TED | 為什麼要掌握第二語言?

衛報雙語閱讀2019-03-23 23:45:34


近些年,國際學校、雙語學校非常熱門勢頭之大,有些學校更是一“票”難求,家長對於雙語氛圍的追求可見一斑。大家都在掌握雙語有好處,有幫助能考更高的分數啦、能更方便的出國啦等等。



其實,最大的益處是自己本身,來看這期的TED-ED動畫教學,具體說明掌握雙語會給大腦帶來怎樣的益處。

參考文本

¿ Hablasespañol? Parlez-vousfrançais? ni hui shuo zhong wen ma? If you answered “si”,“oui” or “hui” and you are watching this in English, chances are you belong to the world bilingual and multilingual majority. And besides having an easier time traveling, or watching movies without subtitles, knowing two or more languages means that your brain may actually look and work differently than those of your monolingual friends. So what does it really mean to know a language?


你會西班牙語嗎?你會講法語嗎?你會說中文嗎?如果你能回答“si”、“oui”或者“是的”,而且看這個視頻用的是英文原聲,那麼你就可能跟世界上大多數人一樣、具備雙語能力或是多語能力。除了旅遊時比較方便、看電影不需要字幕這些好處之外,掌握兩到三種以上的語言,意味著你的大腦在結構上或運作上與你那些只會一種語言的朋友有著明顯的不同。所以“掌握一門語言”到底意味著什麼呢?


開頭以三種語言進行設問,引出本文的討論對象:學習雙語有什麼好處?此種方法新穎有趣。列舉幾點掌握雙語所擁有的優勢後,指出單、雙語者的“腦回路”不同,究竟差異幾何,請看下文。


Language ability is typically measured in two active parts, speaking andwriting, and two passive parts, listening and reading. While a balanced bilingual has near equal abilities across the board in two languages, mostbilinguals around the world know and use their languages invary proportions.And depending on their situation and how they acquired each language, they can be classified into three general types.


通常而言,衡量語言能力,主要包含兩個主動部分——說和寫,以及兩個被動部分——聽和讀。各方面能力均衡的雙語者,兩種語言的聽說讀寫水平基本差不多,但世界上大多數的雙語者通曉和使用語言各方面能力的比率不同。根據個人所處的環境以及習得語言的方法,雙語者通常可以分成三類。


每個人的語言能力各不同,根據主(學習方法)客(外部環境)觀條件的不同,雙語者分三類。


For example, let’s take Gabriella, whose family immigrates to the US from Peru when she was two-years old. As a compound bilingual, Gabriella develops two linguistic codes simultaneously, with a single set of concepts, learning both English and Spanish as she begins to process the world around her. Her teenage brother, on the other hand, might be acoordinate bilingual, working with two sets of concepts, learning English in school, while continuing to speak Spanish at home and with friends.


舉個例子來說,Gabriella在兩歲時跟著家人由祕魯移民到美國。她屬於“複合型雙語者”,Gabriella同時建立了兩套語言編碼,為同一套概念,既學英語又學西班牙語,以兩種語言同時理解周圍世界。另一方面,她的已經是青少年的哥哥則可能是“協調型雙語使用者”,他運用兩套的概念,一方面在學校用英語,另一方面用西班牙語和家人、朋友交流。


Finally, Gabriella’s parents are likely to be subordinate bilinguals who learned a secondary language by filtering it through their primary language.


最後,Gabriella的父母,則屬於“從屬型雙語者”,通過母語過濾來學習第二語言。


通過舉例,三個年齡段的人分別代表三類雙語者。1.幼時就開始接受雙語:複合型雙語者;2.青少年時期開始接觸第二語言:協調型雙語使用者;3.成年階段處於第二外語環境中:從屬型雙語者。


Because all types of bilingual people can become fully proficient in a language regardless ofaccent and pronunciation, the difference may not be apparent to be a casual observer. But recent advances in imaging technology have given neurolinguists a glimpse into how specific aspects of language learning affect the bilingual brain.


如果不考慮口音和發音問題,這三種類型的雙語者至少都算能精通一門語言。因此,一般人很難發現這三種類型的差異。然而現在,由於大腦成像技術不斷進步,神經語言學家能夠知道語言學習的不同方面是如何影響雙語者的大腦的。


如何區分三類人,神經語言學家把大腦扒開,來給你講講。


It’s well known that the brain’s left hemisphere is more do minant and analytical in logical processes, while the right hemisphere is more active in emotional and social ones, though this is a matter of degree, not an absolute split.


大家都知道,大腦的左半球是掌管分析和邏輯思維,而大腦的右半球則掌管情感與社交能力,不過這只是程度問題,不是完全的左右分割。


引出左右半球的職能區分,左邏輯右感性。


The fact that language involves both types of functions while lateralization(左右側偏性)develops gradually with age, has lead to the critical period hypothesis. According to this theory, children learn languages more easily because the plasticity of their developing brains let them use both hemispheres in language acquisition, while in most adults, language is lateralized to one hemisphere, usually the left.


語言同時包括了左腦和右腦的功能,而隨著年齡的增長,大腦的功能會逐漸側重其中的一邊,這就引出了“關鍵時期假說”。根據這個理論,兒童學習語言更容易,是因為他們的大腦仍在發展、可塑性更強,他們可以同時調用左右兩邊大腦的機能來學習語言;然而多數成年人只通過大腦的一邊(通常是左腦)學習語言。


藉由“關鍵期假說”說明兒童與成年人在學習語言時大腦的區別。兒童善於調用雙腦來學習,而成人多用左腦。

If this is true, learning a language in childhood may give you a more holistic grasp of its social and emotional contexts. Conversely, recent research showed that people who learned a second language in adult hood exhibit less emotional bias and a more rational approach when confronting problems in the second language than their native one.


如果這個假說是真的,那麼在兒童時期學習語言可以讓你更能從整體上把握語言的社會和情感背景。相應地,近期的研究表明,成年人學習外語時的情緒性偏見沒那麼多,同時相比於母語環境,他們在外語環境中遇到問題時也更為理性。


繼續就“關鍵期假說”指明二者最終習得效果的區別。

But regardless of when you acquire additional languages, being multilingual gives your brain some remarkable advantages. Some of these are even visible, such higher density of the gray matter that contains most of your brain’s neurons and synapses, and more activity in certain regions when engaging a second language. The heightened workout a bilingual brain receives throughout its life can also help delay the onset of diseases, like Alzheimers and Dementia by as much as 5 years.


但無論如何,當你學習一門新的語言時,掌握多種語言對你的大腦大有助益。有些好處甚至是可見的,比如腦灰質的密度更高,那裡包含了大多數的神經元和突觸,而且在使用第二語言時,大腦的部分區域會變得更加活躍。雙語者的大腦可以持續不斷地接收強化訓練,這能幫助延緩阿爾茨海默和老年痴呆症的發作,達五年之久。


掌握多種語言的可見好處,從大腦結構說開來,從科學角度說明雙語者可延緩得老年痴呆等疾病的時間。

The idea of major cognitive benefits to bilingualism may seem intuitive now, but it would have surprised earlier experts. Before the 1960s, bilingualism was considered a handicap that slowed the child’s development by forcing them to spend them too much energy distinguishing between languages, a view based largely on flawed studies.


雙語能力對認知能力的有所幫助在現代來看是很好理解的,但是對於早期的專家來說,卻是意料之外。在1960年之前,人們認為使用雙語對於兒童的成長來說是一種障礙,因為這需要兒童花費精力去分辨別不同語言,這種觀點的產生源自錯誤的研究分析。


話鋒一轉,雖然現在這種益處顯而易見,但早期人們對於雙語能力卻有著錯誤認知,以為雙語會阻礙兒童發展。


And while a more recent study did show that reaction times and errors increase for some bilingual students in cross-language tests, it also showed that the effort and attention needed to switch between languages triggered more activity in, and potentially strengthened, the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. This is the part of brain that plays a large role in executive function, problem solving, switching between tasks, and focusing while filtering out irrelevant information.


最新的研究的確顯示,在跨語言測驗當中,雙語者的反應時間與錯誤次數增加了;同時也表明,學生需要花費更多的努力和注意力進行語言的轉換,這也使得前額葉腦區更加活躍、進而強化其機能。這是大腦中主管執行功能的部分,解決問題、多任務轉換、集中注意力、排除無關信息的能力。


通過最新研究,指出雙語者的大腦更活躍,各項機能更完善。

So, while bilingual may not necessarily make you smarter, it does make your brain more healthy, complex and actively engaged, and even if you didn’t have the good fortune of learning a second language likea child, it’s never too late to do yourself a favor and make the linguistic leap from, ”Hello” to “Hola”, ”Bonjour” or “ninhao’s”because when it comes to our brains a little exercise can go a long way.


雖然學習雙語不一定能讓你更聰明,但是它可以讓你的大腦更加健康、複雜和活躍。即使你在年幼時沒有機會學習第二語言,但是現在學習永遠不會太晚。從現在開始學一門外語吧,把“hello”轉換成“Hola”、“Bonjour”、“你好”(本文作者母語為英語)等外語問候。對於我們的大腦來說,即使只是小小的訓練,也會有大大的助益。


學習雙語讓大腦更加健康、複雜和活躍。作者最後呼籲人人都去嘗試學習第二語言,小訓練可帶來大收穫。



https://weiwenku.net/d/110028421