Polish – the hardest language to learn in the world
What is the hardest language to learn for English Speakers? Take a guess; it is not Chinese or Japanese. It is Polish. Polish has seven cases and Polish grammar has more exception than rules. German for example has four cases all which are logical, seem to have no pattern or rules; you have to learn the entire language. Asia languages usually do not have cases, or at least like that.
Polish – hardest language pronunciation
The Pronunciation is eons harder than Asia language as it usually has long tong twisting consonants. For example a Polish sentence might look like this:
- W Szczebrzeszynie chrząszcz brzmi w trzcinie i Szczebrzeszyn z tego słynie.
- Wyindywidualizowaliśmy się z rozentuzjazmowanego tłumu.
Further Polish people rarely hear foreign speak their language and with no accent or regional variation than pronunciation must be exact or they will have no idea what you are talking about.
So the next time you have heard someone has learned Polish have some respect. Polish is the hardest language to learn. But the truth is I doubt you will hear a native English Speaker, speak Polish beyond a few phrases. Can it be learned? Yes you can How to learn a language like I did. People do, it just takes humility.
Here is my argument that dispels the myth of Asian or other languages the most difficult
The Polish language has a Latin Alphabet, but the free ride stops there. Just how hard is Polish to speak? Well consider this, I have studied Polish most of my life, my parents speak Polish and I lived in Poland for about a decade and my wife is Polish, I have citizenship. Oh and some more, I have a passion for learning and even a nack, yet I would not say I speak the Polish language anything close to perfect. Here is how to a friend of mine learned the hardest language in the world. If I were to study French, Spanish or even Chinese I think I would gain a command of the spoken language that would surpass my ability in Polish perhaps in months. Norman Davies a lifelong champion of Poland has made a similar comments. It is not just the crazy grammar, or pronunciation, it is that the people who use it are so soft-spoken.
- Many people will argue that other languages are more difficult based on some official textbook understanding of linguistics. Hogwash, they ignore the most vital component in this ranking formula, that is the culture where it is spoken. For me it an unbelievable oversight. They perpetuate a paradigm of lies based on skewed weights and measures.
American English vs Polish – the way people speak determines how accessible a language is to being absorbed
Here is a concrete example. If you have ever heard some American coming from a club chances are you heard their rounded American English vocalized all the way from down the street, and that would be the girls, mind you. In contrast Slavic people, maybe because of their experience with communism like to stay in the shadows and conversations are almost in whispers. Or perhaps they are just more modest and there is not such a premium placed on self-assertion. It is very refreshing to be in a group and everyone is not trying to impress the other.
- A linguistic group’s social conventions regarding openness, receptiveness and how people communicate with each other and foreigners, is the most important aspects of language learning. It is eons more important than grammar or the script they use.
Consider this metaphor, it is like comparing a group of friends inviting and welcoming vs an elitist closed club that has little conversation. This is only a metaphor or analogy to convey a point. Where would you learn more? Similarly it is easy to go to the USA or converse with people in English as the English speaking culture is extroverted. That alone makes it a breeze to learn.
In contrast Slavic countries are good people but there is not a lot of boisterous openness. If you try to speak their language they will switch to English. It is just the culture or laugh and switch to English.
If you take a class in the language it is geared toward grammar rules and lessons. This is what they were taught in a post communist Eastern European classical education with a focus on form, than practicality.
It is the culture’s attitude, even is subconscious that determines if a language is child’s play or arduous. Polish are polite and kind but they are not even aware how introverted the culture is, which makes a formidable hurdle for your Broca’s and Wernicke’s area.
Again not that any of this is wrong or bad, it is just an obstacle that many people do not calculate when they are drawing up a list of the hardest languages in the world.
What about pronunciation?
When it comes to pronunciation, I remember when I first started to study Polish, my own family, who understood the context could not make out what I was saying. They were use to me still could not understand me. The Polish ear is not accustom to foreigners speaking their languages so they reject any sound that is not precisely native. This was not the case when I attempted to speak other languages like French, Spanish, Chinese with strangers. Basically when you try to communicate with a Pole and your pronunciation is off by an increment, you will be shut down. Therefore, pronunciation is interdependent on the cultural aspect of language.
Grammar seven cases and uncountable exceptions
Grammar in Polish is hard but what makes it harder is similar to the above, if your grammar is less than exact you get a wall. It is less so than with pronunciation, but think about how many foreigners speak English poorly and no one bats an eye. Well in Poland you miss a case than you get a smirk. They are just not use to foreigners speaking Polish.
Again this is not a criticism of the culture at all, I love the people and country, it is just all the world does not interact like Americans do with linguistic, flexibility, extraversion and assimilation.
Lechitic languages or Western Slavic languages are universally laborious because of the grammar, but have had many friends to learned it and it is worth the effort. If you can speak on your brain is opened up to new experiences and you would be part of that inner circle, plus there are many beautiful girls in Eastern Europe to connect with, I am just being honest.