«Рабочий» in the USSR sense didn't include farm-workers, so common USSR phrases usually referenced «рабо́чие и крестья́не» 'workers and peasants'. In fact, the hammer and sickle symbolised the union of industrial and agricultural workers.
Because that is the correct translation.
"а" means "and", while "but" would be "но"
I would use «рабо́чий» to describe blue-collar workers.
Something that there is now a lot less of in Russia since the Iron Curtain came down
So...what's the difference between рабочий and работник? Just a nuance, or different type of work (one being more physical labour or similar)? Thanks!
Russian has a number of nouns derived from adjectives, and they are still declined as adjectives. Most commonly, those nouns describe:
- people: рабо́чий 'worker' (literally 'working'), больно́й 'patient' (literally 'ill'), родны́е и бли́зкие 'nearest and dearest',
- food and drinks: моро́женое 'ice cream' (literally 'freezed'), сла́дкое 'dessert' (literally 'sweet'),
- places: столо́вая 'canteen' (literally 'related to tables'), парикма́херская 'hairdresser's / barber's' (literally 'belonging to a hairdresser/barber').
‘My friend is a worker, but not I’ - I don’t know, is there any grammatical error in my answer or am I missing something?
I think that is technically not correct English grammar because of parallel structure. You are saying something like, "My friend is a worker, but he is not I (me). You need to include the verb.
Ok, but say that we were to reverse the case, changing the second statement to true. ‘My friend is a worker, and I too’ – would that make sense or do you really have to include the verb to be?
You still need it. The way parallel phrases work when using "and", "but" etc. is that you need to repeat the same grammatical construction in the things that are compared. Such phrases refer back to the nearest construction that matches, so if it doesn't match, it might not be clear what you are comparing. In common speech people often do leave things out, but this example probably wouldn't sound natural.
Just a note of Russian Spelling Rules and AdjectiveNouns like рабочий: The masculine singular adjective ending is -ый, but because the end of the stem рабоч is ч, the spelling rules* require -ый to be change to -ий.
*Ы -> И after Г, К, Х ,Ш, Ж, Щ, or Ч