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Author Topic: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...  (Read 13111 times)

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Iris

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Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« on: November 27, 2013, 11:43:15 PM »
I have a student with an unusual (for Australia) name and have discovered that pretty much everyone pronounces it incorrectly. Let's say their name is Faust Etiquette. Pretty much the whole school calls them "Fast Etickettey" and it's what I was told their name was. Except when I asked them they said that no, their name is actually correctly pronounced "Faust Etiquette" but that they don't bother to correct people.

Which is fine, except I am being constantly corrected by colleagues when I in fact say Faust's name correctly. I'll say "Faust came 1st in that test" and they will say "It's Fast". With my close colleagues I said "Actually I asked them, and it's pronounced Faust Etiquette" but from force of habit they have gone back to the old, incorrect, pronunciation. With other colleagues I don't feel as though it is my place to make an issue out of it since the student has already effectively made that decision. If anything I think Faust would feel self conscious if people started changing how they spoke to him/her.

So, when a colleague corrects me I would love an Ehell phrase to deflect the conversation without getting into a tit-for-tat back at them. Suggestions?

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katycoo

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2013, 12:36:19 AM »
I thnk the response you've used in the past is perfect. "Faust is how he personally told me it is pronounced" is fine, and then drop it.  Don't correct them, just use it when they correct YOU.

sweetonsno

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2013, 01:14:53 AM »
I'd actually leave this one alone. I think it's best to refer to people in a way that they will be recognized, especially if the object of discussion is on board with the "wrong" name. (I don't know that it really is "wrong" if they accept the new moniker.) It just seems like it would be confusing.

If Faust would be embarrassed by people switching to the native pronunciation (rather than the clumsy-toungued English version of it), I think you should stick to referring him to Fast unless, perhaps, you are speaking to him directly. (Think of it like Paris… when you're speaking in French, you want to use "Paree;" when you're speaking in English, you sound kind of pretentious if you use the French pronunciation.)

Because this is another person, maybe you should ask him what his preference is. Does he want you to refer to him as Faust or Fast? If it's the former, how would he like you to address questions about his "real" name. Does he want you to correct them? Tell them that either one works?
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PastryGoddess

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2013, 01:53:57 AM »
I would reply "According to the student, this is how his name is pronounced" You can emphasize "the student" part if you'd like. 

My brother's name is Stephen, pronounced Ste-fen. When people see his name they pronounce it Stee-ven and if they hear it first and then spell it, he gets Stefan.

Our family go to phrase is "that's what his parents named him and that's how it's spelled"  As his sister I'll go the extra mile to make sure people get then pronunciation and spelling right.  However, as an instructor all you need to do is pronounce and spell his name correctly.  It's not up to you to make sure everyone else get's it right too.


ETA: bolded and edited for clarity
« Last Edit: November 28, 2013, 10:02:23 AM by PastryGoddess »

Iris

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2013, 02:17:45 AM »
"According to the student, this is how his name is pronounced"  You can emphasize "the student" part if you'd like. 

My brother's name is Stephen, pronounced Ste-fen. When people see his name they pronounce it Stee-ven and if they hear it first and then spell it, he gets Stefan.

Our family go to phrase is "that's what his parents named him and that's how it's spelled"  As his sister I'll go the extra mile to make sure people get then pronunciation and spelling right.  However, as an instructor all you need to do is pronounce and spell his name correctly.  It's not up to you to make sure everyone else get's it right too.

No I know that, but he has said that he prefers Faust, just not enough to correct people. It's just that when people take it on themselves to make sure that *I* get it right (even though I already have) that I don't quite know what to do. When I actually asked him he expressed a clear preference for Faust over Fast, so I have no intention of changing back to pronouncing it the common way. However, although he has a clear preference he is also quite shy so I don't think championing his cause would actually be his wishes, even if it did get him called by the right pronunciation.

Basically I want to stop people trying to make ME do the 'right' thing, without it turning into me telling THEM what to do. Perhaps just buckets of bean dip are required.
"Can't do anything with children, can you?" the woman said.

Poirot thought you could, but forebore to say so.

Danika

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2013, 03:07:44 AM »
I wouldn't bean dip. I'd be honest and say in as polite a tone as you can, "Actually, most folks have been mispronouncing his name. He told me himself that it's correctly pronounced Faust, and that he just gave up trying to correct people."

I've been having similar conversations with parents of my DD's classmates and they've taken it well. DD goes to school with a girl whose name is not native to our alphabet and so whoever tried to spell it phonetically and then put it on her birth certificate didn't do the best job.

Her name is spelled Sana. In preschool, the teachers pronounced it Saw naw. Now, in kindergarten, her teacher pronounces it San nuh (like Santa without the t).

It confused the kids who were in preschool with her, and they all had to learn to pronounce her name again. The little girl never corrects anyone.

Finally, I asked her father one day "How is your daughter's name supposed to be pronounced." He said it is supposed to be "Sun nuh."

When I refer to her, I pronounce it "Sun nuh" and I've had people reply "Oh, you mean San nuh?" And I'll say "Actually, her dad told me it's pronounced 'Sun nuh.'" I haven't had anyone argue with me yet.

CuriousParty

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2013, 07:45:12 AM »
I have found it helpful in these situations to use a tone of...I guess surprise and camaraderie? Kind of, we're all in this together and look what I found out! I'd say "You know, I thought that, too! Called him Fast for a whole year in my class! But I finally asked him and he said it's pronounce Faust, but he got embarrassed having to correct everyone all the time. Who knew!?"

nutraxfornerves

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #7 on: November 28, 2013, 09:01:24 AM »
By coincidence, I just finished posting on another forum about a US President who was actually accused of mispronouncing his own name.

According to the Theodore Roosevelt Center:
Quote
Theodore Roosevelt was often questioned – and sometimes challenged – about the pronunciation of his surname. His consistent response was that the first syllable sounded like the flower, “rose,” and that there were three syllables – rose-uh-velt. Simple, right?

However, the chairman of the Department on Reading and Speech Culture of the New York State Teachers’ Association, challenged TR on his own pronunciation. He argued "in a letter to the New York Sun that the majority of the people pronounce the name with only two syllables, the first using the same vowel sound as the word “room.” He closes his argument with a challenge, 'What is there to justify [the President] in his endeavor to perpetuate a practice against which are set the principles of usage?'"

The newspaper invited TR's uncle to do a rebuttal. "Robert Roosevelt then notes that, the surname being Dutch, the pronunciation rules are in fact entirely consistent, the double oo always being pronounced as in 'rose'."

[Theodore was president from1901-1909. He & Franklin Roosevelt were fifth cousins. Franklin's wife, Eleanor, was TR's niece.]

Nutrax
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PastryGoddess

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #8 on: November 28, 2013, 10:00:54 AM »
"According to the student, this is how his name is pronounced"  You can emphasize "the student" part if you'd like. 

My brother's name is Stephen, pronounced Ste-fen. When people see his name they pronounce it Stee-ven and if they hear it first and then spell it, he gets Stefan.

Our family go to phrase is "that's what his parents named him and that's how it's spelled"  As his sister I'll go the extra mile to make sure people get then pronunciation and spelling right.  However, as an instructor all you need to do is pronounce and spell his name correctly.  It's not up to you to make sure everyone else get's it right too.

No I know that, but he has said that he prefers Faust, just not enough to correct people. It's just that when people take it on themselves to make sure that *I* get it right (even though I already have) that I don't quite know what to do. When I actually asked him he expressed a clear preference for Faust over Fast, so I have no intention of changing back to pronouncing it the common way. However, although he has a clear preference he is also quite shy so I don't think championing his cause would actually be his wishes, even if it did get him called by the right pronunciation.

Basically I want to stop people trying to make ME do the 'right' thing, without it turning into me telling THEM what to do. Perhaps just buckets of bean dip are required.

see the first part of my response.  I probably should have bolded it.  You can say that back to the person who is correcting you.  But it only needs to be said once. If they keep pushing, then just drop the rope and move on either conversationally or physically. 

FauxFoodist

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #9 on: November 28, 2013, 12:56:56 PM »
I wouldn't bean dip. I'd be honest and say in as polite a tone as you can, "Actually, most folks have been mispronouncing his name. He told me himself that it's correctly pronounced Faust, and that he just gave up trying to correct people."

Pod.  I see nothing wrong with stating, "Actually, Faust told me it's pronounced "Faust," not "Fast" and leave it at that.  If the person wants to argue the point, I'd bean dip.  I've never encountered anyone doing this though (arguing the point).  The closest I've come to someone telling me how to pronounce something of mine was DH a few weeks ago.  He pronounces some words different from how anyone else I know does it (I think he goes with the old pronunciation or just doesn't know how the words are supposed to be pronounced).  My e-mail address has one of those words.  He tried telling me, "No, this is the way word is pronounced."  I told him, "No, this is MY e-mail address and this is how *I* pronounce it, which is the standard pronunciation of the word so stop telling me it's wrong."  He stopped.

I used to mispronounce my closest friend's name in junior high.  We were friends for 5-6 years before I learned I'd been saying it wrong (her name is Josie, pronounced "Jo-see" and I'd been calling her "Jo-zee").  When someone asked her in front of me why I said it wrong, Josie simply shrugged and moved on.  I was actually confused and continued mispronouncing it since she really didn't correct me and request I pronounce it the correct way (and I didn't hear the difference).

AmethystAnne

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #10 on: November 28, 2013, 03:06:20 PM »
Thank you, Nutrax! This is good to know. (I didn't know their family had Dutch roots)

By coincidence, I just finished posting on another forum about a US President who was actually accused of mispronouncing his own name.

According to the Theodore Roosevelt Center:
Quote
Theodore Roosevelt was often questioned – and sometimes challenged – about the pronunciation of his surname. His consistent response was that the first syllable sounded like the flower, “rose,” and that there were three syllables – rose-uh-velt. Simple, right?

However, the chairman of the Department on Reading and Speech Culture of the New York State Teachers’ Association, challenged TR on his own pronunciation. He argued "in a letter to the New York Sun that the majority of the people pronounce the name with only two syllables, the first using the same vowel sound as the word “room.” He closes his argument with a challenge, 'What is there to justify [the President] in his endeavor to perpetuate a practice against which are set the principles of usage?'"

The newspaper invited TR's uncle to do a rebuttal. "Robert Roosevelt then notes that, the surname being Dutch, the pronunciation rules are in fact entirely consistent, the double oo always being pronounced as in 'rose'."

[Theodore was president from1901-1909. He & Franklin Roosevelt were fifth cousins. Franklin's wife, Eleanor, was TR's niece.]

JenJay

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #11 on: November 28, 2013, 04:10:51 PM »
I have that problem with an actor's name. I pronounce it like he does, however several of my relatives, who are even bigger fans of his than I am, pronounce it differently. It used to be that when they'd correct me I said nothing but after a few years of this ridiculousness I now reply "Really? Well somebody needs to tell him that!"  :P

Danika

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #12 on: November 28, 2013, 04:31:13 PM »
Like Brett Favre. I believe he and most of America pronounce his last name "Farv" but it drives me nuts when I hear it that way because I grew up speaking French. I just try not to say his name or have discussions about him.  ;)

Outdoor Girl

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #13 on: November 28, 2013, 04:50:55 PM »
And the hockey player with the last name 'Byfuglian' that gets pronounced 'Bufflin'.  What?

JenJay, that wouldn't be Ralph Fiennes, would it?  Who pronounces it 'Rafe'?
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JenJay

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Re: Actually, YOU'RE doing it wrong...
« Reply #14 on: November 28, 2013, 05:08:12 PM »
And the hockey player with the last name 'Byfuglian' that gets pronounced 'Bufflin'.  What?

JenJay, that wouldn't be Ralph Fiennes, would it?  Who pronounces it 'Rafe'?

George Takei, actually. They still say "tak-eye" even though he says "ta-kay". So it's supposed to be Rafe? Good to know.