Der die was?

I was given "Der, die, was?: Ein Amerikaner im Sprachlabyrinth" by David Bergmann for my birthday. Since I have a bit of trouble keeping der/die/das sorted out (I mean, come on, we only need "the" in English"), I thought this would be interesting.

And there was some occasional insight, but mostly it was a biography of David Bergmann. A pretty boring biography of a guy who learns German and moves to Germany. The chapter headings are good - they sum up the problems Americans have with German. But kept hoping the content would get better.

It didn't.


André said...

you can do it even more elegant using latin languages where you feel the sex of a word just like: luna, strada etc. looks better than "der", "die", "das" etc. those things just... are horrible like O(n) = a to the power of n!

Anonymous said...

Well, there's still the text by Mark Twain about "The Awful German Language", which makes me laugh harder every time I read it, and I'm German.
Check it out here: http://www.crossmyt.com/hc/linghebr/awfgrmlg.html and tell me if something has changed in the past 100 years.

WiseWoman said...

No, if anything, it has gotten worse with all these American words that have snuck into German and no one knows if they are der/die/das-or-was. Then they argue the merits of der Modul vs. das Modul.