Once I read in a blog the following statement: “Pick the culture, not the language”.
It stuck in my head immediately because the reason I started learning English in the first place is due to the American and British culture.
I have always been drowned in everything American related. From the music, to the movies, to the books and so on.
English has always been and will always be a huge part of my life because I love everything about English-speaking countries!
That’s why today’s question is: “Can you learn a language if you don’t like its culture?”
Think about it.
Language and culture are two sides of the same coin.
You can’t separate them.
You may be forced to learn a particular language for work duties or something, but the learning process will definitely be so much harder and longer.
To become fluent you have to be immersed in the language AND the culture: from the media to the people and their traditions.
Imagine yourself disliking the Arabic culture and yet having to spend all your time surrounded by it: watching Arabic TV shows, listening to Arabic music, reading Arabic magazines. It doesn’t sound good, right?
According to me, there should be an emotional or personal reason to take on a particular language. You can’t pick up Mandarin just because everyone is studying it and it sounds like a “cool” or “useful” language to learn.
Make sure to have a real purpose for learning the language of your choice. Ask yourself exactly why you’re doing it.
I can’t emphasize this enough. It’s extremely important.
Don’t choose poorly. If you do it, chances are that you’ll lose interest quickly and end giving up.
If your heart is screaming for German, then go for it. Otherwise, there are plenty of other languages to pick.
You have to spend hours, days, months, years practicing a particular tongue so you better have a good reason for learning it.
Don’t you agree?