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What do you think the dutch people are?

 
 
Reply Tue 5 Oct, 2004 09:44 am
In my point of view, they are just not as open as what I thought compared to americans I know. Even you name all the things which might not be allowed in other countries, soft drug..blabla...I don not need to name here. But here is the case, in our class of university, all the dutch stick together and speak dutch at the breaktime. Even in the casestudy with internatianal students who do not know dutch at all, they speak dutch and almost ignore there is someone who do not understand what the hell they are talking about. I am wondering is all the dutch university students like this or just I am not so lucky to involved in one in Amseterdam.

Plus. I am so sick of the windy climate here,like I will never get to know what next minute the weather will be. And I might be extremely lucky not caught by the rain.
 
hingehead
 
  1  
Reply Wed 6 Oct, 2004 01:49 am
Hi Amethyst - this is probably not all that relevant to you but I was actually talking to some about this the other day and the consensus was Dutch men come across as arrogant but Dutch women were lovely (mostly because they put up with Dutch men) - of course it's a crass generalisation and the 'arrogance' sensed is probably caused by some cross-cultural communication crossed wires.

As far as the speaking dutch to international students go, well... I suspect every country speaks it's own language to international students because

a) they assume learning the language is at least part of why you've chosen to study in that country, and;

b) because it's impractical to cater for all languages - apparently it's even too big a job for the recently expanded European Parliament (who are having a tough time finding Estonian to Slovenian translators)

Where's home?
amethyst
 
  1  
Reply Wed 6 Oct, 2004 08:30 am
hingehead, that is exactly what I mean here....
[quote]the consensus was Dutch men come across as arrogant [/quote], I can not agree more. For dutch women, there is only one girl in our class and she seldom show up. But, she looks cute anyway.

For the 2 reasons you come up with, hmnnn....maybe that is the case, but, as I remember right:
1) the programme is in English, anything related to study at least should be going on in english, with no exception for case study. I dont care they speak dutch for their own business.
2) How could they be so aggrogant and assume I would like to learn dutch? There are not so many people in the world speak dutch and it is derived from German somehow. However, I feel like since I have to stay here for at least one year. It seems it will make me feel better if I learn some dutch and get feet in here. :wink:
jespah
 
  1  
Reply Wed 6 Oct, 2004 03:32 pm
If you're in the Netherlands, you should be learning at least a bit of Dutch in order to communicate with people who are outside your normal range of experience. Won't you be going to a market, or a museum or a movie or a concert or a restaurant or something outside of school, some time during this year? At the very least, it would be a practical matter for you to learn certain phrases, such as "how much does this cost" and "I need to see a doctor". If you see that as arrogance on the part of the native speakers, put yourself in their shoes - wouldn't you think that Dutch folks coming to the US would have to learn at least a little English? Why, exactly, would native speakers of English cater specifically to them? Consider this an opportunity to expand your knowledge - isn't that why you're attending college? After all, if the language bothers you, why study in the Netherlands at all? Why not just study in a place where English is spoken 24/7?

The Dutch folks speak Dutch amongst themselves when not speaking English in your class - that seems pretty normal to me. I mean, don't the Czech students speak Czech? Don't the Italian students speak Italian? I'm sure not everyone is super-fluent yet, so it's understandable that they would speak to one another in their native language. Why should there be no exception for case study? Unless this is a 100% immersion class, these people are going to speak together in as comfortable a way as is possible for them.

Are you concerned that they are talking behind your back? If so, ask them - what did you just say? I want to share in your conversation, tell me, what are we talking about? It's quite possible that they're just talking about the weather or whatever, and it's just quicker than plodding along in a second language. If it's about you, someone will undoubtedly giggle or change the subject or whatever and you'll know. And then, just don't hang out with them, if they're really that rude.

My grandmother used to speak Yiddish in front of me all the time when I was a kid. I didn't understand it then and I barely understand it now. I asked my mother what Grandma was so intent on discussing that she could not share with her grandchildren, and the fact is, it was stuff like whether her tenant had paid her on time and what they were going to have for dinner. You know, mundane stuff. It was nothing important and nothing about me or being kept from me. I suspect the exact same thing is happening here.
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Tue 2 Nov, 2004 02:11 pm
Re: What do you think the dutch people are?
amethyst wrote:
In my point of view, they are just not as open as what I thought compared to americans I know. [..] But here is the case, in our class of university, all the dutch stick together and speak dutch at the breaktime. Even in the casestudy with internatianal students who do not know dutch at all, they speak dutch and almost ignore there is someone who do not understand what the hell they are talking about. I am wondering is all the dutch university students like this or just I am not so lucky to involved in one in Amseterdam.

Heh.

I see that this question is a bit old already, so I'm not sure whether this will still help you - but I had another take on it.

See, I'm Dutch, but I went to study for a while in my turn in Hungary, and I found the same thing. Over time, I got a vibrant little group of friends there - but almost all were also foreign students, Czechs, Japanese, Portuguese, Americans, other Dutch. Not many Hungarians.

And that only makes sense, too. I mean, as a student from abroad, you've just been parachuted in a country where you know noone, dont (properly) speak the language, dont know your way around, dont have any regular free-time activities, hobby, volunteer work, whatever. You're just new and looking for an entry, people to talk with, etc. Eager to get to know people, find out about things.

But the people who were already there, they already have lives! Their schedule is already pretty full with their own friends, family, leisure activities, whatever. So while all the foreign students are really eager to meet up with each other and more than willing to make a big effort, speaking in languages they dont know so well, reaching out over cultural difference, etc, the "locals" dont inherently have such a need. Doesnt mean you wont be able to find Dutch friends - I got to know a few Hungarians as well. But its just not realistic to expect them to make a big effort to accomodate and find out about you. Unless there just happens to be some personal "click", of course, but thats just like at home.

Language is really important though. In the break at school, in the shop, at a party - people like to speak their own language. Its just easier. With the Dutch its treacherous because they all seem to speak English fine - so why wont they? Well, because its still not their own language, so when they're sitting next to another Dutch person, they'll prefer to speak Dutch, of course.

That said, my then-gf moved here from America, and she had another complaint. Well, sometimes she complained like you, that people would talk Dutch amongst each other right while she was sitting there, or would insist on talking Dutch to her, deciding for her that thats what she needed to learn. But at least as often, and this I heard a lot from people who only recently came here, they would keep on talking English to her, or respond in English, even when she was trying to talk in Dutch. She's all, how can I ever learn if they keep on switching to English every time I try?

Its a bit of a mean trick, really ... first, everyone will insist, "no, I can speak English, thats OK", never letting you get round to practising your Dutch, and then after six months, its suddenly, "well why dont you speak Dutch yet? If you live here, you've got to learn some Dutch you know!"

I had to smile about the men/women thing ... its funny. My ex had the exact opposite observation. Dont start her on Dutch women ... she thinks Dutch women are bossy and bitchy. And Dutch men softies. Same like in Scandinavia, you know? And err, in a way she's right. Dutch men arent exactly proper counterparts to the Spanish machos or smooth-talking Italians or always-confident Americans ... and Dutch women are quite ... sure about what they want, heh.

But you're right - the weather sucks ;-)
0 Replies
 
J-B
 
  2  
Reply Wed 3 Nov, 2004 06:53 am
Dutchman???? You mean the people who can talk to me in all kinds of language?
0 Replies
 
Thok
 
  1  
Reply Wed 3 Nov, 2004 07:03 am
nimh

May I have two question: First, what have you studied or study still? Is your nickname related to any Dutch word?




John-Bush wrote:
Dutchman???? You mean the people who can talk to me in all kinds of language?



well, what? Dutchs are the residents of the Netherlands.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Wed 3 Nov, 2004 08:04 am
Re: What do you think the dutch people are?
nimh wrote:
Language is really important though. In the break at school, in the shop, at a party - people like to speak their own language. Its just easier. With the Dutch its treacherous because they all seem to speak English fine - so why wont they? Well, because its still not their own language, so when they're sitting next to another Dutch person, they'll prefer to speak Dutch, of course.


This reminds me, sitting in a pub in Cassel, where everyone was speaking Dutch (Flemish), when they noticed that I was a foreigner.

Got some red faces, when I (we) ordered drinks and food in (broken) Dutch.

Oh, it was Cassel, Département du Nord, France :wink:
0 Replies
 
Mr Stillwater
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Nov, 2004 04:59 am
Look, the country's called Holland, but they call it the 'Netherlands' and then they speak 'Dutch'. What is it that they're hiding? That's what I want to know....
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Nov, 2004 08:38 am
My dearest Mr. Stillwater:

a) there's no country at all, which is called "Holland", but there are two provinces:

http://www.shipmate.nl/f/p/nl/prov/noordhol.gif Noord-Holland


http://www.shipmate.nl/f/p/nl/prov/zuidholl.gif Zuid-Holland

b) the name is Koninkrijk der Nederlanden (Kingdom of the Netherlands), with the common short form Nederland (Netherlands)

c) and of course they speak Nederlands, since Duits would be my native language. (Some speak the other official language Frisian.)

http://www.4to40.com/images/earth/geography/netherlandvsholland/NETHERLAND.jpg

To add some confusion:
Amsterdam is the official capital, but the seat of government is The Hague. The official name of The Hague is 's-Gravenhage, "the count's hedge", except nobody calls the city 's-Gravenhage, preferring the colloquial Den Haag.

http://www.4to40.com/images/earth/geography/netherlandvsholland/NETHERLAND_europe_map.jpg
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Nov, 2004 10:51 am
Oy! Did you people just annex us in that last map?
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Nov, 2004 11:06 am
nimh wrote:
Oy! Did you people just annex us in that last map?


Seems more to be "EUROPE without borders" (besides, the map is from a Dutch website - so who had annexed whom? :wink: ).
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Nov, 2004 11:10 am
Wouldn't the point of studying in another country, in part, be to learn another language. Seems sort of pointless otherwise.

hmmmmmm, I've always found the Dutch to be about the most easily multilingual people I've ever met. Easy to talk to in any number of languages.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Nov, 2004 11:11 am
Very stubborn though.
0 Replies
 
Mr Stillwater
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Nov, 2004 08:04 pm
Walter, it just gets more suspicious:

Exhibit 1. When those same folk went to southern Africa, they called themselves 'Boers' and now speak 'Afrikaans'.

Exhibit 2. The Dutch East Indies!! Not the "Eastern Indian Oceanic Islands, now Commercially Run By Netherlanders From The Hague".

Exhibit 3. No place called 'Holland'! Ha! The first name for this country was 'New Holland', had to be an 'Old Holland' first, didn't there?.

Gotcha in the grip of my relentless paranoid logic!
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Nov, 2004 08:19 pm
I grew up on Holland Crescent.
Shocked

and the hamburgers emigrated to Canada on a Dutch freighter.
Shocked


Does that mean I might be Dutch?
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Nov, 2004 08:45 pm
ehBeth wrote:
Very stubborn though.

LOL!
0 Replies
 
Diego Armando Maradona
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Nov, 2004 03:32 pm
Quote:
In my point of view, they are just not as open as what I thought compared to americans I know. Even you name all the things which might not be allowed in other countries, soft drug..blabla...I don not need to name here. But here is the case, in our class of university, all the dutch stick together and speak dutch at the breaktime. Even in the casestudy with internatianal students who do not know dutch at all, they speak dutch and almost ignore there is someone who do not understand what the hell they are talking about. I am wondering is all the dutch university students like this or just I am not so lucky to involved in one in Amseterdam.


Do they speak in Dutch because:

1: They don´t want you to understand what they are saying?
2: Because they think you should learn Dutch?

I suppose it must be the first one, because in general people from the Netherlands don´t mind to speak in English.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Nov, 2004 03:38 pm
Diego Armando Maradona wrote:
I suppose it must be the first one, because in general people from the Netherlands don´t mind to speak in English.

Huh - until you're no longer an interesting expat or tourist but just an immigrant working in the warehouse ... :-)
0 Replies
 
Diego Armando Maradona
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Nov, 2004 03:41 pm
Exhibit 1. When those same folk went to southern Africa, they called themselves 'Boers' and now speak 'Afrikaans'.

Afrikaans is ancient Dutch(17th-18th century mostly). The Netherlands colonised South Africa and many Dutchmen emigrated to South Africa. In the 19th century we lost a war to GB, losing power over South Africa

Exhibit 2. The Dutch East Indies!! Not the "Eastern Indian Oceanic Islands, now Commercially Run By Netherlanders From The Hague".

Indonesia and the surrounding islands were a Dutch Colony untill 1948. Most people with Dutch ties moved back to the Netherlands after the indepence. I don´t think many people speak Dutch there now

Exhibit 3. No place called 'Holland'! Ha! The first name for this country was 'New Holland', had to be an 'Old Holland' first, didn't there?.

Old Holland is The Netherlands and Belgium


The Netherlands held Suriname as a colony until 1973
The Netherlands still hold the Dutch Antilles as a colony
The Netherlands founded New York(nieuw Amsterdam)
The Netherlands held a small part of Brazil for a couple of years
The Netherlands also held colonies in Africa and Asia
The Netherlands first set food on Australian soil

Netherlands ruled the waves from the 16th untill the 19th century
 

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