Spanish: An Introduction/About Spanish
Introduction: this is a 0-level lesson. It gives the opportunities for the students to study what Spanish is and get in touch with its distribution and development. Each line contains background and a space for students work called the "study field". In this 0-level lesson students have the ability to meet an instructor via skype (look for: juan-de-v). Important: note that teacher Juan is not a native English or Spanish speaker! At the end of each chapter there is a place for general discussion and brainstorming of ideas.
Language tree[edit | edit source]
Background[edit | edit source]
Spanish belongs to the Indo-European language family. This group of languages contains several languages spoken primarily in Europe, India, and western Asia. Spanish is also a Romance language. English is a Germanic language. Russian is a Slavic language. This is shown in the picture:
1) Give examples of other Romance languages that would belong in the empty bubbles:
French, Italian, Latin, Romanian, Portuguese
- Yeah. Something more? Imagine that Romance languages appeart after Roman Empire in Mediteranean (sorry for bad spelling).--Juan 13:25, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Portuguese, Catalan, Romanian OK. Thats fine. --Juan 18:27, 17 August 2007 (UTC)
What about Greek ? Sylvie 01:11, 27 August 2007
- Well, Greek doesnt belong to the family of Romance languages. It has its own family of Greek languages. Romance languages were born from Latin during the times of Roman Empire. See: w:Greek and w:Romance languages.--Juan 09:25, 29 August 2007 (UTC)
Spanish,French,Portuguese,Italian,Romanian Marie12 11:40, 9 October 2007 (UTC)Maryrose
The Genesis of Spanish[edit | edit source]
The Spanish Language is also known as Castillan or Rastellan.In its earliest form, it was known as the Old Spanish.But onwards the 16th century,it was called modern Spanish.In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries,it was called classical Spanish because of its literary accomplishments at that time.Marie12 11:58, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
Where Spanish is in Use[edit | edit source]
Spanish as an official language is e.g. in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, Spain, Uruguay, & Venezuela.
1) is the list of coutries complete?
Nope. It's also spoken in significant parts of the population in Andorra, Belize, Gibraltar and the United States.Marie12 11:54, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
And it's well spoken on the Dutch Antillen, Curacao, Aruba and Bonaire.
What is Spanglish[edit | edit source]
1) Write a short definition of Spanglish ('Espanglish'), give examples:
Spanglish is the intermingling of english and spanish to create words that contain elements from both languages. ex: no problemo, el food-o, libriria, carpeta.
Nice. Look like you are native speaker:)--Juan 18:27, 17 August 2007 (UTC)
Spanglish is a blend of the English-language words for "Spanish" and "English".It has also been used for many years in the vernacular to denote a more jocular "mix-up" of Spanish and English where the speaker makes an English word "sound Spanish". Examples are: El Tubbo: for an overweight person snackolas party-ola pizza-mundo Marie12 12:02, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
Other Languages in Spain[edit | edit source]
Other languages in Spain include Catalan, Galician and Basque. There are several other minority languages which have much small communities that speak them and which are not protected by law to the same extent as these.
1) Where are these spoken?
Catalan (català) is a Romance language, the national language of Andorra, and a co-official language in the Spanish autonomous communities of Balearic Islands, Catalonia and Valencia (in the latter with the name of Valencian), and in the city of L'Alguer in the Italian island of Sardinia. It is also spoken, although with no official recognition, in the autonomous communities of Aragon (in La Franja) and Murcia (in El Carxe) in Spain, and in Northern Catalonia, a historical region of Catalonia in southern France, which is more or less equivalent to the département of the Pyrénées-Orientales. 1 --Friviere 12:26, 16 July 2007 (UTC)
- Nice. Yeah. Wikipedia is a big source of information.--Juan 13:25, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Basque (euskara) is spoken in an area straddling the Spanish-French border on the Atlantic side.
Galician (galego) is spoken in the Galician autonomous community by (still) the majority of the population and a bit more outer the borders, in Asturias and Castilla-Leon aut. comm. However, Galicians have emigrated a lot during XIX century (Cuba, Mexico and South America: Argentina, Brasil and Venezuela) and XX (Europe during Franco's time: France, Switzerland and Germany; rest of Spain last half: Ireland, Canarias, Catalonia, Madrid and Spanish Mediterranean coast). Since that, Galician could be sometimes heard in this places, as long as they keep related to the homeland by means of Galician centers or come back on holidays (and of course, if they are not shy or embarrased about speaking it, as it usually happens). It's still academically controversial if the variant of As Ellas (San Martiño de Trevello, San Martín de Trevejo, río Ejas, Cáceres province), very far away from Galicia and only connected through Portuguese language areas but strongly vigorous, is a Galician descendant, Portuguese descendant or Asturian descendant language.
2) What are their origins?
Origins of the Catalan Language: The Catalan language developed by the 9th century from Vulgar Latin on both sides of the eastern part of Pyrenees mountains (counties of Roussillon, Empuries, Besalú, Cerdanya, Urgell, Pallars and Ribagorça). It shares features with Gallo-romance and Ibero-romance, and it could be said to be in its beginnings no more than an eccentric dialect of Occitan (or of Western Romance).
On the 15th century, during Valencian Golden Age, Catalan language reached its highest cultural splendor, which could not be comparable again until La Renaixença, 4 centuries later. 2 --Friviere 12:31, 16 July 2007 (UTC)
Basque is thought to be one of the languages spoken in Western Europe before the arrival of the Indo-European tribes. Aside from lexical borrowings, it is totally unrelated to any of the surrounding languages (Spanish, French, Catalan, etc.).
- And Galician with Basque also originate in Vulgar Latin?--Juan 13:25, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
- Galician does. Basque is a language isolate. The Jade Knight 20:34, 25 July 2007 (UTC)
- Galician is very related to Portuguese, more than to Spanish. G and P come from the same language in the Middle Age, galego-portuguese, very strong in speakers and in prestige, even in the Castilian king court (?) of Toledo, south to Madrid. In fact, Portuguese in Portugal could be understood as the descendant of the G-P during the Reconquista. Later on, Portugal became an independent county (and a kingdom definitively in 1640), and the two languages started to differ more and more. Though North Portuguese and South Galician are still strongly (phonetical, economical and even cultural) related (and even more now with European Interreg Region structures, despite the Portuguese of schools is based on Coimbra-Lisboa standard), there is usually not a feeling of speaking the same language, unless for the reintegracionismo movement.
What’s the Difference Between "español" and "castellano"?[edit | edit source]
Yeah that’s a question. So what’s the difference?
Well, according to Castellano article, it is the synonym of "Spanish". If you want to contrast it with different language from Spain, you use "Castellano". Otherwise you use "Spanish". When I asked a lady from Argentina about the language they spoke, she said: "Actually, it's Castellano, but you can say that it's Spanish"
- Yeah, thats right:-)--Juan 18:06, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
Spanish Languages are in fact several, even when the most known is Castellano, also must be considered Spanish Languages: Basc, Catalan, Galician and Aranese, among others.--Friviere 12:34, 16 July 2007 (UTC)
- So you think, if we are talking in here about Spanish languages Aranese should be mentioned. By which means is to important?--Juan 13:25, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Indigenous Languages of Latin America[edit | edit source]
1) write down some indigenous languages of Latin America:
Yaqui, Tarahumara, Achuar, Kamsa, Quechua, Otomi, Miskitu, Kuna, Ticuna
Good. Dont know all of them, but Quechua, Otomi and Kuna are from that region:-)--Juan 18:27, 17 August 2007 (UTC)