What is the significance of the @ symbol in Tod@s?

0
votes

I have been reading the following transcript between Sr. Ortiz and his students. Does anyone know why the @ symbol has been used in the word "tod@s"? I don't believe it to be a typo because I have seen it used more than just here.

  • Alumnos: Señor Ortiz, ¿y podemos terminar la clase 5 minutos antes?
  • Sr. Ortiz: Bueno, si queréis, podéis salir, pero sólo si traéis los ejercicios preparados.
  • Alumnos: De acuerdo, ¿y si queremos hacer una pausa para beber un poco de agua?
  • Sr. Ortiz: Pues ya sabéis que no me importa si tomáis bebidas no alcohólicas en clase.
  • Alumno 1: El año pasado tomábamos vino en la clase de Historia.
  • Alumnos: ¡Jajajajajajajaja!
  • Sr. Ortiz: De acuerdo, pero ésta no es la clase de historia, es la clase de Español.
  • Alumno 1: Claro, y como es la clase de Español pensamos hacer la fiesta.
  • Sr. Ortiz: Está bien, pero la fiesta en España se hace en la calle, y nosotros estamos en la facultad.
  • Alumnos: ¡Es verdad! ¡El 'profe? tiene razón!
  • Tod@s: ¡Jajajajajajaja!
11720 views
updated JUN 4, 2009
posted by tom5

17 Answers

1
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I still believe that it's just a writing style like a flourish on a signature. Do you always see it at the end like a "signoff"?

Actually it is the latest fashion in Spain to use the @ as to include both genders.

This is one of the most idiotic "politically correct" issues I can think of as the @ is of course no letter and just because it looks like the a+o...I mean rolleyes

However, lots of people think otherwise confused :

Resultados 11 - 20 de aproximadamente 2.640.000 de amig@s.

Did they really capitalize Español in this Spanish conversation? (Historia)

This smacks of having been written by an English student.

I did not even notice Quentin. This should be lower case.

Did you note the interesting use of the word facultad? In this context does it refer to the word faculty (of a university) Yes,it does. This use I think is quite exclusive here in Spain.

updated MAY 8, 2010
posted by 00494d19
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And if you wanted to be REALLY, REALLY correct you would always place the feminine before the masculine form to correspond to their real life status. Right, Heidita?

Let me tell you .... they need somebody like you in their party. cheese

Tell you the truth this had never occurred to me, that trying to be so "politically correct" they are still placing the masculine before the feminine...which shows what kind of a bunch of idiots they are! mad

On second thoughts, I think you would not fit into their midst at all wink

updated JUN 4, 2009
posted by 00494d19
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Now, if you want to be REALLY correct, you also need to place the adjective in the female form: querido/a amigo/a: and so throughout the leaflet.

And if you wanted to be REALLY, REALLY correct you would always place the feminine before the masculine form to correspond to their real life status. Right, Heidita'

updated JUN 4, 2009
posted by 0074b507
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Guys, thanks for the lively discussion. I appreciate the indepth analysis.Hi tom, I just wanted to add, that this "politically correct" thing is getting more and more ridiculous.

On meetings people say silly and boringly repetetive stuff like:

Queridos amigos y queridas amigas: Estamos aquí todos y todas para celebrar nuestro y nuestra....... rolleyes

Spanish has always included the feminine in the masculine and this feeling of "being left out" of some females is in my opinion simply ridiculous.

It gets many to make mistakes, like in a political propaganda distributed by defenders of this silly issue:

Querido amigo/amiga: .....

Now, if you want to be REALLY correct, you also need to place the adjective in the female form: querido/a amigo/a: and so throughout the leaflet.

updated JUN 4, 2009
posted by 00494d19
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Guys, thanks for the lively discussion. I appreciate the indepth analysis.

updated JUN 4, 2009
posted by tom5
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Did they really capitalize Español in this Spanish conversation? (Historia)

This smacks of having been written by an English student.

I did not even notice Quentin. This should be lower case.

...which shows that one better read the post before answering. jeje, I saw the symbol @ and saw nothing else.

updated JUN 3, 2009
posted by 00494d19
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Maybe I overcomplicated it: if "español" is the language and "history" refers to past events and its knowledge, they are both lower case. If you are talking about the name of two subjects called "Español" and "History", offered in a formal institution (especially if they have their department, and you get grades), they are upper case.

Check here: http://buscon.rae.es/dpdI/SrvltGUIBusDPD'origen=RAE&lema=mayusculas#424

updated JUN 3, 2009
posted by lazarus1907
0
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Maybe I overcomplicated it: if "español" is the language and "history" refers to past events and its knowledge, they are both lower case. If you are talking about the name of two subjects called "Español" and "History", offered in a formal institution (especially if they have their department, and you get grades), they are upper case.

Check here: http://buscon.rae.es/dpdI/SrvltGUIBusDPD'origen=RAE&lema=may'sculas#424

Thank you. I'll certainly save that link for reference. Very informative.

updated JUN 3, 2009
posted by 0074b507
0
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Regarding the word "español", in academic contexts, when it is the name of a typical subject to complete in a formal course, it is written with initial capital letter (la asignatura de Español), but when you are talking about learning Spanish (aprender español), the language, it is written in lower case.

I can't find a set of rules for Spanish capitalization regarding school subjects online (they all deal with the use of definite articles).

In English:
we capitalize the name of the subject if it is part of a title of the class. Math101, English 400, else we do not, unless the class is a language class. I'm going to math, science, history, etc. class.
I am doing my math homework.
I am doing my Spanish homework. I am going to English class.

English capitalization rules

If I understand what you are saying, Spanish does not make this exception for language classes. la clase de español.

in academic contexts, when it is the name of a typical subject to complete in a formal course, it is written with initial capital letter (la asignatura de Español)
I'm not sure that I understand what you are saying here.

  • Sr. Ortiz: De acuerdo, pero ésta no es la clase de historia, es la clase de Español

It would seem to me that the only difference in context between history and Spanish in this sentence is that one also happens to be the name of a language.

updated JUN 3, 2009
posted by 0074b507
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The real question is: how do you pronounce the '@'? 'oa'? 'ao'? Something else?

That's what I always ask people: how do you read this "arroba" anyway?

tod@s = todarrobas

updated JUN 3, 2009
posted by lazarus1907
0
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The real question is: how do you pronounce the '@'? 'oa'? 'ao'? Something else?

Unlike most politically correct nonsense, this one probably won't stick simply for practical reasons. Apart from looking ridiculous.

updated JUN 3, 2009
posted by 00719c95
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Thanks for the invaluable replies. It is amazing the amount of culture you learn along with the language.

I don't think you can really learn a language correctly without learning about its culture.

updated JUN 3, 2009
posted by lazarus1907
0
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Hopefully I have understood the comments correctly. The use of capital letters is correct. However, the use of @ in "tod@s" is not correct and there are succinct rules around gender in this area. Although it is some what fashionable, it is used in casual conversations.

Thanks for the invaluable replies. It is amazing the amount of culture you learn along with the language.

updated JUN 3, 2009
posted by tom5
0
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The use of @ is unnecessary, formally incorrect, but politically correct among uneducated people. The RAE and the other Academies of Spanish from 22 countries advise against its use, which is not tolerated in most schools (as far as I know) or universities. According to these linguists (who are responsible for our spelling and orthography, by the way):
**
Debe tenerse en cuenta que la arroba no es un signo lingüístico y, por ello, su uso en estos casos es inadmisible desde el punto de vista normativo; a esto se añade la imposibilidad de aplicar esta fórmula integradora en muchos casos sin dar lugar a graves inconsistencias, como ocurre en Marca de incorrección.Día del niñ@, donde la contracción del solo es válida para el masculino niño.**

Diccionario panhispánico de dudas ©2005
Real Academia Española © Todos los derechos reservados

Regarding the word "español", in academic contexts, when it is the name of a typical subject to complete in a formal course, it is written with initial capital letter (la asignatura de Español), but when you are talking about learning Spanish (aprender español), the language, it is written in lower case.

updated JUN 3, 2009
posted by lazarus1907
0
votes

Yes it seems to be at the end of the exchange. Interestingly it was written by a Spanish teacher from Spain, teaching foreign students in a university. Wait until I tell him!

Which shows.......this is even worse! A teacher! mad angry

updated JUN 3, 2009
posted by 00494d19