buona volontà

  • The English word goodwill means a disposition or resolution to act honestly and straightforwardly toward other people, and an expectation that they will act in the same way towards you. Is this really what buona volontà means in Italian? I have seen it explained as the commitment, ability and desire to apply oneself to a task, which is not at all the same thing. Indeed WordReference uses buona volontà as an equivalent for 'willingness': "The teacher was pleased by his students' willingness to learn" = L'insegnante era compiaciuta della buona volontà degli studenti nell'apprendimento.

    I'm adding that, based on the context, 'avere buona volonta' ' can simply be rendered with 'trying' in different flavors.

    "Bisogna che ci metti un po' di buona volonta'" > "You just have to try hard"

    "Devi dimostrare un po' di buona volonta' " > "You gotta show that you are trying (making an effort)"