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"Он нормальный человек, и это хорошо."

Translation:He is a normal person, and that is good.

December 15, 2015

43 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MrDinkleberg

Pfff, that's really subjective.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alexroseajr

It is very much in line with russian culture and principles though.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DaudSangar

"he is a normal guy and that is good" should be acceptable here


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Neon_Iceberg

"Guy" means "парень" in Russian, it is masculine. "Person" - "человек", "личность" - uses for both genders.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DaudSangar

Thanks for clarification.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gustav_Lundin

Are they not interchangable? Specially when the pronome is Он?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Neon_Iceberg

Yes, but every word (guy, person, etc.) has its own translation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/oulenz

That's not how translation works.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/oulenz

I mean that words don't correspond one-to-one. My impression is that человек is used much more widely in Russian than person in English. Therefore, it may be appropriate to choose a different word here, like guy.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Neon_Iceberg

Do you mean that the word "person" can be translated in Russian as a "guy"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndrBallon

So Личность is person Quite interesting ! Народ is people like люд. Can I swap them ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Loulou6688

Why is it good that he's normal? Maybe it would be better of he was weird.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/baphomettitties

Sorry can't relate


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/R4D1U5

Username checks out


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/matej958336

"Ordinary person"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phil_Stracchino

I just tried that myself and it was marked wrong, but it seems a perfectly valid translation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PachaTchernof

IMO, it shouldn’t be accepted, because:

Ordinary — обычный, обыкновенный, простой
Нормальный — normal


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phil_Stracchino

OK. In English, they are in this context fundamentally synonyms.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PachaTchernof

I just checked both words in Vocabulary.com and no one of them is synonym for other :-)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phil_Stracchino

Pacha, freedictionary.com just happened to be the first thesaurus that I checked. I just looked at vocabulary.com, and honestly I would not rely on it as an authoritative scholarly reference to the English language. It's just as much if not more a commercial product than freedictionary is.

I just cross-checked Oxford, Cambridge, Macmillan, and Merriam-Webster, probably the four most respected dictionaries of the English language in the world. All four group 'ordinary', 'usual' and 'normal' together as synonyms. (Along with 'customary', in fact, but one would never say 'a customary person'. One might, however, have cause to say 'THE customary person.' But that would be a different context.)

I'm not trying to argue that the two words are synonymous in Russian. And they do have other contexts in which they are not synonyms in English either. (For instance, 'normal' in a mathematics context can mean 'perpendicular'.) But they are, in this usage, synonymous in English.

I get the impression from other comments on this question that the word Нормальный carries special contexts of 'respectable, not a deviant' in Russian that 'normal' does not convey in English. I get that. I just don't see why 'ordinary person' is not as valid a translation in English as 'normal person', especially given Duolingo's frequent predilection for 'common usages' over what seem to be more exact translations that simply aren't things one would usually say in English. Neither word in English carries the 'not a deviant' connotation anyway, so it's not there for a synonym to lose.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phil_Stracchino

freedictionary.com:

or•di•nar•y (ˈɔr dnˌɛr i)

adj., n., pl. -nar•ies. adj. 1. of no special quality or interest; commonplace; unexceptional. 2. plain or undistinguished. 3. somewhat inferior or below average; mediocre. 4. customary; usual; normal. ...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PachaTchernof

Phil, just compare who make freedictionary.comhttp://www.freedictionary.com/resources/contact-us

and who make Vocabulary.comhttps://www.vocabulary.com/about

I suppose FD is made just for getting something from advertising, Vocabulary.com is made for exceptional educational and other purposes.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/R_Andersson

человек – чело|век

Is человек a compound word consisting of чело, an archaic word for лоб (forehead), and век, meaning ‘century’? This is strange...why would ‘human’ or ‘person’ be ‘forehead century’ in Russian?


[deactivated user]

    Человек is not a divisible word in modern Russian. It has existed for long time, underwent various sound changes, and now we can't say what is its etymology for sure.

    The Max Vasmer's etymological dictionary lists two main hypotheses:

    • Человек might have originally meant 'a child of a family', and later came to mean any child, and then any human being. Чело- is related to челядь 'servants' (originally, 'family'; the original meaning was lost in Russian, but kept in some other Slavic languages, such as Bulgarian and Czech). And век is related to Lithunian vaĩkas 'boy, child' and Latvian vaiks 'boy, child'. Lithuanian and Latvian are distant relatives of Russian, so if they have this word, it's possible that Russian had it too, in the past.
    • Человек migth have originall meant ''full of strength, full of age", and originally refert to adults, but then came to mean any human being. Then, чело- is related to целый, and век is indeed related to 'age' (this word underwent a big change of meaning: originally it meant 'strength', but then it came to mean 'life' and 'age of a person'; and then 'century', because people live roughly a century — ideally, at least; the original meaning 'strength' is retained in Lithuanian, which is a distant relative of Russian. The meaning 'life' is retained in some compounds, like «на своём веку́» 'in one's lifetime'.).

    [N.B. I don't actually know all those languages mentioned, I'm just retelling the dictionary. For all doubts, refer to it. To see this dictionary, go to http://starling.rinet.ru/cgi-bin/main.cgi?flags=eygtmnl , click on 'search' near Vasmer's Etymological Dictionary, and then enter the word inside the 'WORD' field.]

    Anyway, the word человек was created very long ago, so we can't be sure what it meant originally. We can only make hypotheses.

    However, most likely it wasn't formed from чело meaning 'forehead', because back in that time when the word человек appeared, the word for 'forehead' looked differently: it is believed to have had -ес- that later disappeared. So, if the «человек» would have been formed from this word, we'd expect it to be **челесовек, not человек.

    The explanation «человек = чело + век» is not a scholarly explanation, it was created by ordinary people trying to understand their language. As such, it's an interesting observation. It helps to see how ordinary people understand this word. So, we can conclude that people associate humans with:

    • intelligence, because чело 'forehead' is a reference to head, a place of brains, and
    • being mortal, i.e. living only until some age.

    But this is just how people without linguistic knowledge can explain this word. So, it's not about how it was originally created. It's about how we understand 'being human' now.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/R_Andersson

    О, теперь я понимаю. Thank you for explaining! Спасибо большое за объяснение, Серая Жаба!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phil_Stracchino

    Trying to determine the etymology or meaning of words by breaking them into what look like their parts without knowing where the word came from often yields really bizarre results in English. For instance, 'sandwich' has nothing whatsoever to do with sand, and turbotax is accounting software, not a long-handled tool for chopping down flatfish.

    I see no reason why it should be any different in Russian. :)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kdammers

    Here in Kazakhstan, it seems to me that people use normaln- to mean corrrect/OK/acceptable rather than normal.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/j3si3j.77im

    Он спит всю ночь и работает весь день?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/yashamax

    Why not 'fine' person?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/victor.mor18

    Why not "He is a common man"?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Neon_Iceberg

    That would be "он обычный человек", the difference between these sentences are:

    "Он нормальный человек" - he doesn't have any deviations

    "Он обычный человек" - he's not a governor, not a judge, not a powerful man, he is a simple person.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/bleedingorange

    Out of curiosity, I searched "обычные люди" as in the Pulp song "Common People", and found that the song was translated as "Простые люди". What's the difference between обычный and простой?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Roselet

    Обычный человек: An ordinary person is a person with standard thinking. He lives and does everything just like everyone else. Простой человек: A simple person is honest, reliable, sincere, and therefore understandable. In addition, a simple person is friendly to all people !The negative meaning of simplicity is naivety, turning into stupidity, a limited mind, as in the proverb "simplicity is worse than theft". (простота хуже воровства)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/bleedingorange

    Thanks for the reply! In that case, I personally think обычные люди would be a better translation XD


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/victor.mor18

    Oh, I see. Thanks for clarifying


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PolyGoat8

    the same meaning as "commoner" (someone with little power, not a king) VS a normal man (someone not different from others)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ULRICHSCHL4

    "Он нормапьный человек и это хорошо" Where is the typo?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

    Нормапный, should be л


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ULRICHSCHL4

    Yes - found it after having posted. Always happens. Thanks and sorry.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/traindrivermark

    Нормальные is used a lot in spoken russian, for something like ok, average, ordinary


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/holderwd93

    Sounds like something an alien would say to me, Im not falling for it


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/traindrivermark

    My ex (native Russian) says нормалн here means not crazy


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gaydolokhov

    me trying to force myself to like men to convince myself that i wasn't a lesbian in 7th grade

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