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South American Dialects - easiest for learners?

 

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  #11  
Old August 31, 2013, 01:25 PM
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¡Hola a todos mis nuevos amigos!

Wow, this is a very friendly and helpful forum! :-) Thank you all so much for giving your views, they are most helpful. A few of you asked me questions so to reply:

Liquinn: Spain would be wonderful too, but I have always wanted to experience South America. It is the only continent (apart from Antarctica) that I have never been to and I have actually been 'saving' it until I had the chance to take a mid-career break for a year. I want to base myself out of one city where I can take lessons but also to travel around the whole continent once my Spanish is serviceable. The question is, where to base?

Poli: I've heard of the Argentinian / Uruguayan 'vos' issue although I have not experienced it. I'm assuming that this is not such an issue as to rule either country off my list, but I will take it into account as best as I can! Thank you for your comment on Peruvian accents, others have said this too.

Villa: Thank you for your very detailed and informative replies! I should look at Ecuador too, I guess. I didn't include it in my original shortlist because I am living and working in a non-Hispanic equatorial country at the moment (Brunei) and I am missing the changes in season - it's permanently summer here! This might suit some, but I prefer a climate where you can tell what season it is :-) That's why I was looking a little further south. But I will check out Ecuador too, so thanks again for the recommendation.

Saludos,

Withnail
Around ‘Rio de la Plata’ in Buenos Aires, Argentina and Uruguay, Spanish language is characterized by some different grammar, and a vocabulary and pronunciation heavily influenced by the Italian language from Italian immigrants who settled the zone in XIXth and early XXth centuries. 3/4 of the population of Buenos Aire the capital of Argentina are of Italian origin and 1/2 of the people from Uruguay and Argentina are of Italian origin. It's just common sense that they speak Spanish with an Itaian accent. This is something known to all native speakers of Spanish from the 21 Spanish speaking countries that have ever heard somebody from Argentina and Uruguay speak Spanish. Most people confuse people from Argentina and Uruguay because they sound very similar when they speak. Both with that Italian accent.
(Sí, en Argentina fuera de la zona rioplatense quizás hablen español con menos acento italiano.)

Argentina, Chile and Uruguay : South America

Last edited by AngelicaDeAlquezar; August 31, 2013 at 07:14 PM. Reason: Removed superfluous information around the link.
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  #12  
Old March 11, 2014, 08:05 PM
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Hola a todos,

I thought that I should update this post. I am now in Cusco, Peru and enrolled in Spanish classes for 20 hrs/week. Thank you to everyone who passed on their advice to me regarding clear Spanish in different Latin American countries. To anyone pondering the same question that I originally posted: Cusco is a very good choice for learning Spanish. The people here speak very clearly, quite slowly and are very friendly, patient and tolerant of all of the mistakes that I make. Spanish schools are plentiful and good-quality lessons are inexpensive. Also, it's an amazing place to live with lots of history and culture. I will continue my travels in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile and maybe other Latin American countries later this year, but for the time being this is a great base to learn Spanish in.

Un saludo,

Withnail.
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  #13  
Old March 15, 2014, 12:50 PM
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I have been watching a series on BBC 4 called "Lost Kingdoms of Latin America" (truly fascinating, very informative) and the interviews with the Peruvians were surprising, such elegant cultured Spanish. Much better than the dreadful Spanish you hear in southern Spain!

I have to say I've seen one or two Argentine films and find their Spanish hard to follow; to my ears it has the lilt of Brazilian Portuguese.

I love the film "Bonbon el Perro" a great favourite of mine!
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Old March 16, 2014, 05:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Sancho Panther View Post
I have been watching a series on BBC 4 called "Lost Kingdoms of Latin America" (truly fascinating, very informative) and the interviews with the Peruvians were surprising, such elegant cultured Spanish. Much better than the dreadful Spanish you hear in southern Spain!

I have to say I've seen one or two Argentine films and find their Spanish hard to follow; to my ears it has the lilt of Brazilian Portuguese.

I love the film "Bonbon el Perro" a great favourite of mine!
I like the Peruvian Spanish too, especially from Lima. Some Colombian accents also sound very pleasing to the ear.
I don't know if it's just because of my unpracticed ear, but the peninsular Spanish gives me the impression as if they mumble a lot or talk too fast.
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Old March 18, 2014, 10:49 AM
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Correction - "Lost Kingdoms of South America"!
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  #16  
Old March 19, 2014, 01:12 PM
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A propósito, la cocina peruana es superior y color morado predomina
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Old March 25, 2014, 04:24 PM
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Conocí a un hombre de Perú, el otro día. Él estaba ayudando a mis vecinos moverse
y tenía un tiempo de descanso. Empezamos una conversación que se prolongó durante
horas. Hablamos en español porque su inglés era limitado y de todas maneras me gusta
hablar en español. Podía entenderlo perfectamente bien, sin embargo mis amigos
ecuatorianos tienen un acento más claro en mi opinión. De cualquier forma este hombre
Peruivian me decía que en el Perú se pueden encontrar más de 3.800 variedades de papas.
Se diferencian en tamaño, forma, color, pulpa, textura y sabor, pero todos tienen su lugar
en la cocina peruana.

Last edited by Villa; March 25, 2014 at 04:26 PM.
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  #18  
Old March 26, 2014, 07:46 AM
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Yo también encuentro muy claro el español que se habla en Ecuador. En Ecuavisión, television ecuatoriana, entiendo todo pero cuando pongo Caracol, un canal colombiano, entiendo menos. Por mi parte, alguien que aprendió español como un segundo idioma, en general el español que se habla en Ecuador, Perú y hasta México es más claro que lo que oigo en otros paises
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Old January 17, 2015, 07:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Withnail View Post
Hola a todos,

I thought that I should update this post. I am now in Cusco, Peru and enrolled in Spanish classes for 20 hrs/week. Thank you to everyone who passed on their advice to me regarding clear Spanish in different Latin American countries. To anyone pondering the same question that I originally posted: Cusco is a very good choice for learning Spanish. The people here speak very clearly, quite slowly and are very friendly, patient and tolerant of all of the mistakes that I make. Spanish schools are plentiful and good-quality lessons are inexpensive. Also, it's an amazing place to live with lots of history and culture. I will continue my travels in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile and maybe other Latin American countries later this year, but for the time being this is a great base to learn Spanish in.

Un saludo,

Withnail.
Hola Withnail!

Can you update your post? Have you passed by Buenos Aires?

Regards,
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  #20  
Old January 19, 2015, 06:12 AM
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Hola Ookami!

Yes, I was lucky enough to travel in Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile and finally Argentina! Buenos Aires was the last place that I visited, in November 2014, before returning home to the UK nearly two months ago. I loved all of these countries and each has some special things about it. Here are my views on the clarity of the Spanish, from the point of view of an intermediate level Spanish student:

In general, I found that the individual that I was speaking to was more important to my understanding than the country that I was in. Often the better educated, professional people were easier to understand than workers and country people. Sometimes I could go on a tour of, say, a museum with a tour conducted in Spanish aimed at local people. Because the tour guide spoke clearly, I could understand 90% of the tour. Then I might go outside on the street and try to buy something in a market, and struggle to understand even a very basic conversation with the stall holder! For me, the clarity of the individual was much more important than the local dialect.

But having said that: some places were easier to understand than others. The mountains of Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador and Colombia had probably the easiest dialects for me - the people generally spoke clearly and slowly, although in the more remote villages, where other languages like Quechua are still spoken, the Spanish was often very difficult to understand. Lima was harder for me than Cusco. One of the hardest dialects of all my travels was on the north coast of Colombia - I think that they call the dialect <<costeño>> and I understood very little there (although we met some Colombians from Bogotá there and THEY didn't understand much either, so I did not feel too bad!).

In Chile, the people spoke more quickly and with less clarity, but I could still understand most of what was said. Argentina I found very difficult at first, but I got used to it after a while. As you know, Argentines speak quite quickly, but what was harder for me at first was the <<zh>> sound, rather than the <<yy> sound, for <<ll>>. To the English ear, it sounds a bit like Russian rather than Spanish! Once I got used to this it was easier. The rhythm of the speech in Argentina was quite different to what I was used to but again I got used to it. I had to relearn a few common words (manteca not mantequilla, frutilla not fresa etc). The <<voseo>> did not bother me much as I had read about it and just used <<usted>> when I was talking. I found that Cordobá had the hardest accent for me to understand of those that I encountered in Argentina. In Patagonia the language was often easier. Buenos Aires I found okay, but then I had been in Argentina for several weeks when I arrived there so was used to it by then.

One thing that I found interesting was that when I crossed the border from Chile to Argentina in Tierra del Fuego, the dialect changed immediately. I would have expected all Patagonians to speak similarly, whichever side of the border they were on, but actually there was a very noticeable difference.

Everything above relates to my listening ability. When I spoke in my intermediate-level Spanish, I think that I was understood equally well / badly in all of these countries.

Saludos,

Scott
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