"Possiamo giocare con il linguaggio."

Translation:We can play with the language.

May 12, 2013

This discussion is locked.

  1. is there any specific reason why it isn't col linguaggio ?

  2. qual'è la differenza tra le parole il linguaggio e la lingua ?


Nice question. Reading up on it, "linguaggio" seems to refer to the whole system of human communications, or rather the system of shared conventions permitting humans to communicate: thus it extends beyond the concept of "lingua", which is the subset related to speech and writing, to include gestures, expressions, glances, and so on. Thinking about the internet, emoticons are what brought written communications to the level of "linguaggio". Interestingly to explain all that the Crusca website quotes a Francophone Swiss linguist, Ferdinand de Saussure.

As for the first point, you could use "col" too as far as I know, it's just rarer to join con with the article compared to other prepositions for some reason.


Thanks for the explanation, I had the same question about the difference between la lingua e il linguaggio.


f.formica: great explanation! have a lingot.


I'd also say lingua is used when referring to a specific language, whereas linguaggio means language as a general concept. (Correct me if I'm wrong.)


I was aware of the difference between lingua and linguaggio, so I really wonder why 'we can play with speech' was marked wrong. Do you know why?


Col is used rarely in spoken Italian and is mainly literary. Only in the South will people use it in speak along with contractions of per and the articles.


Here is a forum discussion on the difference between lingua and linguaggio which might help.



how do you emphasize the words?


we are able to Rejected . So this does not mean we can ???? Bull


Report it. But it's clunky English.


No it's not. It is perfectly common English!


It may be common, but the words are different, so different words are likely used in Italian, too. I don't know why some people have a problem with translating clear sentences the way they're written, instead of insisting that it CAN be something different. Some Australian wanted their evening "tea" to be accepted as "dinner." Well, we're having "brunch" here, let's say, but we don't expect it to be accepted as either "breakfast" or "lunch" on a site catering to people from various countries. Duo barely manages standard English.


"We are able to play with the language," sounds a lot clunkier to me than "We can play with the language." In general, I would say that native English speakers are less likely to use "able to" unless they are very deliberately talking about physical capabilities.


nerevarine: Just physical cababilities? How about ... well...language? "We're able to speak Italian." Especially in it's opposite: "We're unable to speak Italian". How about situations involving permission? "Are we able to speak Italian in our classroom?" Ok, Can and Able aside (well we know how THAT ended don't we!), I think removing 'the' from the sentence is more in keeping with the meaning of 'linguaggio' since my understanding of it vs. 'lingua' is that it refers to a specific jargon or language of the street, everyday language. So there's the Italian language -lingua- and there's say the language of Calabria, Sicily, Naples, etc. -linguaggio. The complete phrase used is: "nel linguaggio quotidiano". At least that's how it was explained to me by a native.


I agree that removing or adding the article before "language' changes the sentence. Without an article, it is simply referring to language in general.

This may be entirely subjective, but "We are able to," in this sense, just hits the ear wrong. It sounds like someone who learned English from a book. For example, "We're unable to speak Italian," is technically correct, but it would much more commonly be rendered as, "We cannot speak Italian.'


nerevarine: Good point below. In thinking about it, another point comes to mind, and that is that able/unable strikes me as more emphatic than 'can/cannot'. "We can't go to Italian today" sounds like just a general statement vs. "We're unable to go to Italian today" which to my ear at least sounds more emphatic, implying a more serious situation.


Yes, that would be a good example of how it changes the tone of the sentence.


When I hear "clunky," I think of a phrase that is grammatically correct but which nobody says, pretty much ever. I would say "cannot" is far clunkier than "able to," and there's no question which one is more common.


Really? You never hear anyone use the words "can" or "cannot," but you always hear them saying "I am able to?"


I didn't say anything about "can."


But the sentence only uses "can"...


Are we talking about puns?


A pun is "un gioco di parole". Is Italian a good language for puns?


that is Duo's motto.


Would the translation: "Can we play with the language?" be also acceptable?


No, but only because it's not a question.


È per questo perché voglio imparare l'italiano: per poter giocare con il linguaggio in italiano. :)


Please do not put wrong words as the first choice. I put " We can play with the language" as my first choice and then changed it after looking at the hover. Learning a language is hard enough without being mislead while learning it.


The hover hints are only meant to be general guides if you get stuck. If you know what a word means right away, there's generally no need to use those, especially because a lot of them become inaccurate in different contexts.

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