Russia is the most-spoken Slavic language in the World. It has approximately 160 million native speakers and is an official language in Russian Federation, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan. So, what are the features of this language, and why do so many people choose to learn it? Without further ado, let’s find out!
From the linguistic viewpoint, Russian is considered one of the hardest languages to learn. And there are several things to highlight. Firstly, it has flexible word order. It can be straight when a subject is followed by a verb and object. However, the opposite word position is possible without any change in the meaning. Due to this, non-native speakers often struggle with translating and comprehending Russian speech, especially when most languages have strict word order.
Secondly, Russian grammar has cases, meaning that nouns and adjectives have six modifications depending on the context. It prolongs the period of acquiring fluency. Before one speaks, the person must think about how to change several words in a sentence. That requires a lot of practice and, therefore, time.
Last but not least, the Russian language is an old one. It went through revolutionary changes throughout its history. Nevertheless, we still notice some ancient features in contemporary speech. These elements appear as idioms and fixed word combinations. It seems like Russian beats all records by the number of unusual collocations. Unluckily, foreigners have a hard time understanding them. Moreover, even natives cannot explain why some phrases exist.
Now, let’s talk about the reasons to learn Russian. Russian-speaking countries are tightly integrated into the global trade chain. Even though Russian is usually associated with fuel exports, it accounts for around 13-20% of the world agriculture market. Russia opens top ten of the leading wheat, sugar beet, and potato producers, making it a significant part of the worldwide economy.
Consequently, the role of the Russian language remains high for business and political affairs. Some language learners choose Russian merely to dive deeper into the phenomenon of Russian culture. Russian language is idiomatic and has hundreds of unusual word expressions. No surprise, Russian classical poetry has achieved international recognition.
In conclusion, the Russian language is a difficult subject to master. The language structure, writing system, and, of course, the cultural imprint can prevent you from taking it up as a foreign tongue. However, when you open your heart to it, the language gives back. Grab onto any opportunity to acquire fluency in Russian, and your perception of the world will never be the same.