Belarussian citizens (even russian-speakers) could understand Belarussian. Even classical Belarussian. But not everebody would be pleased if you will speak with him in it. Some people (in general "komunists on pension" or pro-facistic organization's members) consider that Belarus is only a part of great Russia, not more. That we've no our own history, culture, literature. And they consider Belarussian language is one of great number dialects of Russian language. Fortunatelly, there are very few people who think so.

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Are Russians in general able to understand the Belarusian with no strong Russian influence?
I think, they are, but not completely. Some words or phrases they may be won't understand, but in general, the main sense of sentence will be clear.

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Old August 21st, 2008, 09:10 PM   #37
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I hate to interrupt this discussion, but I just happened on to this site and thought someone here might be able to help me. I am an American City Planning student and I've been staying in Minsk for the summer. I am trying to find a few people to visit with about how City and Regional Planning works here in Belarus. I realize that isn't the main point of this site, but hopefully it's related enough that someone might be able to recommend a good contact (either another poster here, or someone in Belarus). Any tips or info at all would be great.

I can't add a lot to the language discussion, though it is a somewhat popular topic here too. I can verify that there are elementary schools that teach in Belarusian (I met a family whose children go there right now), but I'm not sure of the details, and it seemed to be a rarity. Also, many of the announcements on the busses and metro are also in Belarusian, but not all, which is confusing for someone just learning Russian.

Thanks for any help,
Ed
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Old August 22nd, 2008, 12:28 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by *** Dr. Stein *** View Post
Some days ago a strange incident happened in one market of Minsk. One woman asked the salesman about his goods. The question was asked in Russian. The salesman answered her in Belarussian (classical Belarussian). Was she so stupid or she just decided to show him what language must be used in our country - who knows - so she complained to the market manager on this salesman that he spoke with her on some "unknown language". So the salesman was fined by market direction because of his "disrespectfull" attitude to the clients.
This incident was described on www.charter97.org

I think that most of Belarussian citizens (even russian-speakers) could understand Belarussian. Even classical Belarussian. But not everebody would be pleased if you will speak with him in it. Some people (in general "komunists on pension" or pro-facistic organization's members) consider that Belarus is only a part of great Russia, not more. That we've no our own history, culture, literature. And they consider Belarussian language is one of great number dialects of Russian language. Fortunatelly, there are very few people who think so.
That's a very sad story, my heart feels great pain for the difficulties that Belarusians have to endure in Belarus!
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Old August 26th, 2008, 03:12 PM   #39
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I have some other questions mainly concenring some economic indicators presented by 'great' amercian agency CIA (maybe they are wrong )


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Exports - partners:

Russia 36.5%, Netherlands 17.8%, UK 6.3%, Ukraine 6.1%, Poland 5%, Latvia 4.1% (2006)
I am really curious what Belarus can export to the Netherlands? It's stated that it amounts to 17.8% so for Your ecomony it's a lot but I cannot imagine anything which can hide beside this number: maybe food? (but rather the Netherlands are exporter), reexport of oil? (but why from Belarus not directly form Russia), weapons?, alcohol ( ok I am joking)

what else can Belarus export to the Netherlands and why not at the same time to the other larger western european countries?


another more scary thing, some data comparison from Polish and Belarussian economy

Quote:
Poland
budget
revenues: $85.25 billion
expenditures: $91.37 billion (2007 est.)

GDP (official exchange rate):$420.3 billion (2007 est.)

polish government expenditures in overall GDP: 21%

Belarus
budget
revenues: $20.76 billion
expenditures: $21.18 billion (2007 est.)

GDP (official exchange rate): $44.77 billion (2007 est.)

belarus government expendiutres in overall GDP: 48%
with almost 10x times smaller overall GDP, Belaruss has just around 4x smaller government spending. Polish government expenditures amounts to 21% of our GDP while in Belarus it's around 50%... :/ that's pretty much scary becasue if Your government will stop spend more money than Your economic growth will vanish.

The pics from Belarus I have seen on this forum are amazing but aren't You afraid that it will collapse?
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Old August 26th, 2008, 03:31 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piotrek_409 View Post
I am really curious what Belarus can export to the Netherlands? It's stated that it amounts to 17.8% so for Your ecomony it's a lot but I cannot imagine anything which can hide beside this number: maybe food? (but rather the Netherlands are exporter), reexport of oil? (but why from Belarus not directly form Russia), weapons?, alcohol ( ok I am joking)
This can be oil (reselling) or petrol. Or potash fertilizer. But I doubt that this data is correct, Netherlands

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Originally Posted by Piotrek_409 View Post
with almost 10x times smaller overall GDP, Belaruss has just around 4x smaller government spending. Polish government expenditures amounts to 21% of our GDP while in Belarus it's around 50%... :/ that's pretty much scary becasue if Your government will stop spend more money than Your economic growth will vanish.

The pics from Belarus I have seen on this forum are amazing but aren't You afraid that it will collapse?
This is what is called belorussian economic wonder. In other words - market socialism That's why we've got such small unemployment and that's why we still produce so much of noncompetitive trash. Almost every big company in Belarus is goverment-owned, so the goverment is responsible for the most of GDP. No wonder that the goverment spending is so big.
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