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Ponerse vs. Volverse + adjective meaning "to become"

 

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  #21  
Old June 01, 2010, 10:28 AM
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Lou Ann:

What's so hard to understand from the following phrase "I went crazy looking for my keys"

Is that permanent?

Should I have said instead : I lost my intelligence when I realized I had lost/misplaced my keys?

What about: I am not a math teacher if I keep losing my keys.

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  #22  
Old June 01, 2010, 10:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
I am having a somewhat difficult time distinguishing between when to use "ponerse + adjective" vs. "volverse + adjective" for "to become".

The question has been asked here at Tomisimo previously, but always in Spanish, and I can't really follow the question or answers. I have also been trying to figure this out with RAE, etc., and am still not finding it. Would it be possible to explain to me in English....?

My workbook says that "ponerse + adjective" expresses a change of an emotional or physical nature, and that "volverse + adjective" expresses an involuntary or sudden change.

But in the following sentences, I don't understand why it's the one and not the other:
- Marla se vuelve muda cuando le hablo de su novio. (Is that not a change of an emotional nature? I thought it would be "se pone"...)
- Cuando pierdo mis llaves me vuelvo loco. (This was actually a true/false question, so it makes me wonder if "loco" is not used in the same two senses we use it in English, literally crazy vs. figuratively crazy... Either way, it wouldn't be a sudden change, right? Losing one's keys would make one figuratively become crazy ... to find them.)
- La gente se vuelve loca cuando hay fiesta. (Same as the previous one.)
- Me pongo muy nerviosa cuando gritas. (I thought because this is something that happens suddenly it would be volverse...)

What, exactly, is the difference between the use of ponerse and volverse when they mean "to become"? This is quite confusing....
Having read the rest of this thread, let's see if I can make head or tail of this according to the definitions given in your book:
Marla se vuelve muda cuando le hablo de su novio = volver due to sudden change. My understanding is that this person does not talk about her boyfriend - she becomes mute when he is referred to. I don't see an emotional change just a behavioural change.

Cuando pierdo mis llaves me vuelvo loco = volver due to sudden change. The trigger to my madness is losing my keys - therefore sudden change to normal behaviour.

La gente se vuelve loca cuando hay fiesta = change in behaviour therefore same as above.

Me pongo muy nerviosa cuando gritas. = change in emotions/physical not behaviour therefore "ponerse"

Hope that helps

Other examples:
Me pongo roja cuando me besa
Me vuelvo ciega con la luz intensa. (literal sudden change)
Me pongo ciega de helado cuando estoy deprimida. (figurative change)
Cuando le mando hacer algo, mi hijo de 5 años se vuelve sordo.
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...sé amable contigo mismo. Eres una criatura de este universo al igual que los árboles y las estrellas; tienes derecho a estar aquí.
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  #23  
Old June 01, 2010, 11:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ambarina View Post
Marla se vuelve muda cuando le hablo de su novio = volver due to sudden change. My understanding is that this person does not talk about her boyfriend - she becomes mute when he is referred to. I don't see an emotional change just a behavioural change.

Cuando pierdo mis llaves me vuelvo loco = volver due to sudden change. The trigger to my madness is losing my keys - therefore sudden change to normal behaviour.
OK, I can understand your other examples, but the more I think about this, the less I understand it. In the first one above, the reaction is a behavioural, although emotionally triggered. In the second one, the reaction is an emotional change, or not? Both with volverse.
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  #24  
Old June 01, 2010, 01:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandon View Post
I'm back again (hopefully without sounding mudo. )

I think I understand the logic so maybe I can translate it in a different way.

Categorize your adjectives whether they would USUALLY be permanent or short-lived.

mudo - permanent - the state of being mute - not much of a cure
loco - permanent - the state of being crazy - again, not much of a cure
nervioso - temporary - the state of being nervous - based on events
perdido - temporary - the state of being lost - can find way

Now, despite the context of the sentence, use the permanent adjectives with volverse and the temporary with ponerse, and let your sentence's context dictate whether it is actually permanent.

Cuándo trato de aprender ciencia, me vulevo loco. - It is clear I'm not actually going crazy, but I use volverse because in serious context, it would be a permanent transformation. To me, it is similar to exaggeration. Obviously science class isn't going to drive me legit crazy, so I'm really just exaggerating.
THAT is the closest I've seen to something that helps me understand. Basically, then, you're saying that the "volverse" vs. "ponerse" is linked to the adjective, not to the context? THAT makes sense!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by chileno View Post
Lou Ann:

What's so hard to understand from the following phrase "I went crazy looking for my keys"

Is that permanent? <--No, which is why I thought it should be ponerse...

Should I have said instead : I lost my intelligence when I realized I had lost/misplaced my keys?

What about: I am not a math teacher if I keep losing my keys.
I'm sorry if I don't understand the things you think I ought to...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ambarina View Post
Having read the rest of this thread, let's see if I can make head or tail of this according to the definitions given in your book:
Marla se vuelve muda cuando le hablo de su novio = volver due to sudden change. My understanding is that this person does not talk about her boyfriend - she becomes mute when he is referred to. I don't see an emotional change just a behavioural change.

Cuando pierdo mis llaves me vuelvo loco = volver due to sudden change. The trigger to my madness is losing my keys - therefore sudden change to normal behaviour.

La gente se vuelve loca cuando hay fiesta = change in behaviour therefore same as above.

Me pongo muy nerviosa cuando gritas. = change in emotions/physical not behaviour therefore "ponerse"

Hope that helps

Other examples:
Me pongo roja cuando me besa
Me vuelvo ciega con la luz intensa. (literal sudden change)
Me pongo ciega de helado cuando estoy deprimida. (figurative change)
Cuando le mando hacer algo, mi hijo de 5 años se vuelve sordo.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Perikles View Post
OK, I can understand your other examples, but the more I think about this, the less I understand it. In the first one above, the reaction is a behavioural, although emotionally triggered. In the second one, the reaction is an emotional change, or not? Both with volverse.
I'm with Perikles here ... "mudo" is a change in behavior, but in the losing keys example, I see "loco" as a change in mood....

Also, I don't see "me pongo muy nerviosa cuando gritas" as any LESS sudden of a change in emotion than the previous examples, yet with the use of a different verb....

Thank you EVERYONE for attempting to help get this through my thick head...........
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Last edited by laepelba; June 01, 2010 at 03:32 PM. Reason: Sheesh - I'm such a flake sometimes....
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  #25  
Old June 01, 2010, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
THAT is the closest I've seen to something that helps me understand. Basically, then, you're saying that the "volverse" vs. "ponerse" is linked to the verb, not to the context? THAT makes sense!!

Except of course you mean the verb is linked the adjective.
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  #26  
Old June 01, 2010, 03:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandon View Post
Except of course you mean the verb is linked the adjective.
Yes, DOH! I'll change that right now. Sheesh! (Me, sheesh!)
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