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For fans of Joseph Conrad Options
TheParser
Posted: Monday, November 13, 2017 7:47:38 AM
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I do not read fiction.

Therefore, I have never read any novels written by Joseph Conrad.

I have, however, just read something about Joseph Conrad that will interest his fans.


*****

In 1911, he wrote to a friend:

"My first English reading was the Standard newspaper ... and my first acquaintance by the ear with it was in the speech of fishermen, shipwrights and sailors of the East Coast. But in 1880 I had mastered the language sufficiently to pass the first examination for officers in the merchant marine. ... But 'mastered' is not the right word; I should have said 'acquired.' I've never opened an English grammar in my life."


Source: Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1957 print edition.
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Monday, November 13, 2017 7:56:21 AM

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We had some English grammar taught to us in school. Although most of my English skills have come by listening, reading, and using this language, not by reading grammar books. The natives just soak up all this from their birth and upbringing.

And I have read Conrad, both in Finnish and in English. You should give him a try, Parser ;-)


In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.
taurine
Posted: Monday, November 13, 2017 8:24:10 AM

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I have read some books written by Gabriel García Márquez and I didn't know about influence exerted on him by J.Conrad.
Also J. M. Coetzee...
cheekyme
Posted: Monday, November 13, 2017 4:30:09 PM
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TheParser wrote:

In 1911, he wrote to a friend:

"My first English reading was the Standard newspaper ... and my first acquaintance by the ear with it was in the speech of fishermen, shipwrights and sailors of the East Coast. But in 1880 I had mastered the language sufficiently to pass the first examination for officers in the merchant marine. ... But 'mastered' is not the right word; I should have said 'acquired.' I've never opened an English grammar in my life."


Source: Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1957 print edition.


I find it very interesting and intriguing what he wrote here. Having read some of his books, I must admit I was thinking how gifted he must had been for languages... .

It is amazing how the English language can still inspire to write in this very language (difficult language, unless one has been fortunate enough to live in the UK since their childhood) -- the Nobel Prize in Literature 2017 went to Japanese born writer! (Personally, I am thrilled with the choice.)

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” ― Benjamin Franklin
TheParser
Posted: Tuesday, November 14, 2017 5:22:25 AM
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taurine wrote:
I didn't know about influence exerted on him by J.Conrad.



How interesting!


Have a great day!
TheParser
Posted: Tuesday, November 14, 2017 5:24:48 AM
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cheekyme wrote:
I must admit I was thinking how gifted he must had been for languages.




My source says that he was fluent in Polish, French, and English.




Have a great day!

Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Tuesday, November 14, 2017 5:59:38 AM

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According to one biography I read a while ago (I think it was in The Guardian), he could understand literature in French and English as a child, though he preferred Polish. (This doesn't tie in with his first contact being The Standard, but never mind).

He read Hugo and Shakespeare before he was ten, but didn't speak English.
He read adventure books - mostly about the sea - in all three languages.

He went to a Polish school at which French was the designated conversational and teaching language for a year or more as an early teenager, then moved to France to join the navy when he was fifteen.

He continued using English (a little) - meeting British colonials and sailors around the world - then at about twenty started seriously learning English.

If he learned enough in that year to pass officer's exams - and not too long after that became a good writer, I would say he did have a gift for languages - at least English.


Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Tuesday, November 14, 2017 6:34:46 AM

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Parser,
If you don't want to read The Heart of Darkness,
read at lest Lord Jim, or Nostromo.


In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.
TheParser
Posted: Tuesday, November 14, 2017 7:20:20 AM
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Drag0nspeaker wrote:
I would say he did have a gift for languages.



I really envy people who have an ear for languages.

I certainly do not.
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Tuesday, November 14, 2017 7:26:56 AM

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Location: Helsinki, Southern Finland Province, Finland
You certainly don't have an ear for many other things. Sorry for that.


In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.
isaaac
Posted: Monday, November 20, 2017 3:04:05 PM
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Jyrkkä Jätkä wrote:
You certainly don't have an ear for many other things. Sorry for that.

Elbow ? Boo hoo! Brick wall
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