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Question for those in multicultural areas

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posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 08:08 PM
i live in a part of the world where English and Spanish are used interchangably. Even folks who aren't bilingual typically are more bilingual than they realize, and can tend to get along fine with someone else who isn't "bilingual" from the other language.

So i am sitting here listening to the wife do her usual "Sunday fence meetin'" with her mom. They both start speaking English, but as the tenor of the conversation starts to pick up, it quickly switches to a blend of English and Spanish. They speak English and Spanish interchangably. Typically, they follow English diction rules (adjective before noun, for example)...but English and spanish words fly around as if they were the same language.

Does this happen with other languages in other areas? If English is used simultaneously with another language, which languages rules are followed? Just interested in other experiences besides "Spanglish".

edit on 7/12/2015 by bigfatfurrytexan because: (no reason given)

posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 08:18 PM
Australia is very much a multicultural country and yet English is the only language.

Sure, if you only speak another language, then interpreter services are readily available, but by and large it is English or it is sign language.

Many people speak two languages, often the parents language at home but outside of the home, it is English.

I think your case is rather different. Originally, the spoken language in Texas was Spanish, until the Alamo and subsequent events played out and Texas was declared a sovereign State. I think that is why you have two languages spoken side by side.


posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 08:27 PM
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

There are parts of Chicago, where I live, where people speak Polish and English in the same manner as you have described. I don't know enough Polish to know which is the "dominant" language, but I am guessing that Polish is since it's the native language of many of these dual language speakers.

posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 08:29 PM
I know exactly what your talking about. Louisiana bayou country is slam full of this with the french language almost to the point that 'cajun' is a language all itself. Some of the eastern provinces of Canada are other good examples of this exchange. I'm sure there's a word or term for this phenomenon, I just can't think of it.
edit on 12-7-2015 by rexsblues because: (no reason given)

posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 08:38 PM
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

In Boston I think we have populations from everywhere and I've never known bilingual people when talking to people from their native land not to switch in and out of both languages.

posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 09:12 PM
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

You sure they aren't just switching it up when they are talking crap about you?

Seriously, though... I love that kind of stuff. Linguistic play is so much fun and I don't think there's any language I don't enjoy listening to when spoken with kindness, regardless of my understanding.

posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 09:17 PM
I grew up in OZ in a very multicultural school and area, I learned to swear in some asian languages and greek, Italian, Croatian and polish as a right of passage in school

I speak a European language at home. I love love love the multiculturalism of home, esp the food!!!!

posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 09:23 PM
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

Oh yeah big time!

Being from a bilingual family, French & English, we often switch in the middle of conversations or will just flat out speak French in public just because we can.

These days however having been so immersed in the English language it's becoming harder to do.

posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 09:31 PM
As an American who lived in France for quite a while, my daughter has always been bilingual and we both use French and English interchangeably, depending on where we are, who is nearby and what we want to say. I think this is fairly typical in bilingual families.

So to answer your question, I believe that it is less a regional phenomenon that a family one.

posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 11:13 PM
a reply to: Kali74

Say high to Frank Black and the Pixies for me.

posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 11:25 PM
My husband's parents/family speak Serbian/German/English. My hubby and his siblings speak Serbian/English.

It can be a combo mix of all 3 languages at their house. When they don't want the kids to understand they switch to German.

I love multiculturalism. I'm Native American/Mexican with a freckle of Irish. I was quite the novelty at the in-laws, not to mention I totally ruined my hubby's bloodline. LOL

My friend's mom spoke Italian with a little English thrown in. At first I didn't know what to think. She'd rattle off Italian and it sounded like she was mad/yelling. She was harmless, the stereotypical Italian mother fussing over/feeding us all the time. I got the best food.

I grew up in the melting pot just outside Chicago in Gary, IN.

posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 11:27 PM
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

I work in the largest Muslim city in the USA, and each day I travel in and out of completely non-English speaking neighborhoods. The women dress in full length black, the 5 daily calls to prayer blast from the store rooftops. In the local swimming/health clubs, they as well go into the pools full clothes. We as Caucasians and blacks have to shower 1st, they do not. They also have 3 locker rooms at my gym. One for men, one for women and one for "families of Middle Easterners".

My views culturally are changing each day. Almost, really ALL of them try very hard to communicate to me.Ive a lot of contacts speaking a form of "pig-latin" or "pigeon English" or some combination of single English words amidst their own Farsi or Arabic. We get along fine using one word back and forth from each.

Ive made some new friends...and picking up new things in both language, culture and perception of the Arabic, Chaldean, Saudi and Armenian societies.

I remember living in Miami Florida in the mid-70s..and even couldn't work at a convenience store or gas station if you couldn't speak Spanish.

Thanks, BFFTexan...Best, MS

posted on Jul, 13 2015 @ 04:02 AM
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

It is not at all uncommon to hear various languages interspersed with English, or English interspersed with other languages when one lives in an area which contains a decent mix of folks from various places around the world.

Down the road from me is a kebab shop, a gastronomic emporium of very good repute, run by a gentleman whose family hail from Turkey. Many of his suppliers are from or descended from Arabic speaking lands, so it is common for me to hear a conversation which is eighty percent Turkish, with the rest being a smattering of English phrases. I also hear the opposite displacement of vocabulary from the same source.

There are also a fair number of Polish, French, and German speakers knocking about the place, as well as the odd Spanish speaker, and our town even has a Tamil representation, and I have to assume that the same things happen with regard to linguistic blending in those areas too.

posted on Jul, 13 2015 @ 06:08 AM
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

Come to Quebec and you will experience pretty much the same between English and French. I also noted that "us German speakers" tend to blend our German with what ever language of the country we live in. Not so much noticeable to me with other linguistic groups. Filipino are known to converse in their own language but will quote direct a statement from the Boss for example or the doctor in English or what ever language of country they reside in.
The worst part for me personally was a stay in South America for a good 6 month and almost speaking Spanish exclusively. Then on my return to Quebec had a change of plane in NYC. Spent the night at a friends place just to be driven to the airport by a Haitian taxi driver who had his radio on a French station. Talk about a locked mouth and not knowing what language to pick.

posted on Jul, 13 2015 @ 06:19 AM
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

Live in NYC and my friends and I usually speak FRANGLAIS,basically a mix of Francais(french) and Anglais(English).And yes,it doesnt matter if the conversation started in french or english,it always end up being franglais....

posted on Jul, 13 2015 @ 06:26 AM
Growing up in Canada, I had friends who were Jewish, German, Ukrainan, Polish, East Indian, Pakistani, Swedish, Icelandic, Russian, French Canadian, Metis, Cree, Ojibway, Greek, Italian, Croatian, Nigerian, Chinese, Phillipino, Laos, Vietnamese... (I'm probably missing someone in there I'm sure).

The different flavours of languages getting tossed around all the time was a blast ! Not to mention all the awesome foods from everyone's cultures when you'd go over to a friends place for supper.

Just like zazz mentioned, I learned how to swear in pretty much every different language - there's not a person in the world who could tell me off in their own language that I wouldn't understand. My very first job as a teenager was working at a greek restaurant... my boss taught me all kinds of fun words in greek that I still use to this day. LOL.

Where I live now in rural Manitoba, it's steeped in mainly French people with a light splattering of everything else. So at the grocery store you'll hear people talking back and forth in mostly french/english dialogue.

My neighbour across the street is from Quebec and has a strong french accent - he'll speak to you in a mixture of both. My nickname for him is "that f'ing frenchman".

posted on Jul, 13 2015 @ 06:29 AM
It happens a lot with Italian in New Jersey since we have the highest population of citizens with Italian ancestry. We spoke both at home when I was younger and holiday dinners often took that turn as things got more 'interesting'.

posted on Jul, 13 2015 @ 09:47 AM
I'm with TrueBrit...
I hear Arabish (Arabic-English) everyday.

Although not from English speakers.

Englipino (English-Philipino) I've heard a lot of when I worked in the NHS.

Without wanting to generalise, but I'm going to, the Phillipino always seemed to be a guise for backbiting...
A few Phillipinos even admitted that others were talking about people when they did it.

posted on Jul, 13 2015 @ 09:55 AM
a reply to: CharlieSpeirs

I think that happens with everyone.

I was having lunch in Paterson, New Jersey which has a very high population of Arabic speakers when the guys behind the counter said something about us. They did not realize my buddy was Jordanian and he shut them down real quick.

They ended up sending us some free dessert, coffee and a hookah.

edit on 13-7-2015 by AugustusMasonicus because: networkdude has no beer

posted on Jul, 13 2015 @ 10:04 AM
a reply to: AugustusMasonicus


No doubt it happens across the board, I just meant in my personal experience.

Always good to have a few languages on deck for such a scenario.

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