This is a follow up to a talk I gave on Italian a few years ago with a new take on asking questions and the responses one should give.
Questo è il seguito di un discorso che ho tenuto sull'italiano alcuni anni fa con una nuova interpretazione delle domande e delle risposte che dovresti dare. Italian and English can both pose a question depending on the way one makes a statement. Hence, "I am going home"? or "vado a casa"? depends on intonation. Italian differs from English from in that a sentence can be both a question and an answer at the same time, but English allows you to change the order of the words to make it obvious a question is being asked by changing the order of the words. Hence Am I going home, verb first, must be a question. In both languages there are also words that make it obvious a question [domanda] is being asked and a response [risponsa] is needed.
In entrambe le lingue ci sono anche parole che rendono ovvia una domanda [domanda] viene chiesto e una risposta [risposta] è necessaria.
In English these words are How ,When, Where, What, Who and Why.
How is the most interesting of these as it asks for an explanation of the question in quantitative and qualitative terms, How much and How many, How deep, wide, tall, broad and long. In other words it is a numerative question. How did it happen?
Where is much easier, a position in time and space.
Who is subjective and personal, applied to other people.
What is impersonal and broader, allowing non personal causes.
When is a time specification which further divides into past, present and future.
Why is a reflection on causation.
Which is a question offering a choice of answer
In Inglese queste parole sono come, quando, dove, cosa, chi e perché.
Come è il più interessante di questi in quanto richiede una spiegazione della domanda in termini quantitativi e qualitativi, quanto e quanti, quanto profondo, ampio, alto, largo e lungo. In altre parole è una domanda numerativa. Come è successo? Come è appena?
Dove è molto più facile, una posizione nel tempo e nello spazio.
Chi è soggettivo e personale, applicato ad altre persone. Quello che è impersonale e più ampio, permette cause non personali. Quando è una specifica temporale che si divide ulteriormente in passato, presente e futuro. Perche è una riflessione sulla causalità. Enough of the heavy stuff. Reading through the above several times and once before every Thursday morning will help you to focus on the main reasons for learning other languages. Firstly to communicate with other people on their terms, something English speaking people have been very poor at doing. Secondly to understand our own language better. The rules of languages are universal even if the way the words are put together differ. English and Italian both share a common root in Latin and learning Italian helps to understand and give deeper meaning to our own language.
Exercises and discussion for today. Come? How How much? Quanto? How often? Quanto spesso? Come mai, How come. Come appena, Come successo? How did it happen? Dové? Where is it. Is it here or there? Use la palla as the object. Discuss how many different places can something be in? Up, down, in, out, before, behind, inside, outside, here, there, over here, over there, hiding, in plain sight, under, over and more. All these words we use in English every day and are essential. Chi? Who? Chi e o Chi Sono? Che? What? often used as che cosa [what thing] o che cose but sometimes the word cosa/cose substitutes itself for what. Quando? When? now , in the past or in the future? quando ora, nel passato o nel futuro? Perche?, Why? Sometimes Come mai means the same thing. Why is also the same word as because in Italian which is confusing Quale? Which? offers a choice, una scelta or a selection between answers Pick two of the seven basic questions, and use them in two sentences. Then ask the question to each of the people on either side of you in the group. You should also do your own answers to the questions. All answers should include a rephrasing of the original question.