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精通双语的大脑更发达 是或不是?

A Bilingual Brain is More Developed: Oui or No?
双语大脑更发达,是或不是?
 
It has long been held that a bilingual brain is more developed. The grey matter in the brain controls sensory perception that includes language skills, memory, emotions, speech, and most imp0rtantly decision-making and self-control. These are better developed in bilingual individuals who have been exposed to a second language from early childhood.
长久以来,人们都认为精通双语的大脑更为发达。大脑中的灰色神经控制人的感官知觉,包括语言技能、记忆、情绪、言语以及最为重要的决策制定和自我控制。双语人群的这些知觉更为发达,他们从幼年起就对第二语言耳濡目染。
 
The question of bilingualism is more applicable to the United States and other western monolingual countries, where only one language is predominant.
对于双语的讨论研究更适用于一种语言占据主导地位的美国以及其他西方单语国家。
 
With burgeoning global culture and economy, and a growing multi-racial and ethnic population, the United States has to change its mono-lingual mindset and ensure that it does not miss out on the advantages of bilingualism.
随着全球文化和经济的蓬勃发展,以及日益增长的多种族人群,美国不得不改变其单语思维,确保自身不会错失双语优势。
 
Asian countries, however, are from birth multilingual cultures.
然而,亚洲国家却是多语文化的发源地。
 
(In many parts of India, children are exposed to at least three languages, mother tongue, Hindi as the national language, and English.) 
(在印度的大部分地区,孩子从小生活在至少三种语言的环境下,分别是母语、作为国家语言的印度语以及英语。
 
A human brain is bilingual even while in the mother's womb. From the sixth month the foetus can hear its mother's voice. Bilingual babies are quicker to recognise people through language.
人的大脑甚至在母亲肚子里的时候就已经是懂得双语了。从六个月大的时候起,胎儿可以听到母亲的声音。懂得双语的婴儿能更快地通过语言来识别人。
 
The linguistic part of our brain is receptive to language learning in early childhood till high school. There is no limit to the number of languages you can learn. Even as an adult, it is not too late to learn a new language.
我们大脑的掌管语言的部分从幼儿时期直至高中都善于容纳语言的学习。 我们能习得的语言数目没有上限。甚至对于一个成年人而言,学习一门新的语言也不算太晚。
 
Perhaps this explains why Asians and Hispanics find it easier to live in the United States; they are better geared mentally to assimilate the changes, absorb, and adapt to life in the United States. Of course, now most of them will be second- and third-generation Americans, but they grow up as bi- or tri-lingual children.
或许这可以解释为什么亚洲人和西班牙裔人觉得在美国生活更为容易;他们智力心理方面发展更为完备,能够接受变化并吸收,适应美国的生活。当然,如今他们大多数都会成为美国的第二代第三代人群,但是他们是在双语或者三种语言中成长起来的。
 
You do not need to write and read another language; even a second spoken language gives you the additional edge.
你不必读写另一种语言;第二口头语言甚至都会给你带来优势。
 
The advantages of bilingualism are many.
双语的优势有很多。
 
One is improved cognitive ability. A simple example is when a child hears an object described in two different languages, it reinforces his cognitive ability and he is quicker to respond even in the absence of visual stimulation when compared to a child with a mono-lingual background.
第一就是提升认知能力。举一个简单的例子,当一个小孩听到一个事物用两种不同的语言来描述时,他的认知能力便加强了,甚至在没有视觉刺激的情况下,相对于一个生活在单语氛围下的人而言,他也能更快地做出反应。
 
Second, is the improvement in concentration power. Bilinguals are more adept at filtering out the unnecessary information and concentrate only on what is required.
第二是提升专注力。双语者更善于过滤掉多余的信息,仅仅集中于需要专注的事情上。
 
Mental agility and quick thinking - A bilingual brain is used to moving from one language to the other and with better cognition, the thinking process is faster. This also covers mathematical skills.
智力灵敏度和快速思维--双语大脑习惯与从一种语言转向另一种语言,认知能力更强,思维过程更为迅速,这也包括数学技能。
 
Enhanced memory - Bilinguals process and store more information on tap. Memory and recall skills are more enhanced as compared to monolinguals.
增强记忆力--双语者随时随地处理保存信息,相对单语者而言,他们的记忆和回忆能力更强。
 
Decision Making - Bilinguals tend to compare, eva1uate, cogitate, and take a more responsible and informed decision.
决策制定--双语者会注意比较、评估、仔细考虑,做出更可靠更明智的决定。
 
A bilingual child thus develops better ability to handle problems and adjust to life around them.
因而,一个双语的小孩培养了更强的能力来处理问题,适应他周边的生活。
 
It has also been shown that in adults who are bilinguals, the onset of the dreaded Alzheimer's and other cognitive problems is significantly less. As William Reville writes in The Irish Times, "Studies of older people suffering from cognitive decline indicate that bilinguals get an extra 4.1 years of clarity before signs of dementia show up - and those who develop Alzheimer's get an extra 5.1 years."
也有迹象证明懂得双语的成年人开始出现可怕的阿兹海默症症或者其他认知类的病症的几率也明显减小。正如William Reville在爱尔兰时报中所写的那样:“对于老年人患认知减退的研究表明双语者痴呆症状的出现可以延缓4.1年,而患上阿兹海默症的时间可以延缓5.1年”
 
The grey matter of the brain, besides processing and controlling sensory abilities, is also involved with muscle control. Bi- and multi-linguals have a more developed grey matter. This helps in better control of muscles and reduced incidence of motor-neuron problems, living up to the old adage 'You are only as old as you feel.'
大脑的灰色神经除了加工并控制人的感官知觉外,还参与肌肉的控制。双语者和多语者有着更为发达的灰色神经,能帮助他们更好地控制肌肉,减少运动神经元出现问题的几率,这正应了那句谚语:“认为自己有多老,自己就有多老”。
 
There have been a lot of studies and research that prove that bilingualism is beneficial not just for your learning skills as a child but also as an adult.
已经有很多研究证实会使用双语不仅有益于少时的学习能力,也有益于成年的学习能力。
 
Another imp0rtant fact is the positive effect of bilingualism in social and cultural arenas.
另外一个重要的事实是会用两种语言对社会和文化领域有着积极的影响。
 
The social and cultural gains include the fact that a bilingual is more tolerant as they better understand the social, ethnic, and racial background of a culture other than their own. It is a small step in reducing the bigotry of monocultures.
社会文化效益包括双语者更为宽容,因为他们更理解社会的、民族的和种族的文化背景,而不是(关注)他们自身。这位减少单一文化的偏执迈出了一小步。
 
Additionally, employers welcome employees with one or more additional language skills. Why do I need another language? The answer is very simple. Life has changed and everything is global. The United States itself has moved from a mono to a now multi-racial and linguistic country.
另外,企业欢迎那些多懂一种或多种语言的员工。为什么我需要另一种语言?答案很简单,生活已经改变了,一切都向全球靠拢。美国自身也已经从一个单语国家向一个多种族多语言的国家转变了。
 
Jobs are now not just based in your own country; they are positioned all over the world. An additional language means not just better mental powers but also social and cultural affinities, skills, and understanding. An example is the number of Indians working in the IT sector in the United States.
如今工作不仅仅是寄予本土了,而是遍及世界各地。多懂一种语言不单意味着更强的心理能力,同时也意味着更多的文化亲和力、技能和理解。从事美国IT技术领域工作的印度人的数量就是一个例子。
 
Shared language creates an affinity both conscious and unconscious. Business relations and dealings are more cordial and fruitful.
共同的语言创造了有意识和无意识的文化亲和力。业务关系和往来也更为热忱而富有成效。
 
Silicon Valley is a prime example of how successful bilinguals are even in a new environment.
硅谷便是双语者在一个新的环境中有多么成功的最好例证。
 
America has woken up to the bilingual advantage and Utah has introduced in 20 percent of public schools the K-12 dual-language system with instructions half in English and half in Mandarin, French, Portuguese, or Spanish. Hopefully other states will follow suit.
美国已经意识到双语的积极作用,犹他州已经在20%的巩俐学校介绍了从幼儿到12年级的双语体系,这些说明介绍一般用的是英语,一半用汉语、法语、葡萄牙语、或者西班牙语。令人期待的是其他州也将效仿这一做法。
 
Bilingualism gives you access to a richer and more varied life as well as a healthy one. Give it a try, it is never too late.
会用双语给了你走向更富足更多变也更健康的生活的通道。不妨试一试吧,一切不算太晚。


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