I believe it's because Slovenians are more exposed to Serbo-Croatian than Serbians/Croats/Bosniaks are to Slovenian. I'm a living example, I've pretty much never been exposed to Slovenian language until I was an adult.In my experience, Slovenians can undestand Serbo-Croatian quite well, but this is not the case the other way around. What is the reason for this one-sided intelligibility, I don't know.
Were the three official languages really equal in ex-Yugoslavia ? Could a Slovene or a Macedonian live without knowing "serbo-croatian" (as the language was called at that time) ? Were official documents available in all three languages ?
I was born in 1991 and I had a hard time understanding Serbian when I was in Belgrade. Sure, I can understand words that are similar (though there are false friends, obviously), but with little Serbian exposure I had, it's hard for me to understand words that are different.
I mean, how would a Slovene without much exposure to Serbian or Croatian language know what štakor or klokan mean. Serbian also has words like hiljada (which threw me off), unlike Croatian, which has tisuća (tisoč in Slovenian).
I think people that say Slovenes tend to understand Serbian pretty well base that on their own experience (high exposure to Serbian/Croatian). My sister was born in 2000 and has an even harder time understanding Serbian than me.
EDIT: Just remembered hearing uhvati ritam on radio and I had to google what uhvatiti means (I kind of assumed what it could mean from context, but still).
I'm also interested in languages in general, but in a more casual sense (not in a scholarly sense) and I mostly focus on learning German and Spanish, so that might explain my not-so-great exposure to Croatian/Serbian, I guess.I agree totally. I am interested in languages so it all comes as a good intellectual exercise to me, but I can see how an average person with no exposure might struggle.
Regarding hiljada/tisuća, there is also porodica/obitelj which is, bizarrely, slightly more understandable in Serbian than Croatian
Exactly, that's what was meant. The reason for the disproportionate intelligibility is the higher exposure from one side than the other. The exposure is the main reason for this.I think people that say Slovenes tend to understand Serbian pretty well base that on their own experience (high exposure to Serbian/Croatian). My sister was born in 2000 and has an even harder time understanding Serbian than me.
If the question is meant for me, then no, I talked to them in Slovenian (my attempt at Serbian would probably be unintelligible to them), but I mostly listened because I was there with a friend who can speak Croatian/Serbian (she has Croatian relatives).Did you talk to Serbians in English?
Which dialect would you suggest learning to an aspiring learner(me) who is still studying standard BCS? in hopes for a hopefully somewhat all-encompassing level of auditory intelligibility?The intelligibility is very asymmetrical. Slovenians can understand Serbian quite well, and certainly become fluent with little study (I am a living example of it).
Serbians cannot understand Slovenian very well because of our tendency to speak in dialects/regional variants in all but most formal occasions (our standard language is basically an artificial speech you need to learn in school), with wild sound developments and heavy vowel reduction. Our grammar is also a bit more complicated, for example the dual grammatical number, and a more varied plural declension.
The vocabulary is also an obstacle. We tend to use loads of German/Italian loanwords in our everyday speech which just aren’t known to Serbians. If you revert to using the ‘official’, Slavic-root words, then intelligibility improves.
Re: the writing system, most Slovenes cannot read Cyrillic. It was last taught in schools before 1990 (and then only for a year, according to my parents).
You mean which dialect of Slovenian? You can’t really learn them, they aren’t codified - you have to live in a place and pick it up organically so to speak. Go for the standard language.Which dialect would you suggest learning to an aspiring learner(me) who is still studying standard BCS? in hopes for a hopefully somewhat all-encompassing level of auditory intelligibility?
If that doesn't exist what would be the relatively commonly accepted variant among a group of slovenes that come from everywhere