Hello, welcome to my home, mi casa es tu casa!

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Flag of United States  , Texas
Sunday, April 11, 2010

Entry #5: Hello, Welcome to my home, mi casa es tu casa!

Élément analysé: Élément linguistique: The influence of the Spanish idiom on the English language in Texas
Description: Undoubtedly, the daily life in The lone star state reflects the strong influence and the contributions of the rich, spicy Mexican culture. Effectively, savouring crispy tacos and burritos for breakfast represents a Mexican-influenced habit well anchored in the mind of the Texans. Besides, the hundred  of Tex-Mex restaurants scattered around the state testify of the integration of some Mexican habit  into the culture of the country of cowboys.  Furthermore, walking down the crowded streets in San Antonio, surrounded of Spanish speakers,  I was very amazed when I realized that this aspect was even more important than I could imagine.  Literally, I sometimes had the impression that I was  immersed in a south-America country, in a totally different culture and I could not believe it.  The Hispanic population seems to be everywhere in Texas and the Caucasian population is sometimes a minority . It was really different from what we experience in Quebec city because we are not used to hear a different language than French spoken by a considerable part of the population.    Thus, in Texas and especially in San Antonio or El Paso, food habits, restaurants, the names of the streets,  EVERYTHING is influenced by the Mexican culture . To my great surprise, the vocabulary and the English language itself are not exceptions! Actually, I was really surprised when Judy told me «Mi casa es tu casa» when I arrived the first day in Texas ! I first thought she maybe speaking Spanish as a foreign language but that was not the case. She mentioned me they use Spanish words, sentences, expressions really often and the English they speak is really influenced by the Spanish language.

Analyse/Constat: Like I mentioned previously, I was really surprised to hear that the vocabulary, the name of the streets , the name of some important places, bridges and so on are directly influenced by Spanish. But when we think about it, that's pretty logic because in some parts of the state, more than 50% of the population speak Spanish. My host family sometimes use Spanish words to designate things. For instance, they can say La luna instead of The moon. When they want to talk about food, they use typical Spanish words like Tortilla or Burritos but they don't pronounce the words like English speakers, they would pronounce it like real Mexicans would do. Besides, in Texas, there is no law to protect the English language. Posters on stores are sometimes written only in Spanish and nobody seems to complain about that.  I thought I lot about that and I am really ambivalent . I guess, in Quebec, people in general would never accept a situation like that. With the law 101, the government and some activists are really interested in preserving a * pure * French language but it is probably a good thing because we would probably lose our French language if people would start integrate words from another language. On the other hand,  I think that if our language was influenced by another idiom, it would probably contributes to create a richer vocabulary. So, I can conclude that I am really ambivalent about that but it’s surely an important issue .

Photo: On this photo, you can see a Mexican restaurant in San Antonio. It is the Don Pedro. We can easily notice that everything on the sign is written in Spanish. I believe that it is the best example to understand the importance of the Spanish language in an English country.
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Comments

sarah_inkman
sarah_inkman on

You're making me hungry Cathy, lol!! Sarah

fernandeze
fernandeze on

We did not talk much about the Mexican influence in the southern states in class, I can see that you have discovered it by yourself!

Very interesting subject Cathy! Take care!
Enrique Fernandez

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