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demonize

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Is there any word or phrase in Spanish that is equivalent to the English "demonize"? (To characterize/represent someone as evil or diabolic.)

Examples:
Don't demonize him because of one mistake.
We tend to demonize our enemies.

2484 views
updated FEB 5, 2009
posted by mimi2

8 Answers

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I've never heard "demonizar", but it is clear what it means anyway. I've always heard "satanizar", with exactly the same meaning that "demonize" is meant to have.

updated FEB 5, 2009
posted by lazarus1907
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Thanks, James! Very insightful points there. And you're right -- something like "representar como malvado" seems much closer to what I'm trying to say. smile

James Santiago said:

My hunch is that a native author would phrase this idea differently. Maybe something like "representar como malvado," "representar como si fuera diabólico," etc.

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updated FEB 3, 2009
posted by mimi2
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Interesting question. Demonizar does seem to have currency, but it also seems to be a fairly new word (hence its absence from the DRAE), and may have come from the English. I did find many websites where demonizar was used in this way, but again, most of them seemed to be translations of English news articles, or somehow related to the English-speaking world. My hunch is that a native author would phrase this idea differently. Maybe something like "representar como malvado," "representar como si fuera diabólico," etc.

Endemoniar and endiablar seem to me to have a different meaning, that is, they mean to put a demon in someone, thereby angering them, rather than merely painting someone as a demon in order to harm their reputation, which is what demonize means.

updated FEB 3, 2009
posted by 00bacfba
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Try looking up: endemoniar and endiablar

updated FEB 3, 2009
posted by Sally
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Satanizar! Wow, that sounds diabolical indeed. Thanks for that. I'll check it out. smile

Vikingo said:

I've found demonizar in a few dictionaries, but the synonym satanizar has an entry in more of them.

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updated FEB 3, 2009
posted by mimi2
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I've found demonizar in a few dictionaries, but the synonym satanizar has an entry in more of them.

updated FEB 3, 2009
posted by Vikingo
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Yeah, I haven't seen demonizar in other dictionaries either. Perhaps because the English word is awkward in itself -- I don't even know if it's a "real" word even though I hear many people using it. The -ize is added to practically everything these days. ;>

Hmm...Thanks, though. Anybody else have a suggestion or comment on this? Is demonizar maybe more of Latin American usage'

updated FEB 3, 2009
posted by mimi2
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demonizar

On second look, this word in not in our nor the RAE's dictionary, so I think that this this web site might be mistaken.

updated FEB 3, 2009
posted by 0074b507
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