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  • ARGENTINEAN SPANISH

    Jive, Porteño Style

    When I arrived in Buenos Aires a couple of years back, I got off the plane thinking that my experience in other Spanish speaking countries and my rudimentary high school classes would allow me to get by, and they did. But it is one thing to get by and quite another to play truco like a native. This came home to me on my first visit to the market to buy some basics for the apartment. My shopping list, with the words I used to order them:

    strawberries – fresas
    pineapple – piña
    butter – mantequilla
    bananas – plátanos

    mercadoInstead of a basket full of tasty fruits, all I received was a smirk from the greengrocer; all of these words might work just fine in Mexico City or Havana, but here the Argentines pride themselves on being just a little bit different from the rest of the Spanish-speaking world.
    Now my shopping basket is full of:
    strawberries – frutillas
    pineapple – ananá
    butter – manteca
    bananas – bananas (that one was easy!)

    So as you get ready to take a big bite of Argentine culture, here are some a basics on how to talk like a porteño:

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  • Filed under: Argentine Culture, Learning Spanish - Testimonials
  • Carnival in South America

    Carnival: comes from the Italian word of carne vale and means something in the lines of “farewell to meat” which was not eaten during Lent.

    The tradition of Carnaval was brought by the Europeans who celebrated this feast during late winter just before the forty day Lent period of fasting and prayer began. According to ethnologists it has elements of old celebrations and cultures and it is said it gave the opportunity to rural societies, dominated by Christianity, to rebel against the sexual repression and formality opposed on them.

    Nowadays it has practically nothing to do anymore with rebellion. However it is the perfect opportunity for the people to let go of all the stress and just have a great time!! Carnaval is celebrated in many different ways all through South-America.

    The celebrations in Bolivia partially do have a religious background even today. In the city of Oruro Carnaval is celebrated most grandly and they always begin with a special dance called the Devil dance also known as the diablada. This dance is based on the ceremony in which they give thanks to the Pachamama, mother earth. It commemorates the eternal clash between good and evil and it was allowed by the early catholic priest to keep the natives quiet during the conversion by the Catholic Church.

    Carnaval Oruro

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  • Filed under: Curiosities on Latin American
  • The cultural window of Cusco is edited by the management of the Institutional Image department of the INC in Cusco, where all the cultural activities are published during the year 2009.

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  • Filed under: Peruvian Culture & History