Most Russians Care About Preservation of Russian Language Uniqueness

Specialists from the All-Russian Public Opinion Research Centre (VTsIOM) present survey data on Russians’ attitude towards foreign words in Russian speech. According to the survey results, 67 per cent of Russians believe it is necessary to use Russian words and introduce their own terms. In turn, 23 per cent of respondents believe that it is necessary to borrow foreign words that are used as international ones.  

Men (27 per cent) and young people of 18-24 years old (41 per cent) were more often favouring international words. Experts noted that with an increase in the age of respondents, the share of those who support the uniqueness of their native language also increases (64 per cent among 25-44-year-olds, 69 per cent among 45-59 years olds, and 74 per cent among those over 60 years old). In Moscow and St. Petersburg, opinions on native and foreign words were divided (43 per cent each).

The use of foreign words in business communication is more likely to pose a threat to the development and preservation of the Russian language, according to 54 per cent of Russians. This position is more often held by people who live in villages (61 per cent). Another 30 per cent of Russians, mainly living in Moscow and St. Petersburg (47 per cent), as well as cities with a population of over one million and 500-950 thousand inhabitants (36-35 per cent), see the possibility of enriching speech in this.

Despite the possible threat to the Russian language’s purity, more than half of Russians’ reaction to the abuse of foreign terms in speech is calm (54 per cent). More often, this applies to women (56 per cent), as well as young Russians of 18-24 years old (72 per cent) and 25-34 years old (65 per cent). Moreover, 18 per cent of respondents do not even notice foreign words in their speech. However, 27 per cent of the country’s residents are annoyed when they hear words from other languages in their native speech, of which 17 per cent hide their reaction from others. Most often, these are respondents aged 45 and older.

It is specified that half of Russians (50 per cent) do not use foreign words at all in their speech. Although 67 per cent support their native language, 45 per cent say borrowed words from time to time, 21 per cent of Russians say foreign words every day, 17 per cent use them one to four times a week, and 7 per cent say them only once every few months.

However, 24 per cent of Russians use archaic Russian words and phrases in their speech, reviving their native language. Besides, 33 per cent of the respondents are sure that in European countries, they also use some Russian words in everyday communication. Finally, almost half of Russians (48 per cent) believe that over the past decade, the number of those who know or learn Russian has increased significantly.

Ru-Main, 14.04.2021 

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