Philologists appreciated Matvienko’s call to replace the words “workshop” and “baby sitter”
Posted On June 24, 2022
The fight against foreign words is useless, their appearance is an inevitable process, philologists interviewed by RBC said. The day before, the speaker of the Federation Council, Valentina Matvienko, called for resolving the issue of replacing foreign words in Russian
The proposal of the Chairman of the Federation Council Valentina Matvienko to legally regulate the use of foreign words in the Russian language is of no practical use, Doctor of Philology, Professor, Head of Department at the Institute of the Russian Language of the Russian Academy of Sciences Anatoly Baranov told RBC.
“This topic comes up all the time. I remember, when I was still a student, we were shown a note by V. I. Lenin, stating that we should pay attention to the fact that we use the Russian language poorly, [we use] foreign words. Even earlier, there were Slavophiles who proposed instead of the word “galoshes” say “wet shoes”. This is an absolutely pointless undertaking that will not give anything, — he said.
According to him, foreign influence on the language always happens. “There is a practical life. There was Greek influence, German and French. Now English. This is an inevitable process. The language itself will select what is needed,»,— he clarified.
Baranov emphasized that in the Russian language there were a huge number of borrowings before. “Words that seem to us like from a common Slavic fund turn out to be from Greek. For example, the word «terem»— Greek. Although it is perceived by native speakers as truly Russian, — he said.
The idea of protecting the language from unnecessary foreign words has the right to life, but it is very difficult to implement, Vladimir Slavkin, associate professor of the Russian language stylistics department at the Faculty of Journalism of Moscow State University, told RBC. “On the whole, the idea of protecting the Russian language from unnecessary borrowings is sound. Another thing— how to determine how necessary a particular word is. For example, in the quote by V. Matvienko there are two borrowings & mdash; “analogue” and “unique”. These and many other words that came from different languages have long been recorded in dictionaries and have become common. And “hype”, “bow”, “wow!” can be considered just buzzwords. But what about the latest borrowings like “hashtag”, “content”? They have already become terms, and are widely used. Therefore, it is difficult for me to imagine a law restricting the use of borrowings, if only because the text of the law must indicate all the words to be banned, — he concluded.
On June 22, Valentina Matvienko instructed the Committee on Science, Education and Culture to study the situation with the unreasonable use of foreign words in Russian and find ways to legally resolve this issue. “There are analogues in the Russian language. Why do we pollute our beautiful, wonderful, unique language with such different words? This should also be looked at at the legislative level,»,— she said. As an example, she read a poem where borrowed words were used: “And today we have a workshop (training session.— RBC), and you? And here we have a babysitter hypanula (the nanny made a noise around herself.— RBC), not the right word».
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Earlier, the head of the Crimea, Sergey Aksenov, announced the need to rid the Russian language of English borrowings. “Inside the country, we need a complete cleansing of other people's meanings. We should begin with the purification of our language, speech and educational process from Anglicisms, — he said. Subsequently, a similar proposal was made by Vice-Speaker of the State Duma Pyotr Tolstoy. According to him, Russia needs to create a single language space, for which it is necessary to abandon “stupid borrowings and anglicisms.”
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