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Hi simplyblessedwithlove,

Your suggestion sounds great. However, what we have been discussing in this thread has been whether it's possible for a non-native speaker to become native proficient in a foreign language, and how native speakers can tell that someone is a non-native speaker even though they know a foreign language very well. I would therefore be anxious to submit texts written by a) a native English speaker, who is a secondary school student, b) a non-native speaker, who is a secondary school student (and very good at English), c) a non-native professor of English or someone else who seems to have an excellent grasp of English, d) a native professor of English or another highly proficient native speaker.

Let me know what you think,

Englishuser
I think it is an absolutely ridiculous idea as it is quite predictable that texts submitted would be deliberately worded to mislead the reader.

Surely if one had so much time on his hands he could find something more profitable to do with it than play cat and mouse.
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Simplyblessedwithlove
EnglishuserI agree. But it also depends a lot on how dedicated the writer is. You can surely write a page or two without sounding non-native at all, for instance, even though you are not a native speaker of a language.
I think Indians, Filipinos, Singaporeans, or people from other bilingual English-and-mother-tongue-language speaking countries can be able to do that, and there would be no way for you to tell where they are from.
Yes, that's a complication. I think of such people as "native speakers", in this kind of context.

MrP
OpenmindIf you know the author of a text as an ESL speaker, then of you've already programmed your subconscious mind to find proof for something you know is a fact.
I think it depends on your relationship with the writer also. If you know how long that person has taken his/her time to master the language, then you'd be amazed or disappointed to read their writings.
EnglishuserHi simplyblessedwithlove,

Your suggestion sounds great. However, what we have been discussing in this thread has been whether it's possible for a non-native speaker to become native proficient in a foreign language, and how native speakers can tell that someone is a non-native speaker even though they know a foreign language very well. I would therefore be anxious to submit texts written by a) a native English speaker, who is a secondary school student, b) a non-native speaker, who is a secondary school student (and very good at English), c) a non-native professor of English or someone else who seems to have an excellent grasp of English, d) a native professor of English or another highly proficient native speaker.

Let me know what you think,

Englishuser

Okay, I think MrPedantic is a native English speaker, and I like his writing style, so why don't we compare his writing to a non-native professor of English? What about you? Are you a native English speaker? I have a feeling you're not. See, I can't tell by your writing. I have to go with my feelings here. Don't mind me if I'm wrong. Emotion: embarrassed

I like the a and b comparison. Let's do it for fun! Emotion: wink
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Hi simplyblessedwithlove,

You suggested:
Okay, I think MrPedantic is a native English speaker, and I like his writing style, so why don't we compare his writing to a non-native professor of English?
I don't think that's a very good idea, to be quite honest with you. We already know (or assume we know) that MrPedantic is a native speaker of English, so if I did post a text written by a non-native professor of English, you would already know that MrPedantic is the native speaker and that the writer I'm quoting is the non-native. Besides, I don't think it's a good idea to scrutinise MrPedantic's English without his permission.

Let me know what you think,

Englishuser
Hi everyone,

Is the writer of the below paragraph a native speaker of English or not? What do you think?
The Old English Period 477 - 1066

The first Englishmen were foreigners. They came from Europe and settled in a country already inhabited by another race - the Britons. And it is to these foreigners - the Angles and the Saxons - that we owe the start of English literature. Along with their pagan religion, their families and their laws, they brought with them their poetry. Heroic warrior poems like Beowulf with their harsh, Germanic consonants were sung out in the mead halls as the listeners feasted and drank. These poems had no written form; they lived only in the memories of the singers and were handed down from one generation of bards to another. It is ironic that we owe the preservation of this war-like pagan poetry to the Christian monks who later wrote it down in the quiet of the monastery. For the reader today, however, the language is almost unrecognisable. Here are a few lines from Beowulf:

"Art thou that Beowulf, Breca's rival, who emulous swam on the open sea, when for pride the pair you proved the floods, and wantonly dared in waters deep to risk your lives? ..."

Beowulf III

This style of language was to undergo a dramatic evolution at the hands of another group of foreigners - the Normans.

Englishuser

EnglishuserHi simplyblessedwithlove,

You suggested:
Okay, I think MrPedantic is a native English speaker, and I like his writing style, so why don't we compare his writing to a non-native professor of English?
I don't think that's a very good idea, to be quite honest with you. We already know (or assume we know) that MrPedantic is a native speaker of English, so if I did post a text written by a non-native professor of English, you would already know that MrPedantic is the native speaker and that the writer I'm quoting is the non-native. Besides, I don't think it's a good idea to scrutinise MrPedantic's English without his permission.

Let me know what you think,

Englishuser

You can post either a native's or a non-native's post to compare to his. We wouldn't know if you don't tell. And assuming that text is a non-native's because his is native's is not a correct way to do it, right? We can assume here, but we might have to use the common distinguishment Mr.P said in his earlier posts to tell. Before all this, we have to ask for his permission like you said we should.

Could we please use yours, Mr. P? Emotion: wink
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EnglishuserHi everyone,

Is the writer of the below paragraph a native speaker of English or not? What do you think?
The Old English Period 477 - 1066

The first Englishmen were foreigners. They came from Europe and settled in a country already inhabited by another race - the Britons. And it is to these foreigners - the Angles and the Saxons - that we owe the start of English literature. Along with their pagan religion, their families and their laws, they brought with them their poetry. Heroic warrior poems like Beowulf with their harsh, Germanic consonants were sung out in the mead halls as the listeners feasted and drank. These poems had no written form; they lived only in the memories of the singers and were handed down from one generation of bards to another. It is ironic that we owe the preservation of this war-like pagan poetry to the Christian monks who later wrote it down in the quiet of the monastery. For the reader today, however, the language is almost unrecognisable. Here are a few lines from Beowulf:

"Art thou that Beowulf, Breca's rival, who emulous swam on the open sea, when for pride the pair you proved the floods, and wantonly dared in waters deep to risk your lives? ..."

Beowulf III

This style of language was to undergo a dramatic evolution at the hands of another group of foreigners - the Normans.

Englishuser

I would say a non-native's.

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