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What is your motivation to learn Russian?

I'm just curious to know :)))

I'm learning Russian because 1) I come from Moldova and my family all speak Russian and we often watch old Soviet movies and although I understand what's going on it's quite frustrating having to pause the movie and ask what he/she just said and why everyone is laughing D:

2) The Russian language is so rich in words and phrases it fascinates me . I would like to be able to express myself through words which my family can't translate to me in English or Moldovan because there is no literal translation.

3) Russian is handy to know because if you meet anyone from Eastern Europe in a country that had been part of the Soviet Union it is likely they will know a bit of Russian so you can communicate even if you don't know their mother tongue.

4) Rich history, beautiful culture, and clever people.

I have more reasons than I realised. And this is quite long oops.

August 17, 2016



I am a language tourist - "visiting" languages by learning them and get to know how they work. Russian is exotic - a language of power, of the enemy of the west, of great poetry, of a country very huge and beautiful. It's a challenge, but I like that: the script, the grammar. I am a language tourist, so I don't need to understand it to speak it like a native - but I enjoy visiting it!


I like that- that people learn languages because they are so fascinated by the culture. I personally think it's nice.


Guys, it's really nice to read that you like to learn Russian)


Yes, we are nice. ;-)


A while back I was going through a rough patch, and needed something to distract me from a recent loss. I thought studying a language might just be intellectually rigorous enough that it would prevent me from being able to focus on the loss and give me some kind of goal to work toward, just something small and positive. I chose Russian because it was apparently difficult, I would get to learn a new alphabet, and growing up my father told me the Russians were great thinkers and authors.

It has been a very rewarding experience. I've made friends in Moscow and Rostov-on-Don that I routinely chat with (I can keep up simple conversations alright now, if they are slow) and am planning a trip in October. It's a great language and they're a great people.


I'm sorry to hear about your loss. I hope you have fun finishing the tree! Russian really is a nice language and the people are great and chatty.


Friends, if you need any help with Russian, I am here)


It's beautiful and makes me happy.

I have a penpal from Russia who is practicing English while I practice Russian.


B/c Russia is colder than Germany and, presumably, has lots of snow. For realz. I went to college in a hot place. I wanted to learn the language of a cold one. That was going on half my lifetime ago now. And I'm still at it.


That's determination if I've ever seen it. Yes, Russia has lots of snow. Don't forget that more German soldiers died from the coldness than of the actual battles in Russia. Where I live we don't get snow, just lousy rain and I would like to go to a snowy, cold country once too.


I've always wanted to learn a third language. I speak Macedonian so Russian is somewhat similar. I do it part for my career, part for the fact that I love Russian literature and part because I want to visit Russia. Ultimate dream is to go to a ballet performance in Russia.


Your ultimate dream is good )) happy learning!


Personally, I just wanted to challenge myself to learn a language that uses an alphabet other than the Latin alphabet. I also wanted to learn a language that follows a much different grammatical style than English. I went with Russian because it's so widely spoken and since I don't have too much extra free time, I didn't want to attempt a language like Arabic or Chinese, which would require significantly more time to learn.

So far, this has been a very enlightening experience. I've also come to have all that much more respect for people who migrate to the U.S. and have to learn English, especially when their native language uses a different writing system. I can only imagine learning English from their native language is no easy task.


I used to think that people who are born with Russian as their mother tongue are very lucky because they don't have to learn one of the hardest languages of Europe, but now I come to think of it, it must be very hard for them because if they want to interact with the outer world they have to learn a whole new alphabet and language.I see you're far into the tree , good luck ))


I think Russian kids learn the Latin alphabet in elementary school, and have been doing so for decades. At least, THAT is the easiest part that comes for free. If you want to find a place where the Latin alphabet is not widely known Russia is not a place to go.


"Counter-strike" anyone? ;) I want to know how my mother gets insulted everytime.


I learn Russian because I'm Russian


slightly confused ..


I definitely do agree, that lots of people don't even master their own mother tongue. In that case it is laudable of course, to work on that.


I started to learn the language on a dare, and my approach has been rather technical, since I've studied several languages over the past three years. I'm starting to enjoy the sound of the language, and the rational, practical viewpoints of the people who speak the language.


Haha you remind me of one of my friends who would do any dare ))


So I have the two important languages in WWIII ------------------------------ but really, Russia is neat


Haha but yes I agree Russia is pretty amazing in all points of view


Russian language is commonly spoken in Georgia and if you want to succeed, you need to know Russian.


Good luck learning then ))


I took it briefly in college, and years later after getting Spanish into decent shape I wanted to learn another language. Was living in Minneapolis at the time, where there's a nice Russian language school, and decided to take a class. My teacher was so much fun I stayed working on it for a year. Now I'm back on the west coast, but I've got Duolingo to keep working on it with me.

Long term I desperately want to visit St Petersburg - art, architecture, people, etc.


Good luck learning! You must have quite a head start and I slightly envy you ))


This magazine: http://kvant.mccme.ru/

For anyone having similar interests, I've found a really helpful book for the technical Russian: http://goo.gl/7pDBM6

But I still like the Duolingo version for the listening and to practice with typing.

Also, I already know English and Greek. And Russian alphabet is a pretty interesting mixture of those two alphabets. Thus it was a no-brainer for me.


Took it in college because i was interested in the culture and other languages in general. With Duolingo I am able to bring it back. The transliteration used here is different than what we used and it's much easier to go straight to the Cyrillic.


I'm surprised you used a transliteration in college at all! I think our third class meeting began with a quiz on Cyrillic and that was that. Still struggle with any transliterated version to be honest.


It was about 30+ years. Learning the sounds such as sh for ш shch for щ ts for ц, etc It was a tool and wasn't a major part of our classes and I don't remember how soon we dropped it in regular use. Been thinking about this, In the early 80's we didn't have keyboards that switched so until we got the cursive down we probably used transliteration at that point as well, It was Apple II, IBM, and Vax machines and portable typewriters (manual or electric) for students. We certainly read in Cyrillic.


I started studying Russian first time when i was 10 years old. I live in a town where there's super many Russians so if you try to get a work here and speak Russian, it's a very useful skill to have. Of course i didn't think about that though when i was in primary school, i just thought it was a cool language and might be fun to learn something new haha. But now it motivates me a bit, but it's not the main reason at all.

I continued for 6 years until i grew tired of it, kept 3 years pause (replacing it with French) so my mind was basically empty keeping so long pause lmao. I decided to start studying it again just a while ago, because i still really love how Russian sounds and in general i love the language. Having different letters makes it a bit more challenging (and i wanted to challenge myself) and i like how the spelling looks like anyway.

It's always fascinating to learn new languages of course in general and i also love their culture a lot, there's many reasons actually why i started studying it again tbh.

  • i'm writing novels (different thing if i ever manage to publish anything lol) and planning to base one of them in Russia. I'm not writing it in Russian lmao, but getting to know to their culture etc would be handy. Aaand this became too long so i'm gonna shut up omg.


You write too? I have always wanted to write a story based in Soviet Russia to illustrate the lives of the people there, but I was always worried I wouldn't do it justice.. Good luck with your learning and novel, I hope you publish it!


Yess i do, i've gone for a few different writing courses too. I thought about Soviet Union as well in some point, it would be cool, but i don't think i could write about it well enough, so i decided just to stick closer to the present. And thank you, i hope so too, but we'll see what happens haha. Good luck with your learning as well!


I don't live in Europe, but I come from a family of Russian Jews. I have extended family living in Russia (and possibly Belarus and Ukraine), and it'd be nice to communicate in their native language. :)

Plus, it would be funny to call them one day and speak entirely in Russian instead of English. Only my cousin, parents, and uncle know I'm learning Russian as of right now. Hehe. :)


Yep it would be nice to talk to someone in their native language ! Quite a shock.I can imagine my Irish friends all of a sudden talking to me in Moldovan ))


Anna Kournikova

Also, I'm a child of the 70's and 80's from the US, back then Russia was very interesting to us. It was mysterious and dangerous, it was in the news every night and there were a lot of movies and tv shows with the Soviet Union in the foreground. Moscow was a place we all wanted to visit.


That's funny! From what I know the Soviets didn't show America in good light. According to them it was a place full of terror, where people were frightened and crimes were committed regularly. If only they knew what the Americans were thinking of them..


We were taught that the Soviet government hated America and that we were in danger of being bombed out of existence at any moment. Most of the movies about Russia or the Soviet Union had that as a theme.
We were told the people were oppressed and had to wait in line for food and were lucky if they got it.

We were also lead to believe that the Russian people liked American culture and Americans though, we were told they were crazy about our jeans and music. Yakov Smirnoff showed a video of a McDonalds in Russia where the line to get in was about a mile long.

I think a lot of Americans were afraid of the whole region but we also remember stories by people who visited and said it was a wonderful place and the people were very friendly. I remember watching Samantha Smith tell her story about her letter to the USSR and her visit to Ukraine on the Tonight Show.

My friends and I always wanted to live in Moscow anyway.


It's interesting to see how these two nations have hated each other for so long, but now Trump is trying to collaborate with Putin. It's going to make me laugh ))


But Trump won't get the chance to collaborate with Putin. And Clinton simpy won't, I think. With Clinton as a president the relations between the US to Мать Россия will get worse, I think. They are already heading to a crisis anyway.


Half of my family speaks only Russian on my mom's side, but I grew up speaking only English because my parents worried that speaking two languages as a child would hinder my English development ( I guess it payed off in a way, because it turned out that I was "gifted and talented" in all my English classes lol ). I'd like to be able to actually talk to my relatives without charades.


Keep it a secret,and then shock them with your Russian!


Exactly. Especially if you can throw some slang around. That's my distant goal.


Oh, I'm definitely planning on keeping slang a secret and then surprising them, but since they already see me improving via Skype ( I know some basic phrases, but they've begun to notice that my grammar has greatly improved ), so it's too late for that.


1) I find the sound of Russian very beutiful 2) As a Pole, I find it quite easy becuse of many similar words and grammar structures 3) Knowing Russian will be an advantage for me while looking for a job 4) My father speaks quite well Russian and watches a lot of yt videos and movies in that language, so as soon as my Russian will be good enough to converse, I will have someone to practice with.


I love the sound of Russians talking too ))


I have always had a fascination with Russia and the language, but I was a little intimidated by learning to read a different alphabet. It sounds silly, but Artemis Fowl finally pushed me over the edge. :-)


The alphabet is definitely one of the parts of the language that look really difficult but aren't really. What I recommend is learning the sounds of all the letters, then practice sounding out Russian words until you don't have to "translate" each individual letter. I live in a city where there are a decent number of Russian signs in public transport, so I used to practice sounding out those until I could read Russian words just as quick as English words.


Yes,the alphabet is quite hard to learn. Lucky for me that my dad taught me it when I was still small, I can't imagine learning it all now :)


There are these really great workbooks and that is where I started, "Your First 100 Words in Russian." They are vocabulary lessons, but they are really about teaching you how to read. I have the Pashto edition, as well, and I believe they also have Arabic, Greek, Japanese, Chinese, Korean and Hebrew.


They'd be handy ..


I grew up in the 51st state of the US (Germany). So I grew up hearing how fundamentally evil the russians are. Thus to me everything russian had a forbidden attraction. Well, no. First it was only the language. The culture and all came later.

As an adult I understood, that all this is but a propaganda campaign. Since then - naturally - I want to understand, who the russian man really is.

Then, though it has been said before, I like the sound of the russian tongue.

Finally I simply do not want to loose, what I once gained. From 1995 to 1996 I had to learn russian and, being very enthusiastic and industrious of course, I archieved the level L1, almost made it to L2. Everyone, who knows the levels, understands, that this is far too good, to get lost.


I don't know the levels but good luck with your Russian :) I used to say that if you know a language a bit, then why not just master it and become fluent? So I kind of get you )


Thank you. And abuot the levels... just that you get an idea: L2 is desinged to be hard to archieve for well educated native speakers.


Wow , you must be a hardworking person :D


I like Russian music from groups like Ленинград, Ундервуд or Псой Короленко and so I want to explore Russian culture a bit more. OTOH, I was told that it's actually better if you don't fully understand Ленинград's lyrics :)

Also, it's quite interesting to see how Russian in some cases (no pun intended) works different from Germanic and Romance languages.


Good luck with your learning! You are already far ahead of me ))


Though it may come in handy if I ever go to Russia or eastern Europe, the main reason I'm learning it is simply because it's a beautiful language.

Come to think of it, German and French are the only languages I ever learned that give me a big advantage in terms of travelling and job possibilities (context: I'm Dutch and already speak English).


Russian is a beautiful language, I agree , I love the way it sounds when they talk. It sounds a bit like rich chocolate cake to me :D


I am learning because I listen to a lot of Russian Rap and want to finally understand what they are saying


Well, good luck! That is a bit like my reason to learn German, I want to be able to understand what the German footballers say in interviews . Things like these actually give you great motivation :D


It's time for me to pursue more beneficial activities rather than gaming or watching shows. Learning a new language feels to me like a better use of my time and a good mind-exercising endeavor. My wife and I chose Russian because we love the sound of the language and we've had an interest in visiting Eastern Europe and Russia. Hopefully someday.


Yes, learning a language is definitely mind-exercising )) it's meant to help you improve in school and make you clever in general :D


i am from Egypt, 3 months ago, i have applied for FIFA as a volunteer! and it's supposed to be established on Russia, i have to pass through many tests to travel there, but i decided to learn Russian, to be able to communicate there.


Are you going to be working during the World Cup?!! that is so exciting!!! Good luck with your Russian ))


Thanks, i applied as a volunteer during the World Cup 2018, but i don't know what the tasks i will do, since i don't accepted yet :), so i am working hard on my Russian, so i can take likes from the stuff


I'm a cellist and my teacher was from Bulgaria (a former soviet country) so I learned cello with the russian method, or at least, something very close to it. There are different methods of playing cello: the French, the German and the Russian methods are the most distinct ones, you can recognize them just by watching someone play. This made me have an interest for the Russian and Soviet culture, even though there was heavy propaganda against it in the television. Also in my teens I read several books written by russians, mostly Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky. It created in me a desire to read them in their original language. Now I'm interested in everything soviet. I watch Mosfilm on Youtube and have a Tumblr about soviet stuff (vsyavlastsovyetam)I would love to live in Russia for a while to experience the hard weather! I love cold winter and snow. I'm brazilian, so that is quite unusual. When I tell people I'm learning Russian they think I'm crazy! :)


1) Beautiful language. All slavic languages are charming but the East slavic ones are just brutal. They're the German on the Balto-slavic branch.

2) I have become quite enamoured with Russian culture and Russianness generally. I became a bit sick of the ostentatious Japanophilia around and Russia was a great antidote to that.

3) Arkona and the many other Pagan metal groups helped inspire me. So did Masha and the Bear to be fair. It's weird to see cute voices speak Russian, I love it.

4) It's a major language and I want to have a basic in all those. Focusing on French or German is swell when you only go to places that speak that. But a LOT of people speak Russian.

5) A part of it is contrarianism. People pretend Russian isn't one of the most beautiful languages ever and are a bit dismissive about the Russian national character so I am flying its flag. People fawn over Scandinavia or the Netherlands and I'm like "big deal"; I would never vote for party like United Russia but Russian people and culture are still awesome.


The Russian culture, mostly by music. The Alexandrov Ensemble (Red Army Choir) is my gateway to the Russian language. Then comes Muslim Magomayev, VIA Samotsvety and Plamya, KINO, Oleg Gazmanov, and of course, hardbass music.

And of course it's one of the international languages. With mastering Russian you could go to ex-USSR countries with ease.


Honestly... so I could understand sports interviews and my favourite athlete better. Plus, I've always been so intimidated by the Cyrillic alphabet I just wanted to understand it. I have become very interested about the culture through learning the language. Would love to visit Russia someday!


I hope you found the Cyrillic alphabet surprisingly unchallenging!



I used to know more Russian, but it has been years, so I decided to learn from scratch in the background when I have done enough Portuguese on a given day. (I try to get through 7 lessons a day total, across all languages.)

Russian is a beautiful language, and my dear friend has been involved with someone from Bulgaria for years. I think that once I get through Russian here, I'll then do the Bulgarian course. It will be nice to be able to surprise their family by joining in conversations even at a basic level.

I also want to learn Suomi/Finnish, but since there's currently no duolingo course, I think Hungarian will get me at least closer to thinking with similar structures.


It's nice to know a lot of languages , good luck with your learning :))


I first started Russian as a challenge to myself on a youtube channel I used to run. I spent about three months learning it, and was very proud of myself. After that, I moved on through other languages to see how much I could learn in a short period of time, which was my channel's "gimmick", and I never really kept up with Russian.

Then, two days ago, I set my ipod on shuffle and a random ленинград song popped up, and I remembered how much I enjoyed Russian. Now I'm on the path to recover everything I've forgotten, and maybe get to a functional level in the language.


Yes, even though Russian is very challenging it is very enjoyable too, and makes you all the more proud when you finally master it . I wish you good luck ))


I just understand Russian quite well, because I speak Polish and Belarusian and there are a few similarities, so I decided to improve my understanding of Russian and maybe start having conversations in it.


Why know a language partly when you can know it fully? Good luck ))


Exactly :-) Thanks!


I want to learn it simply because I love languages.

Plus, I know someone who speaks it so it will be easier for me to practice than, say, Guarani.


Good luck learning!


Because i will marry a russian girl. Greetings from Mexico!


I have some russian friends

[deactivated user]

    I am learning Russian because I want to be an analyst for the FBI. I think that knowing this language will help me (when the time comes) deal with international missions.—I’m also learning German, and Chinese is on my list :)


    Nice thread idea! I have a few different reasons. 1) I work in a very busy computer repair shop near Manhattan. Nearly all of my coworkers are bilingual in English and Spanish. I don't know Spanish that well, but I can figure it out slowly just from years of exposure. The 2nd most common foreign language I encounter here is Chinese, but I don't know ANY Chinese, and I already know some Cyrillic from many years ago. We also have Russian customers sometimes, so it just seems like a logical conclusion to learn Russian. I learned the alphabet back in high school. 2) As a child, I was really influenced by Billy Joel's Концерт album, even though I didn't know any Russian at that time. It's just always been in the background. 3) Part of my background is Russian (and a few other eastern European areas) 4) I went to school for music and discovered that I enjoy a lot of the 20th century Russian composers, Alexander Scriabin in particular. The music history is very interesting.


    I needed something to do during quarantine, and I already had a preexisting interest in wanting to learn Russian. :)


    I wanted to go to Russia back when it was still the Soviet Union. It was the first foreign country I ever wanted to visit. Still haven't done it. I've lived in Japan, China, Korea, briefly in Mexico, but not Russia yet. I knew it was notoriously difficult (in a way that Japanese wasn't, actually) and it scared me. Now that I plan on going there seriously again, I decided to try to get serious about studying it.


    Im from Philippines. I have no knowledge about russia. When i was a kid i thought that the st basils cathedral was disney land because of those spiky architectures really lovely to my kiddie eye. When i grew up i thought russia was full of mobsters and a bad country who likes to invade other countries who have nuclear bombs kill people no freedom for religion like everybad characteristic of a country and citizens they have vampires they are terrorists villains thats what i heard when i was growing up . One day i was exposed to Real Time Strategy Game and i was exposed to communism facism blah blah all that stuff and i kinda like it. Then i heard about the Soviet Union long story short i studied history a lot especially russian history i was so facisnated by the USSR i thought communism is about atheism and killing people n stuff but it isnt russian history and culture is just so great! I developed my love from Russia via studying history and i finally knew that st basils cathedral wasnt disney land what a bummer and they have snow i never seen snow all my life! maybe some day i can work and settle there permanently that keeps my life from going on im currently 15 Years old and i would really like to grow in Russia just like russians but sadly i cant :( and i wont i guess

    Learn Russian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.