Alexandra Aikhenvald (Linguist)

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Born: September 1, 1957 (age 55)
Alexandra Aikhenvald was born in an assimilated (Russian-speaking) Jewish family in Moscow. She was fascinated by languages from early childhood, picking up some Spanish from her parent’s Spanish flatmate, and dreaming of majoring in Latin and Classical studies in university.[2] A friend taught her German during her high school years, and she also mastered French. Her Jewish surname created many difficulties for her in her pursuit of formal studies within the Soviet system. In an interview on an ABC program she commented:’ ‘Jews will always remain second-class citizens in Russia, no matter how hard they work.’
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