But what does "si" do here? the hint said it means "oneself".i didn't quite get it......
si can be used for reflexive (I wash myself), passive voice (si passivante - eg, "si vende la casa"; literally "the house sells itself", better translated in English in the passive voice as "the house is being sold") or for impersonal constructions (si impersonale - where the subject is indefinite or unspecified; eg, in English, we might say "in Hawaii, people go to the beach", but in Italian one would tend to say "alle Hawaii, si va alla spiaggia"; ie, 'si' has the connotation 'one': "one goes to the beach" - ie, it's the thing to do, but there's no identifiable individual doing it). We could therefore translate "come si cucina il maiale" either as "how does one cook pork" (si impersonale) or, almost equivalently, "how is pork cooked" (si passivante). Without the 'si', "come cucina" would mean "how does s/he cook" - ie, we'd be referring to a specific and identifiable person. See http://www.italian-online.de/grammar/chapter7/7_5_il_si_passivante.htm for a more complete explanation.
Can you say, "How do you cook pork"? I know that's not a direct translation but it's a lot closer to how a native English speaker would express this.
when listening to the audio, I am confused as to when to use "ci" versus "si"
Could "How is the pig cooked?" be accepted? Someone could be asking how to cook the pig.
No, it couldn't. Your sentence would be: "Come si cucina il suino?"
- il maiale = pork
- il suino = pig
- un porco/a = a sleazy, filthy man/woman
also check this http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=362845 (post #2)
I'm not clear on when one uses 'il' - why is this not simply maiale, rather than 'il maiale'?
However, it was marked as wrong in this same section when I translated 'se mangio IL formaggio, non mangio LA zuppa'... Ideas anyone please?
Thank you. [Banging head against keyboard, re-upping for more drill in clitics.]
Sorry basic question, but why can't you say "Come fai cucina il maiale?" I thought 'fai' could be both you do and do you depending on context, like sei in 'sei solo' (are you alone?), where sei mean 'are you', and 'you are'.