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Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-01, 7:12
by Zorba
Jeg har se mange danske film. Jeg elsker dem fordi de er vigtige og morsome: jeg elsker mørk humor. Jeg taler ikke dansk, men jeg vil gerne læere. Jeg tænker at dansk er et skukt sprog :D , men jeg kunner at mange menneskere ikke elsker danske. :x

I'd like to devote a little time to Danish in 2009. I've done a little bit of reading about Danish before, but never any continuous study. I am so fascinated by how progressive the language is in terms of sound reduction, and how non-Germanic it can sound as a result. As some of you know, I've had a fascination with Scandinavia since my early childhood, not quite of Egein proportions, and I really enjoyed my visit to Denmark back in 2006.

I don't really know who the regulars are on this forum, but Hej!, and I'd warmly appreciate your corrections to my little text above. I'm sure there's LOTS of mistakes cos I've never even written a single Danish sentence before.

So I've been watching Danish films throughout the week. How familiar are people with the Danish cinema of the past twenty years, and which films have you seen / enjoyed. So far, I've seen:

Idioterne [The Idiots] - Lars von Trier - 1998.

Comment: He's certainly ambitious and I found "The Idiots" very thought-provoking, although sometimes I do feel he's simply out to shock. I have "Breaking the Waves" and I'll have to come back to it.

Pusher, 1996, Pusher II - Nicholas Winding Refn - 2004.

Comment: I wasn't going to bother with these because I don't typically enjoy gangster cinema, but they are brilliant. So low-key, refusing to romanticize violence but not condemning the criminals, so much black comedy! I don't typically like sequels either, but I thought Pusher II was as good as Pusher. Really looking forward to seeing Pusher III very soon.

Venner for Altid [Friends forever]- Stefan Henszelman - 1987.

Comment: It was okay. Normally I like slow, character-led films but this was a little too slow for me. I think the problem was that I kept comparing it to Lukas Moodysson's Show Me Love/Fucking Amal, another downbeat high-school coming-out drama that is better. I'll have to try watching this one again.

Adams æbler [Adam's Apples]- Anders Thomas Jensen - 2005.

Comment: It was fun and moving, if a little cheesy. The ending was disappointingly predictable. The tragi-comic mix worked surprisingly well.

Elsker dig for evigt [Open Hearts] - Sussane Bier - 2002

Comment: Very moving, so much so that it was difficult to watch at times.

Italiensk for begyndere [Italian for Beginners] - Lone Scherfig - 2002.

Comment: I know this is the most "popular" Danish film ever, it even made it into mainstream American cinemas, but I really liked it. It was the first Dogme-influenced film that I saw and the one that inspired me to watch all the rest. (Before I had considered Dogme a self-absorbed art-house movement, I knew very little about it).

I may have seen a couple of others as well, but these are the ones I remember best. Any comments on Danish film would be appreciated, or suggestions on what to watch text.

MANGE TAK

Zorba

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-01, 9:52
by SImon Gray
Zorba wrote:Jeg har set mange danske film. Jeg elsker dem fordi de er vigtige og morsomme: jeg elsker mørk humor. Jeg taler ikke dansk, men jeg vil gerne læere det. Jeg tænker synes at dansk er et skukt ???? sprog :D , men jeg kunner ved at mange menneskere ikke elsker kan lide danske. :x


I don't really know who the regulars are on this forum, but Hej!, and I'd warmly appreciate your corrections to my little text above. I'm sure there's LOTS of mistakes cos I've never even written a single Danish sentence before.


I don't really think this forum has any regulars. I love to help out when someone posts something, but this doesn't happen all too often. AFAIK I'm the only native speaker who actually comes here; the other fluent speakers are from the Faroes.
Idioterne [The Idiots] - Lars von Trier - 1998.


Well, that porn scene in the middle was definitely there for the shock value.

Adams æbler [Adam's Apples]- Anders Thomas Jensen - 2005.


Anders Thomas Jensen is the best script writer in Denmark. He always writes a mixture tragedy and comedy, it's his trademark. Adams Æbler is perhaps the most extreme example of this. I liked it, but I Kina Spiser De Hunde, Gamle Mænd i Nye Biler and Blinkende lygter are much better.

Italiensk for begyndere [Italian for Beginners] - Lone Scherfig - 2002.


I like this one too. Very Danish film.
I may have seen a couple of others as well, but these are the ones I remember best. Any comments on Danish film would be appreciated, or suggestions on what to watch text.


Fine list: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0421314/

I saw Sprængfarlig Bombe recently and that one was surprisingly funny.

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-01, 11:53
by Marcellus
SImon Gray wrote:I don't really think this forum has any regulars. I love to help out when someone posts something, but this doesn't happen all too often.


I peek in here on occasion (and have since long before my single post), but alas, nobody ever posts anything new, and half the existing threads are just people asking for translations. Not that I'd likely have much to contribute, anyway, still being at a fairly basic level in my studies myself...

Anders Thomas Jensen is the best script writer in Denmark. He always writes a mixture tragedy and comedy, it's his trademark. Adams Æbler is perhaps the most extreme example of this. I liked it, but I Kina Spiser De Hunde, Gamle Mænd i Nye Biler and Blinkende lygter are much better.


Ehh, I enjoy Danish films as well, but I absolutely hated this one. I like dark humor as much as this next person, but this film was just too unrelentingly vicious for my tastes. I did find the language confusion scene in the hotel lobby quite funny, though ("You want to hold meat?")

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-02, 6:14
by Zorba
Hejsa!

I dag jeg har læst to kapiteler af min dansk grammatik.

Then I looked at some reading material online. I read and translated one paragraph about Dansk historie from this site:

http://www.nyidanmark.dk/bibliotek/publ ... pter01.htm

Kapitel I: Dansk historie

1. INDLEDNING

Det danske samfund har rødder, der rækker flere tusinde år tilbage i tiden. Danmarks historie er vigtig at kende, hvis man vil forstå det danske samfund, som det ser ud i dag. Velfærdssamfundet, det politiske system, kulturen og hverdagslivet er resultater af en lang historisk udvikling.

So how's my translation?

1. Introduction

The Danish society has roots which go back (?) more than a thousand years in time. It is important to know the history of Denmark, so that you (one) can understand Danish society as it is today. The welfare state (lit. welfare society), the political system, the culture and everyday life are all results of long historical development.

What I've learnt

vigtig = important

en rod (pl rødder) = root

udvikle = to develop
udvikling

samfundet = society (use def. article in Danish)

What is "rækker"?

* * *

Then, just for fun, I listened to the recording på dansk andmade my own recording[/url] of the first paragraph! I've never done this before so it's really bad. But I've put it up here for a laugh anyway, so let me know what you think.





Mange tak!

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-02, 19:46
by SImon Gray
Hejsa!

I dag jeg har læst to kapiteler af min danske grammatik.


So how's my translation?

1. Introduction

The Danish society has roots which go [litt: stretch] (?) more several than a thousand years back in time. It is important to know the history of Denmark, so that if you (one) want to understand Danish society as it is today. The welfare state (lit. welfare society), the political system, the culture and everyday life are all results of long historical development.


Pretty good!
vigtig = important

en rod (pl rødder) = root

udvikle = to develop
udvikling = development

samfundet = society (use def. article in Danish) (yup)

What is "rækker"? (present tense of to stretch [back in time] - at række [tilbage i tiden])


Then, just for fun, I listened to the recording på dansk and made my own recording of the first paragraph! I've never done this before so it's really bad. But I've put it up here for a laugh anyway, so let me know what you think.


It's pretty bad in parts, but entirely understandable (although heavily accented) in others . The most amazing thing is that you don't sound American AT ALL (if that's what you are).

Mange tak!


Selv tak!

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-03, 9:13
by Zorba
I dag jeg var optaget, men jeg fandt tid til at lære nogle få order på dansk. Bestemt, jeg har lærte ti danske verbumer: være, få, gå, have, drikke, flyve, dø, sige, give, kende. Jeg har købte "Teach Yourself Danish" og jeg håb om det vil at ankomme i morgen. :D

It's pretty bad in parts, but entirely understandable (although heavily accented) in others.


Mange tak for listening to a begyndere murder your language. I promise I'll get better. When Teach Yourself Danish comes it will have recordings and I'll be able to listen. What would be really useful, especially for a language like Danish, would be an audio dictionary where you can hear how the word sounds. I had one for French, Spanish and Russian but I doubt something like this exists for Danish. Any ideas?

The most amazing thing is that you don't sound American AT ALL (if that's what you are).


Du har ret... Jeg er ikke amerikaner, jeg er briter (frå Nordirland). Jeg bor i Amerika men jeg ikke har amerikansk accent. :D I've heard that Danish had some influence on the Liverpool ("Scouse") dialect of English, so that's what I try to imitate when I'm speaking. That and Mads Mikkelsen. :para: Er,, I'll get better. I promise. :D

What's the difference between "kende", "kunne" and "vide"? Is "kunne" for abilities, like "know how to"? I see you corrected me. And how about "tænke" and "synes" ?

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-03, 12:56
by Marcellus
May I also propose picking up a copy of Colloquial Danish (a.k.a. the only other Danish resource readily available in the US)? Teach Yourself isn't bad, but it has some flaws, especially in its recorded material, which is especially important for Danish.

On a purely aesthetic level, the Teach Yourself seems to have chosen the most unpleasant-sounding speakers possible. I suspect they held auditions specifically to identify this trait. Even if you normally like the sound of Danish (and I do), you might have second thoughts after hearing these folks, especially in the early recordings when they comically exaggerate their soft d's as they haltingly exchange empty pleasantries in the manner of very polite robots. What's worse, their prominence seems to be assigned according to how little one would want to listen to them--the more annoying the voice, the larger the role. The "star" of the book has the weirdest of the four--he sounds as though he's been pickled, and I mean that in the most non-metaphoric way possible. He has a very sour, briny voice, and were we to discover a photo of him, I would not be very surprised were he to prove green in color, tubular, and covered in all manner of bumps. The 1st female speaker, on the other hand, has a very "pouty" voice, which gets all the worse toward the end of the book when her character become ill and she overacts the part to the extreme. The third female speaker's not as bad, though he does have a very sharp, nasally voice, and also starts slurring things up far too early on (in the second dialogue or so, I think) which can be very confusing at first. I actually sort of like the way the second male speaker sounds, though even he is not without his problems, namely a tendency to, in contrast to everyone else, pronounce the -et endings with a hard rather than soft d (I think that's the Jutland pronunciation?) which again leaves one wondering if one's actually saying anything right.

Most irritating of all is the narrator, however--her disproportionately cheerful and over-earnest tone is enough to drive anyone mad. Fortunately her parts get smaller and smaller as one progresses through the book, which one can regard as a sort of reward for one's progress.

A more serious and substantial problem, however is the amount of audio. There's a pretty decent number of recording at first, but the farther one gets into the book, the fewer and fewer dialogues are accompanied by audio. This has the effect that one may see a word, assume a pronunciation for it, and not discover until five or six chapters later that one was saying it incorrectly the whole time. I guess the logic was that one would cease to need the recorded dialogues so greatly after a certain point, but in reality they start cutting them out just as one is actually starting to make just a little sense of Danish pronunciation and could do well with some reinforcement.

Colloquial, on the othr hand, seems to have far more audio. Admittedly I've never actually heard any of it, as I got my copy from the local library, and they seem to object to carrying the audio portion of most language learning courses on general principle; however, it would seem that every single dialogue in the book is recorded, so there is no way you will not learn how to say a certain word. Secondly, the dialogues are a lot better than in Teach Yourself--they include far more new words and phrases, and they're much more entertaining, a few even being laugh-out-loud funny at points. I also sort of prefer the general chapter layout of Colloquial, which alternates between dialogues, grammar points and excercises (with the occasional reading passage thrown in), as opposed to Teach Yourself, which first throws ALL of the dialogues together, then does ALL of the grammar points, before moving on to ALL of the excercises in rapid succeesion. This gets a bit overwhelming at times.

One area where Teach Yourself has a clear advantage over Colloquial, however, is the actual quality of the excercises--Teach Yourself's are simply better and more thorough, whereas Colloquial's tend to be sparser and a little too simple. That said, I can't really see any reason not to get both courses and do them at the same time, thereby taking advantage of the strengths of each while compensatingfor their respective weaknesses.

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-03, 16:06
by Zorba
Thank you for that very detailed overview of both books. I was thinking of getting them both myself actually. If anything, I chose Teach Yourself first because I wanted a LOT of audio, and in my experiences TY books are generally better for that (!). However, both series vary vastly in quality between individual languages: both publishers seem to give the authors a lot of individual choice in how they organize their material, which gives each book a different 'feel' and of course varying levels of quality.

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-03, 18:34
by Phileas
Zorba wrote:I dag var jeg var optaget, men jeg fandt tid til at lære nogle få order på dansk. Bestemt, jeg har lærte ti danske verbumer verber: være, få, gå, have, drikke, flyve, dø, sige, give, kende. Jeg har købte "Teach Yourself Danish" og jeg håber om at det vil at ankomme i morgen. :D
Zorba wrote:Mange tak for listening to a begyndere murder your language.
Zorba wrote:Du har ret... Jeg er ikke amerikaner, jeg er briter britte (I think)

Zorba wrote:What's the difference between "kende", "kunne" and "vide"? Is "kunne" for abilities, like "know how to"? I see you corrected me. And how about "tænke" and "synes" ?

"At kende" is to know a person or thing. - "Kender du Poul?" / "Do you know Paul?"
"At kunne" is to know how to do something or being able to do something. I see you know Russian; it is equivalent to both "мочь" and "уметь."
"At vide" is to have factual knowledge of something. "Jeg ved at Napoleon døde i 1821." / "I know that Napoleon died in 1821."

"At tænke" is the actual act of thinking. "Vi må tænke hurtigt, hvis vi skal slippe ud af det her i live." / "We have to think quickly, if we are to get out of this alive."
Whereas "at synes" is to have an opinion about something, to opine. "Jeg synes at den suppe smagte dårligt." / "I think that soup tasted bad."

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-04, 4:44
by Zorba
Phileas,

mange tak for your explanations. I'm not sure I've chatted to you before on Unilang before, so let me reiterate that ɪ really appreciate your help and would be happy to help you with anything you need. Вы уже давно говорите по-русскиʔ

Teach Yourself Danish har ankommet :D. The vowels are really difficult. I am going to try to record all the dialogues myself and post them here. If you guys want to comment on particular problems with my readings, that would be great. If you don't, that's fine as well, I will keep this thread as a record of my own progress.

My grammar book tells me that final-word ˈdˈ (e.g. ˈhvadˈ, ˈmadˈ is realized as /ð/, but to me it almost sounds like a /l/ on the TY recording ("Hvad hedder din mor?"). Is this normal ?!)

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-04, 11:51
by SImon Gray
Zorba wrote:My grammar book tells me that final-word ˈdˈ (e.g. ˈhvadˈ, ˈmadˈ is realized as /ð/, but to me it almost sounds like a /l/ on the TY recording ("Hvad hedder din mor?"). Is this normal ?!)


I can't listen to your recordings at this time, but it's definitely not pronounced as an L even though a lot of foreigners seem to think so. If you pronounce it as an L it's gonna sound wrong. When you say "mad" try saying "ma-the", but don't pronounce the "the", just make sure your tongue ends up the same place as it would if you were to say "the".

Oh and BTW, hvad is commonly pronounced without the final D, just to confuse things some more :-) if you pronounce it with a D it's not wrong, though.

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-04, 15:42
by Zorba
Thanks. I wonder what's going in the mouth though that makes it sounds like a /l/? Any phoneticians?

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-04, 21:25
by Johanna
Zorba wrote:Thanks. I wonder what's going in the mouth though that makes it sounds like a /l/? Any phoneticians?

Some kind of approximant maybe?

//not a phonetician.

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-05, 4:48
by Zorba
++++++++++

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-05, 13:49
by Marcellus
It's worth noting that the Danish /ð/ isn't pronounced quite like the English version; while the English sound is produced with the tounge between both sets of teeth, and indeed exerting a bit of pressure on the upper set, when making the Danish sound the tongue should instead only touch the back of the lower teeth, and the sound is also pronounced more lightly than its English counterpart.

As to it sounding like an /l/ to on-native speakers...well, as a non-native speaker, I must say it also sort of feels vaguely like a reverse-l--that is, like an l with the tounge bent in the opposite direction. For me personally, this makes the "dl" combination (for example in "tidlig") somewhat difficult to say, requiring one to make a sort of semi-circle with the tongue which brushes across the front teeth and ends up sounding a bit jerky. But that's just me.

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-05, 16:09
by Zorba
It's worth noting that the Danish /ð/ isn't pronounced quite like the English version; while the English sound is produced with the tounge between both sets of teeth, and indeed exerting a bit of pressure on the upper set, when making the Danish sound the tongue should instead only touch the back of the lower teeth, and the sound is also pronounced more lightly than its English counterpart.


A-ha. :D Now that makes sense. Thanks for that.

Did you have a book for learning Danish phonetics, Marcellus? I'd love something with detailed explanations and IPA. I wonder if it's worth me getting Introduction to Scandinavian phonetics : Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish by Tom Lundskær-Nielsen; Michael P Barnes; Annika Lindskog out of the library here.

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-06, 8:55
by Zorba
I aftes så jeg filmen "Blinkende Lygter". :D Var jeg glad for at kan forstå lidt. Og filmen var interessante.

What is the rule for inverting subject pronoun and verb? "I aftes så jeg" vs "I aftes jeg så."

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-06, 13:34
by Marcellus
Zorba wrote:Did you have a book for learning Danish phonetics, Marcellus? I'd love something with detailed explanations and IPA. I wonder if it's worth me getting Introduction to Scandinavian phonetics : Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish by Tom Lundskær-Nielsen; Michael P Barnes; Annika Lindskog out of the library here.


Unfortunately not; I've pretty much just tried imitating whatever I hear as closely as possible (not always so easy, considering the amount of variation!), and I'm still sort of grappling with a few of the finer points, myself. Wikipedia's article on Danish Phonology does provide some half-decent explanations for the basic sounds, including an IPA transcription of a fairly lengthy Danish passage, though obviously it's nowhere approaching a comprehensive treatment of the subject.

As for getting the book from the library, why not? After all, if it turns out not to be very helpful, you can always simply return it with no harm done...

Re: Zorba -- dansk

Posted: 2009-02-07, 7:12
by Zorba
I dag er jeg meget træt. Jeg har lært ti ordene på dansk: træt; færdig; trænge til; stærk; kål; lyde; en flaske; hyggeligt; holde af.

Æ æ Å å Ø ø É é