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Thread: Fe/Fi question

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    Default Fe/Fi question

    Here is the context:
    There are five people in a meeting room. Four of them speak English as their mother tongue but also speak fluent Spanish. One of them only speaks Spanish.

    So the natural thing to do would be to speak Spanish so everyone could understand what is being said. However the four English speaking people discuss mostly in English and don't particularly care that one Spanish speaking person doesn't understand anything.

    Question:
    What function are the four people neglecting - Fe or Fi? What type would be most likely to neglect a person like that and what type the least? I assume Fe is missing here.

    Also what function is the Spanish speaking fellow neglecting if he doesn't say anything or complain but instead just keeps silent and listens to a language he doesn't understand. Is it Fe or Se perhaps?

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    Answer to the first question: it really depends on what's going on in the heads of the four people, and how they are seeing the lone person. We could go either way.

    Answer to the second question: similar to the above.

    Point to remember: it's not about what they are doing, but why they are doing (or not doing it).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post
    Answer to the first question: it really depends on what's going on in the heads of the four people, and how they are seeing the lone person. We could go either way.

    Answer to the second question: similar to the above.

    Point to remember: it's not about what they are doing, but why they are doing (or not doing it).
    Mmm...ok. If they would speak English because there is a lot of things that need to be discussed and they are somewhat more fluent in English and thus prefer to use it over Spanish. So they don't particularly consider whether the Spanish speaking guy likes it or not. They are not trying to bully or shut him out or anything. Just kind of dismiss the Spanish speaking guy because he seems irrelevant to big parts of the discussion and they figure that it is easier to discuss in English for the most part. So they don't mean any harm but don't much care about the Spanish speaking person either.

    If we add there that the four English speaking people are somewhat more familiar to each other than they are to the Spanish speaking person does it change anything?

    Then, in what situation would YOU behave like the four English speaking people or the Spanish speaking person?

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    I would hope that people of any type would see that behavior of that type is really rude. I'd say it's kind of anti Fi and anti Fe. Like it hurts the relationship with the excluded person, and having someone hang out there who is unable to contribute would seem to be a real mood-killer.

    It bothers me personally because I worry about how the lone Spanish speaker would feel in that situation.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom View Post
    I would hope that people of any type would see that behavior of that type is really rude. I'd say it's kind of anti Fi and anti Fe. Like it hurts the relationship with the excluded person, and having someone hang out there who is unable to contribute would seem to be a real mood-killer.

    It bothers me personally because I worry about how the lone Spanish speaker would feel in that situation.
    Well I can tell you that it bothers me a LOT. I have experienced similar situations lately.

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    Quote Originally Posted by XoX View Post
    Well I can tell you that it bothers me a LOT. I have experienced similar situations lately.
    Then you should probably punch these people in the face. Emotionally.
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    A personal anecdote about that, then an analysis --

    In South Africa, I was working in a mainly Afrikaans-speaking area. Educated people are fluent in English, but Afrikaners usually are sensitive about the language and prefer to speak it among themselves.

    Although I can grasp the meaning of written Afrikaans texts, I never bothered to try to learn to speak it (useless).

    So, once, there was going to be a "department lunch event". I arrived together with 4 Afrikaners (two men and two women), a bit early, and we sat at the same table.

    Although with me, individually, they spoke in English, gradually the whole table was speaking in Afrikaans. Since I don't speak Afrikaans, and honestly I wasn't interested at all in whatever drivel they were saying, I went *shrug* and "good" and started reading a newspaper.

    Some people may think it was an ostentatious gesture - it wasn't. It was really like, "good, they have a chance to speak in Afrikaans, I have a chance to read the newspaper".

    The bizarre thing is that later one of them accused ME of being anti-social, since "you preferred to read the newspaper rather than talk to us". I told him, "are you nuts? You were all speaking in Afrikaans". Then he said nothing.
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    Now, the analysis -- I think that, when these things happen, is because the "majority language" group get caught in their common Fe atmosphere, which naturally "drifts" into the language they are all most comfortable in, because it's the one which achieves optimal Fe status. They may start to speak in the language of the "lone" guy, but then someone will use the majority language to make a point better, maybe tell a joke, and then it starts.

    I see it as the equivalent of a group starting to talk about sports, even if one person knows nothing and cares nothing about it. What counts is the optimized common atmosphere.

    So I don't think they are deliberately and consciously ignoring the "lone person" -- the lone person is "out of their Fe radar screen", so to speak. In a way of speaking, that person ceases to exist.
    , LIE, ENTj logical subtype, 8w9 sx/sp
    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    Now, as to the lone person -- it depends.

    In professional situations, in South Africa, if it was important for me to understand what was going on, I would say "excuse me, could we speak in English, please?" and usually that would work.

    But in social situations - this time in Germany - I have seen non-German speakers standing around Germans speaking in groups, smiling like idiots, so that they would, I guess, somehow "fit in" -- even if they weren't understanding a word of what the others were saying.

    Personally, in these situations, if I speak both languages, in social occasions I take the person to the side and offer to talk a bit -- but often, it is interesting, the person prefers to join the "majority", even if not understanding a word.
    Last edited by Expat; 01-07-2008 at 10:34 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post

    The bizarre thing is that later one of them accused ME of being anti-social, since "you preferred to read the newspaper rather than talk to us". I told him, "are you nuts? You were all speaking in Afrikaans". Then he said nothing.
    lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom View Post
    I would hope that people of any type would see that behavior of that type is really rude. I'd say it's kind of anti Fi and anti Fe. Like it hurts the relationship with the excluded person, and having someone hang out there who is unable to contribute would seem to be a real mood-killer.
    Not if the person somehow is off their radar screen - or if the person adopts a stance of "fitting in", such as smiling. Even if not understanding anything. In international environments, such situations are very very common.
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    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    To be honest, if I was there I probably wouldn't notice. I would just forget about the otehr person. Or if it was me I would be quiet and wait for reintegration.



    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post
    Now, the analysis -- I think that, when these things happen, is because the "majority language" group get caught in their common Fe atmosphere, which naturally "drifts" into the language they are all most comfortable in, because it's the one which achieves optimal Fe status. They may start to speak in the language of the "lone" guy, but then someone will use the majority language to make a point better, maybe tell a joke, and then it starts.

    I see it as the equivalent of a group starting to talk about sports, even if one person knows nothing and cares nothing about it. What counts is the optimized common atmosphere.

    So I don't think they are deliberately and consciously ignoring the "lone person" -- the lone person is "out of their Fe radar screen", so to speak. In a way of speaking, that person ceases to exist.
    Ha, how funny, that's precisely it. The person would simply disappear of the radar.

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    I think a lot of this depends on the type of situation. In expat's example it makes sense that it was not a problem. In XoX's example, we can tell it's a problem because of his reply that it bothers him. By the sound of it, it's in a meeting room, it has something to do with actual business so I personally wouldn't let that fly around me and I'd be forced to speak up, if it's work related then I wouldn't want to be left out. If they are just talking about a basketball game that happened the night before I couldn't imagine that I'd care.

    I've been in a situation much like this when I went to Mexico with an old roommate of mine, who was from Nogales, AZ on the border of Mexico. Whenever we went over into Mexico we'd meet up with his buddies he'd known for years. I know a small amount of spanish but usually enough to just get a handle on what's being talked about without knowing all the details. Well, when his friends were with us the conversations were 90% in spanish and if they wanted to ask me something or were talking directly to me then they spoke in english. I never really had a problem with it and for the most part just kept to myself while they were talking about things that I didn't really care or need to hear.

    Now, growing up... I lived in Germany and my mother is actually German. If she was around english speaking people then she always spoke english, even if she was with someone who was also fluent in German. She told me that it's rude to talk in a different language around people who don't know that language. I still think she's correct in saying that but i do believe there are times when it shouldn't be a problem.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom View Post
    I would hope that people of any type would see that behavior of that type is really rude. I'd say it's kind of anti Fi and anti Fe. Like it hurts the relationship with the excluded person, and having someone hang out there who is unable to contribute would seem to be a real mood-killer.

    It bothers me personally because I worry about how the lone Spanish speaker would feel in that situation.
    My sentiments exactly. Actually this has happened to me only it was just three people (even worse imo!) and I was the only one who didn't know Italian and they were just chatting away as if I wasn't even standing there. Rude.
    IEI-Fe 4w3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom View Post
    I would hope that people of any type would see that behavior of that type is really rude. I'd say it's kind of anti Fi and anti Fe. Like it hurts the relationship with the excluded person, and having someone hang out there who is unable to contribute would seem to be a real mood-killer.

    It bothers me personally because I worry about how the lone Spanish speaker would feel in that situation.
    i tend to think this is rude behavior.

    i don't know, when XoX wrote this i was actually reminded of this catalan kid who lived in the dorms with me while i lived in spain. i had one of my american friends over and the guy starts speaking in catalan going on about my friend's huge breasts, hoping that neither i nor my friend would understand (at least this is what i assumed he was doing. i can't come up with any other good reason to switch to catalan, mid-sentence, and talk about breasts in a hushed tone.) i thought it was rude. he did this constantly. perhaps this is me being paranoid, but i thought it was kind of rotten to do. sometimes my dad talks to me in spanish in front of my mom when he wants to say something that he doesn't want her to hear. of course she doesn't even need to know rudimentary spanish to understand that she's being talked about. and of course she yells at both of us for this, hah.

    i've been in the situation where i'm with a friend who only speaks english and we're in a group of people who are mostly speaking spanish, who may speak fairly good english. i don't really expect the spanish speakers to accommodate for the lone english speaker (although usually it seems like they'll do this a bit, then slip back into spanish accidentally.) usually if the english speaker asks i can volunteer some information about what's going on in the spanish conversation. i also really tend to worry about coming off as rude when i do this. i'm not trying to socially ostracize anyone.

    i had XoX's situation happen more with people who spoke catalan as their first language and spanish as their 2nd. they were more comfortable with catalan & it was a point of pride (sort of like expat's afrikaans situation.) i think the idea here is that it's not too horribly rude to do because you can usually understand pretty well between romance languages. usually i'd just sit back and absorb it because i actually was interested in becoming more fluent in it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Expat
    Now, the analysis -- I think that, when these things happen, is because the "majority language" group get caught in their common Fe atmosphere, which naturally "drifts" into the language they are all most comfortable in, because it's the one which achieves optimal Fe status.
    hah, i love this. i do think a lot of this boils down to group cohesion and bonding within the group.

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    I've had the opposite situation. I have an ENFp friend who is an American and doesn't speak Estonian. So when she visits, I keep shifting even casual conversations into English, because everyone speaks fluent English. This way she can join in whenever she has something to say and she's not excluded. But she usually just ignores us and reads a newspaper or something. (really.) And then one moment she told me that if we speak English, it makes her feel uncomfortable because she feels like she has to say something even when she doesn't have anything to say. And she told us to speak in Estonian. So go figure. Maybe the four people were doing the fifth a favor.
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    Recently I found discussions not the most important in creating atmosphere, when I with my parents visited family in Germany. They're in very good contact with neighbours, so we often met in larger groups, when some part spoke only german, some only polish, and some both. Discussions were being led in both languages at the same time and even when everyone was starting using german, I felt like taking part in it (although i didn't understand anything). Maybe that fifth person should also feel the atmosphere. Others would notice him then, if they really have a radar that Expat was talking about.

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    Interesting thoughts. I'm not yet sure about where I stand. I can see now that my own opinion is dependent on the context.

    Context 1: Coffee room or other "leisurely" place
    I don't have much problems if people dismiss other people in these kind of places. E.g. I remember once having an interesting discussion with someone in Finnish and then a "foreigner" joined us and started small talking in English. Well we had no interest in speaking English or small talking as we had limited time and interesting subject. So we kind of politely said couple of words but then switched back to talking in Finnish together. That was our personal discussion and he didn't belong to that discussion. We both felt a bit guilty about not including him but then shrugged and kept on talking with each other.

    Context 2: Important work meeting
    I have problems if people, who should be aware of what is talked about, are excluded from what is being said. It makes me really really angry to the point of being aggressive. It is unfair, uneffective, shitty, annoying, aristocratic... It slowly destroys my concentration as the growing annoyance about the situation builds up to the point I make a big deal about it. I could actually walk out of the room if the situationj doesn't improve after I bring it up and there was no change in the group behavior. Then I am also kind of annoyed about people who just sit there excluded, not understanding a word and smiling and looking dumb. I try to somehow support them and include them but at the same time feel like kicking their butt to get them to wake up. And here is good to mention that I don't mind if people are silent in meetings. It is a different thing. But if you just sit there listening to language you don't understand or at least showing your disapproval somehow e.g. by leaving then it annoys me (but not nearly as much as the exclusive group behavior). I kind of feel like I have an obligation to "protect" these excluded people and so it feels like a personal burden to have them there being exluced, heh.

    What's the verdict on that?

    One thing that puzzles me is that people can somehow "forget" that someone is present. I am always pretty acutely aware of who is present and who is included and who is excluded and so on. It seems very foreign to me to not notice someone is sitting there excluded.

    Edit:
    I needed to add that when I have been excluded from the group in the past (not in language sense but other sense) then I tend to leave the group pretty fast. Funnily if I sense a rejection of myself I tend to leave but if I sense an (unfair) rejection of someone else then I tend to defend them.

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