The Studious Life of a Polyglot

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Many of us have learned (or at least tried to learn) a foreign language. Depending on the course, we spend about five hours a week in class, and then maybe another five hours worth of assignments and studying. For polyglots, they put in that ten or more hours of work every day, depending on the person. Most of the polyglots that I was able to read about have pretty strict study routines that are based around maintaining the vocabulary, grammar, and written forms of the languages they are studying. Some of them also listen to audiobooks in foreign languages, travel to immerse themselves in the language and culture, and have conversations with native speakers that they have met in their travels, all in an effort to keep up with their language skills.

This blog is not to say that anyone who puts in ten hours of work a day into seven different languages can learn them, because that is simply not true. Some research has shown that there is a difference in the organization of the Broca's Area between polyglot men, and monolingual men. Others have compared language to music. Just like some people are incredibly gifted musically, polyglots have the unique ability to quickly pick up on all things language related, but only after they have put in the hours of studying required to keep their talent. I think once you watch the video, you will have a better understanding of just how much work these polyglots put into maintaining their language skills. It's pretty amazing.


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Holy crap, this is a DAILY routine? The sheer amount of work put into maintaining so many languages is stupifying. What makes it so hard to remember all this stuff that he can't just learn it and forget it? Usually when we learn stuff we don't need to continue to practice it till time ends. I think the problem is he's trying to be fluent in too many languages at once. I'd think it would just be easier to learn it once and forget about it till he needed it again. Like, do a quick review the week before going to a country.

That is really amazing. Just the fact that he can memorize all the verb forms is crazy, since I find that aspect of language the hardest. How is it that they can keep each language separate while learning multiple at the same time? Is their Broca's area bigger or just organized differently?

Well that was eye opening. I always just figured polyglots were simply gifted in understanding language and didn't have to work excessively hard to maintain their comprehension. My only question is how does this guy support himself when he spends 10 hours a day doing reading and writing exercises.

It is interesting to learn that not all people can become polyglots. Comparing it to music was a great way to make people understand. The fact that they spend so much time everyday makes me wonder if any of them have time for jobs or other learning besides languages.

That video was really surprising, I didn't know how much time polyglots spend reading and writing all these languages They are very dedicated to language and I'm shocked anybody would have the time and interest to do all that.

It is amazing how much time and effort polyglots put into learning new languages. Although, it would make more sense to me to learn and master one language at a time, instead of several at once, that way the polyglot wouldn't confuse the different languages.

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This page contains a single entry by past0073 published on March 4, 2012 3:58 PM.

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