"Is he not human?"
Translation:Он не человек?
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Surprisingly enough, the rules of не/нет distinction in Russian are not that hard for the English speakers since не almost always copies not's behaviour and нет does the same with no. You can remember it as a rule of Reversed T's (yep, just made that up) since word-final т/t appears when its counterpart lacks it.
In my mind, "Не он человек" doesn't make sense, because that would translate to "not him human," and I don't know of any native English speaker who speaks like that.
The most literal translation of "человек" is "human". However this word is also very common in everyday speech in Russian, while in English "human" has more of a scientific feel to it, so it's better to use "person" to avoid sounding like an alien. Also "человек" is not gender specific, so it doesn't really mean "man", but it can be translated as "man" in certain contexts when "man" in English is used as a synonym to "person", i.e. when it doesn't focus on the gender specifically and is used as a more generic term (like in "to go where no man has gone before"). So basically you just need to use whatever is more natural to use in English.
Because a person is not an "it." A person is not a thing, so it is better to say "she is a person," or "he is a person."
I originally learned some Russian in 1963 and we had native teachers and I have never heard the word "мужчина" until this course. We were taught the words человек for man, мать for mother, девушка for girl. I don't remember all them obviously or I wouldn't be here but those I do and several others that I just wonder about - did the language change or was it something else? Не знаю.
More than half a century has passed; of course the language would change. However I don't think that is the case here. In 1963 I hadn't been born yet, so I don't know it from personal experience, but from what I know from books, movies, people who are older than me, etc. the word "мужчина" existed and was quite common, and even back then "человек" meant "human" or "person".
My guess is that your teachers were actually from Ukraine (as far as I know people in the West used to call everyone from USSR "Russian") and their Russian, even if they spoke it natively, was influenced by the Ukrainian language. In Ukrainian "чоловік" indeed means "man".
Alternatively, they were trying to align Russian with English, where "man" is sometimes used as a general term for mankind rather that specifically "male". Russian wouldn't use "мужчина" for that meaning.
Do you use Windows or Mac?
But anyway, you go to the keyboard settings and you can change your keyboard to Russian.
I did it and now I can switch between keyboards in a split of a second.
It is a good idea to keep a picture of a Russian keyboard handy, so you know which key represents which letter, but they are mostly phonetic so you can memorize them in a few hours of practice.
By the way, the same is on an iPhone