We’ve already heard it a million times before...and it´s true: Spanish is one of the most important languages in the world and it’s even on its way to be as well the most spoken language worldwide. In consideration of these facts, we are constrained to become aware of the diversity of the Spanish language, which is the mother-tongue of around 370 million inhabitants of almost all Latin American countries, Spain, the Caribbean islands and some parts of Africa.
If we regard the situation in Spain, we soon discover the huge range of predominant language varieties in this country. Beside the official language, el castellano or español, there actually exist 5 further co-official languages spoken in some of the Spanish autonomous communities. Hence, bilingualism is considered as normal and common practice of everyday life in some parts of Spain.
Taking on the other hand a look at the diversity concerning the Spanish language spoken in Latin America, it seems like entering in a new world of different conventional expressions in Spanish, vocalisms and phrases. The Latin American Spanish derives from the Spanish conqueror’s language, spread among the citizens of the so called “New World” from the 15th century onwards. Due to this influence, the Spanish language evolved in different ways, according to the cultural level of each Latin American region.
In general, we can distinguish between the linguistic features of the castellano spoken in Spain and the Spanish of Latin America. Especially in the field of translation it is usual to differentiate three types of Spanish language: Spanish of Spain, Spanish of Latin America and Neutral or Standard Spanish. Thus, the South Americans are rather used to the Indefinido to describe recent actions, while the Spaniards prefer the Pretérito Perfecto for this kind of purpose. In addition to the grammar facts, we notice a diversity regarding phonetic aspects, like accents and pronunciation of words. Furthermore, the vocabulary used in South America tends to be more archaistic than the Spanish in Spain, mostly due to the fact, that historical worlds were replaced by new expressions, which are more appropriate to the modern castellano of Spain.
Another significant difference between the two “Spanish Worlds” is the use of the 2nd person plural (vosotros). This grammatical form doesn´t exist in Latin America and is therefore substituted by the 3rd person plural (ustedes), without distinguishing between familiar and formal forms. Moreover, it’s very common in Latin America to use the so called voseo between family members (use of “vos” instead of “tu” and “ti”). As a consequence, it wouldn’t be surprising to hear a sentence like “vos te debés lavar mejor”.
In the presence of such diversity, it turns out to be really difficult for students to master the Spanish language and to know about all its particularities. The Spanish language school don Quijote offers Spanish classes in 12 cities all over Spain and disposes of several destinations in 10 Latin American countries. With don Quijote you’ll have the chance not only to increase your Spanish skills, but also to experience Spanish or Latin American culture and to get to know its tradition and lifestyle!
Watch the video: Qué difícil es hablar el español