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Regional differences

Regional differences

Old Dec 6th 2008, 7:24 pm
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Default Regional differences

Are the regional differences within Spain as large as the media wants to portray them? I mean that in the Basque Country, Catalonia and Galicia they have their own languages and none of them would like to be called Spanish but it is still possible to live in any of those regions speaking Spanish, or what?

I think that Catalonia must be a region where you really must learn the local language, Catalan, in order to get by. In the Basque-country or in Galicia the speakers of the regional languages are in the minority.

As Spain is a fairly vast country there are surely differences also within the Spanish-speaking areas. Madrid is one of the richest regions within the EU while Andalucia is one of the poorest.
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 7:28 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

Originally Posted by THR
Are the regional differences within Spain as large as the media wants to portray them? I mean that in the Basque Country, Catalonia and Galicia they have their own languages and none of them would like to be called Spanish but it is still possible to live in any of those regions speaking Spanish, or what?

I think that Catalonia must be a region where you really must learn the local language, Catalan, in order to get by. In the Basque-country or in Galicia the speakers of the regional languages are in the minority.

As Spain is a fairly vast country there are surely differences also within the Spanish-speaking areas. Madrid is one of the richest regions within the EU while Andalucia is one of the poorest.

I've learned recently that Catalan is the first language in schools in Catalonia now....... and even 20 years ago shop signs were bilingual Spanish/Catalan; I know we've people in the region, hope they pick up on this thread.
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 7:38 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

Oh, my god YES!

It get's a bit tiring on your third English class of the day you start talking AGAIN about why local Catalan people hate Madrid and feel their taxes are used to support the rest of Spain (primarily Andalucia).

Barcelona is MEGA political, EVERYONE here has an opinion against the Spanish government.

Their main complaints are;

The AVE (why seville-madrid first??? Not Madrid-Barcelona)
The use of taxes generated in Catalaluna
The Madrid-centred media portrayal of Catalunya

In Barcelona, the people feel more 'European' than Spanish.

I can understand some of the points raised though, and actually a lot of their complaints spring from the fact that the government has not encouraged investment and development in other areas of Spain... Just my opinion!
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 7:40 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

Catalan is spoken everywhere, EVERYWHERE in Barcelona. Spanish is not a language that is widely appreciated here!
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 7:50 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

Originally Posted by Sarleon
Catalan is spoken everywhere, EVERYWHERE in Barcelona. Spanish is not a language that is widely appreciated here!
That's interesting. I would have thought it is the rural areas where people don't speak any other languages than Catalan but Barcelona being a big city must have a lot of international feeling about it which includes speakers of other languages as well, including Spanish.
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 7:53 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

It's for political reasons - they honestly don't really want to be associated with the rest of Spain.

If you speak Spanish, they will make the effort, but the locals in Barcelona will speak Catalan as a first choice.

Needless to say, many of them are Basque country sympathisers too..
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 7:57 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

Oh - and its also compounded by the number of immigrants here - the people are lovely when you get to know them, but that is the problem -GETTING to know them. They don't want much to do with immigrants/tourists, unless they are making money out of them!

I guess that sounds awfully negative - but it is the reality if you live and work here!
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 8:04 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

Originally Posted by Sarleon
Oh - and its also compounded by the number of immigrants here - the people are lovely when you get to know them, but that is the problem -GETTING to know them. They don't want much to do with immigrants/tourists, unless they are making money out of them!

I guess that sounds awfully negative - but it is the reality if you live and work here!
Nationalism has its negative points And it's not just displayed in anti-foreigner outbursts...
It's funny though - I find that the Basque people I've met (not a great number I admit) tend to be very similar to Spanish. Yes I know it's a very broad generalisation. But the Catalans do seem more intense, more driven, perhaps even more gifted? It's such a shame that they seem to be heading down an isolationist hate-foreigners/reserve all jobs to Catalan educated people that will harm their economy- an economy which was once streets ahead of Madrid, but no longer.
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 8:07 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

Originally Posted by THR
Are the regional differences within Spain as large as the media wants to portray them? I mean that in the Basque Country, Catalonia and Galicia they have their own languages and none of them would like to be called Spanish but it is still possible to live in any of those regions speaking Spanish, or what?

I think that Catalonia must be a region where you really must learn the local language, Catalan, in order to get by. In the Basque-country or in Galicia the speakers of the regional languages are in the minority.

As Spain is a fairly vast country there are surely differences also within the Spanish-speaking areas. Madrid is one of the richest regions within the EU while Andalucia is one of the poorest.
I've been waiting to post a similar question so thought I'd incorporate it in this thread without starting a new one, if you don't mind. I was just wondering if any of you were living in regions where one of the regional languages was spoken apart from Spanish. Has anyone managed to learn the regional language as well as Spanish? Has anyone experienced any problems because they can't speak Catalan, Basque, Galician, Valencian, Aragonese, Bable......

I live in Andalucia. The people where I live feel quite remote from Madrid and always have a few words to say about the Catalans!!

Does anyone have any children who go to Spanish state school where their children are taught in one of the regional languages?

Thanks for bringing up a really interesting topic.
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 8:08 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

unless they are making money out of them!
There's the old joke about the Catalan worried about his fridge - he worries about the light staying on when the door is closed. I suppose they are the butt of being tight in the same way that the Scots are.
Here's a typical Spanish joke about the Catalans:
Dos moscas hablando.
- Pues yo estas vacaciones me voy a ir al interior de la Península.
- Pues yo no. Yo me voy a ir a la Costa Brava a coger un moreno...
Pasan los días y se vuelven a encontrar , y la mosca que decía que iba a
ir a la costa, viene blanca...
- ¿Pero no decías que te ibas a ir a la Costa Brava?
- Si, pero me metí en el bolso de una catalana y no lo abrió para nada!.
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 8:18 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

If Sarleon's view is anything to go by, living in Catalonia is very difficult if you don't know Catalan.

I wonder are they only hostile towards Spanish and Spaniards while having no problem whatsoever speaking English to people from other countries.

This Catalonia vs the rest of Spain-divide was no news to me. I've always known that they really don't want to be associated with the rest of the country.
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 8:27 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

Originally Posted by steviedeluxe
Nationalism has its negative points

. But the Catalans do seem more intense, more driven, perhaps even more gifted? It's such a shame that they seem to be heading down an isolationist hate-foreigners/reserve all jobs to Catalan educated people that will harm their economy- an economy which was once streets ahead of Madrid, but no longer.
After almost a year of teaching the Catalans in Barcelona, I put their 'difference' down to their history and the locaton of the city - imagine Barcelona port in the time of fervent trading by sea - and I think we have found our modern Catalan!
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 8:33 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

Originally Posted by Sarleon
After almost a year of teaching the Catalans in Barcelona, I put their 'difference' down to their history and the locaton of the city - imagine Barcelona port in the time of fervent trading by sea - and I think we have found our modern Catalan!
What have you taught the Catalans? If you don't mind me asking.
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 8:55 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

English!
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Old Dec 6th 2008, 9:04 pm
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Default Re: Regional differences

Well, do you think that the locals treat you in a more friendly way because you are English and not Spanish?

Do people from the Spanish-speaking Spain move a lot to Catalonia? I mean, if they know they are considered as very unwelcome newcomers.
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