HomeQ&AWhy aren't teachers allowed to teach "curse words" in Spanish?

Why aren't teachers allowed to teach "curse words" in Spanish?

2
votes

Original question: why aint teachers allowed to teach us curse words in spanish? its unfair we have the rights to learn espiecially me!!

6636 views
updated ABR 24, 2010
edited by 00494d19
posted by wonder4
I haven't heard that word "ain't" in a while. I thought it had disappeared. Wecome to the forum. - 0074b507, ABR 21, 2010
There are other sites (especially chat sites) where you can learn all of the palabrotas that you desire. - 0074b507, ABR 21, 2010
I am going to leave this thread, let's see what people have to say, interesting, should teachers actually teach them? - 00494d19, ABR 22, 2010
I don't think teachers are the best choice here, unless they're Spanish. You should ask your Spanish friends or look in the internet. - swing, ABR 24, 2010

15 Answers

7
votes

Perhaps they are waiting for their students to learn English first.

updated ABR 22, 2010
posted by 008f2974
*Aplauso* - puravidacanuck, ABR 21, 2010
lol, gettimg my vote - 00494d19, ABR 22, 2010
voting - --Mariana--, ABR 22, 2010
Sorry dogbert "not voting" at what point do you decide that they know English "well enough" ? - ian-hill, ABR 22, 2010
Well, a, do you think they should at least know how to spell or talk at this point? - 00494d19, ABR 22, 2010
Well yes, But English spelling is so illogical that in my opinion too much emphasis on it "kills" creativity. - ian-hill, ABR 22, 2010
If I thought someone genuinely needed help with English, I'd be happy to help, but I don't think we need to indulge those that are obviously trolling. - 008f2974, ABR 22, 2010
3
votes

One reason that teachers don't is because it would be very difficult. To properly teach them would require doing so at a very advanced level. The proper/appropriate use of obscenities requires an intimate knowledge of the culture (its taboos, customs and prejudices). With most modern dictionaries, you can look up obscenities to your heart's content and find "translations". However, if you attempt to incorporate them into your speech, you will probably sound silly. More than any other single class of words, they are used for their emotional content (quite often the literal meaning makes no sense at all).

If you find confusing the (lack of) correspondence between 'gustar' and 'to like' or between 'to be' and 'ser'/estar', you will find understanding palabrotas even more difficult. If you attempt to use them without understanding them, instead of sounding 'cool' (which, I assume is your intention), you will sound 'weird'.

updated ABR 24, 2010
posted by samdie
Maybe that is why teachers should "explain" them - not encourage them of course. - ian-hill, ABR 22, 2010
good on sam - 00494d19, ABR 22, 2010
3
votes

When I hear someone curse, I think to myself: "uncultured," "mal educado." It's not something I care for my students to learn or utilize, in any language. When a language can express so much that's beautiful, why use ugly words?

updated ABR 24, 2010
posted by tennismom
great, voting:) - 00494d19, ABR 22, 2010
I am not sure about Spanish and English, but in my language we have some slight curse words that doesn't have even negative meaning, but we still use them. It's not rude and sound nice, as it's from old language layers. - swing, ABR 24, 2010
3
votes

Because those are the words we end up teaching ourselves! But really I guess it would detract from the whole teacher-student professionality paradigm. Besides, many curse words are unique to countries. Spanish teachers (especially on, let's say, the high school level) shy away from teaching vocabulary and other language phenomenon that aren't mostly universal in the language (for instance I had never heard of 'vos' until I got off the plane in Costa Rica-and my teacher learned Spanish here!).

Now I agree with the above comment. If you really want to know some curses you could probably persuade your teacher after class. Better yet, go to a bar in a Latin country and pick a fight! You could ask the guy to repeat slowly so you can nail the pronunciation of his slurred and drunken profanity.

Either way, the important part is to have fun learning, and if cursing floats your boat I full-heartedly support you my smut-mouthed friend hahaha.

updated ABR 23, 2010
posted by puravidacanuck
Do you really prefer your students to pick a fight in a bar rather than explain a few curse words i n a classroom? Or were you joking? - ian-hill, ABR 22, 2010
Who is your "smut-mouthed" friend? - it is not clear from the above. - ian-hill, ABR 22, 2010
I feel the tone of my post reflects that of the original. If you're looking for a serious discussion you picked the wrong thread. - puravidacanuck, ABR 23, 2010
3
votes

Somewhere, in a recent thread, a contributor said something in which I really believe: "Words are Power". That is one reason why I have made an effort to develop an adequate vocabulary in any language I learn, and why I relish learning new words, and new meanings to the words I know.

To me, the problem with curse words is not the words themselves. Many so-called "foul words" have rather harmless, innocent meanings. For example a favorite in Hispanic cultures, "Car@jo", is said to originally mean the lookout's basket in an antique ship - the crow's nest.

But we call them "curse words" because of the violent intention behind them; an intention to curse, to cause evil by the power of the word.

Therefore, in my opinion, curse words should not be taught at schools any more than hair-pulling, slapping, shoving or any other form of violence should be taught. Verbal violence is just as bad, or worse, than any form of physical violence (point in case, that poor girl that committed suicide because she could not stand the constant bullying from her school mates).

If you wish to learn to be a violent person, be the way of the word or by the way of the sword, fine - do so by your own means, in your own time, in your own space. But schools should not be the place to learn nor practice any kind of violence.

updated ABR 22, 2010
posted by Gekkosan
genial gekko - 00494d19, ABR 22, 2010
2
votes

Not referring to what should happen on this site, but it is good to know when a word has a foul connotation. I can't recall what I was writing the other day , but one of the lesser used definitions was kind of pornographic. It would be embarrasing to use that word accidentally in public and perhaps not even know what may have really been said. I wouldn't mind seeing a list of words that could get you in trouble like that. Even without the undesired alternate definition I would probably look for a different word to avoid potential misunderstanding.

updated ABR 22, 2010
posted by nizhoni1
When your learning is isolated to a classroom and not in the context of culture I think that kind of error would be more likely - nizhoni1, ABR 22, 2010
You get my vote Niz. - ian-hill, ABR 22, 2010
2
votes

Our teachers never taught them in English; we had to learn them outside the classroom. So why should Spanish class be any different...you're on your own.

updated ABR 22, 2010
posted by --Mariana--
Aquí tiene señor. Respuesta perfecta. - Goyo, ABR 22, 2010
I learnt nearly all my English outside the classroom. But students learning English in a country where English is not the language do not have that option. - ian-hill, ABR 22, 2010
1
vote

It's all about context.

If a phrase is in a Spanish novel then it should be taught with no censorship. Quite a few Spanish films such as those by Almodóvar use "street language" and I see no reason not to accurately translate the phrases.

Here in the UK and to a lesser extent in the US, phrases once considered as swear words are now routinely expressed on TV, in the press and so on.

However, to just teach them gratuitously seems pointless. An interesting thing I've noticed is that in Spain there are words very commonly used which would raise eyebrows in the more puritanical English homes. Probably that goes both ways.

What's important to me is to be sure of the "register" of such words and phrases. What might seem to be appropriate to shout at a Barca game, would not go down well at a job interview.

Speaking of register, it's worth knowing when you speak to the guy behind the counter at the local colmado, that there is a distinction between asking him ¿Tiene huevos? and ¿Hay heuvos?

More tea vicar?

updated ABR 24, 2010
edited by lagartijaverde
posted by lagartijaverde
1
vote

Why should your Spanish teachers teach you curse words in Spanish if your English teachers don't teach you curse words in English? The answer is because they don't want to hear their students using this type of language. No one should be speaking it anyway. cool smile

updated ABR 22, 2010
posted by fiddleplayer93
That's Shakespeare wiped out then. - lagartijaverde, ABR 22, 2010
"Country matters..." :-) - lagartijaverde, ABR 22, 2010
1
vote

I've actually been waiting for Paralee to come out with Lesson 5.1: Palabrotas. Wouldn't that be a riot? tongue rolleye

But actually, wonder4 does have a point:

we have the rights to learn

Yes you do, young man! And we have the right to refrain from teaching you!

Why don't you take the money you would have used at the video game arcade and go down to your local Borders, or Barnes and Noble, or some other high end bookstore and buy a book that gives you the info you want?

There are tons of them, and tons more on Amazon.com

Buena suerte amigo. smile

updated ABR 22, 2010
posted by Goyo
1
vote

I'd support it, not necessarily from the angle of "Students, I'm going to teach you how to swear," but moreso from a preventative standpoint. I definitely think there's value to be found in informing people if there is a common second meaning to a word, or if someone else with less than polite language happens to say something to you, you'll know the strength of their words.

updated ABR 22, 2010
posted by skygoneblue
good point - nizhoni1, ABR 22, 2010
1
vote

You could ask the teacher privately for he/she to teach you some "curse" words... raspberry raspberry raspberry (Just trying to help. Plz don't flag me~)

updated ABR 22, 2010
edited by Edwardcooper
posted by Edwardcooper
1
vote

I am not sure if we should "teach" them - usually one way or another they seem to be the words that "stick" in the minds of students anyway.

But we should respond when asked by students but in a way that reflects the group we are teaching.

I took a risk (of being dismissed) with some young adults in an advanced class and spent the whole 90 minutes away from the standard material on the "F" word.

You have never seen such a motivated and animated classroom!!

The reason was that it was different and introduced all sorts of other language in a new way.

The participation level was fantastic, and they ALL turned up for the next class.

updated ABR 22, 2010
edited by ian-hill
posted by ian-hill
Good way to teach phrasal verbs: up, over etc:-) - lagartijaverde, ABR 22, 2010
I can't edit the above for some reason. - ian-hill, ABR 22, 2010
I remember teaching a very good class on Journalistic English which focussed on the headline "Fan hits ****" - lagartijaverde, ABR 22, 2010
Ho hum..."Fan hits shirt" - lagartijaverde, ABR 22, 2010
0
votes

Yo como maestro me avergonzaría de decir las palabrotas frente a la clase aún si fuera "cultural". Quizá los alumnos mejor deban comprar un libro sobre el tema y estudiarlo por ellos mismos. Si el maestro enseñara palabrotas tendría a muchos padres de familia encima con reclamos.

updated ABR 22, 2010
posted by AntMexico
Yes that could happen - but it not when I did my class on the "F" word. I guess the students didn't tell their parents. - ian-hill, ABR 22, 2010
0
votes

Well, interesting question, should teachers actually teach curse words in Spanish lessons?

We do not teach or allow cursing in any language on this site, but the question is interesting.-

updated ABR 22, 2010
posted by 00494d19
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