ENglish in spain

José   Monday, July 05, 2004, 14:54 GMT
As you may know there's plenty of words in english that are used in spanish, for example: iceberg, dvd, cd player,
in my country we TRY to pronounce them as a native will,
but when somebody from spain say iceberg ,for axample ,they pronounce it as if it was an spanish word,

Iceberg : /i:seber/

Boogieman   Tuesday, July 06, 2004, 05:35 GMT
I've heard spaniards talking about "Gameeobe"

=game over
mjd   Tuesday, July 06, 2004, 06:31 GMT

It's difficult to pronounce foreign words with the right accent unless one has studied the language and its pronunciation. It's just easier to say these words using the pronunciation of one's native tongue.
Jordi   Tuesday, July 06, 2004, 07:07 GMT
According to European Spanish usage, at least, it isn't correct to pronounce foreign words with a foreign pronunciation even if you master that foreign language. Although I'm fully bilingual in Spanish and English I would never dream in doing so. I remember, when I first arrived in Spain (from Australia) as a teenager, how everybody around me would laugh their heads off when they heard an English pronunciation for an anglicism. I learnt the lesson the easy way and decided it wasn't necessary for everybody to know I spoke English. The same way I make sure my pronunciation of Spanish words isn't really "Spanish" when I speak English. In Spain it would be considered highly pedantic to do so and in English-speaking countries people would probably think I've got "ethnic roots". :)LOL. Therefore, in Spain you are expected to assimilate foreign words to Spanish phonetics. I believe that in Italian one is allowed to pronounce foreign words with a more foreign pronunciation and that would be considered a sign of "distinction" or "education".
There's an urban legend, or rather a Campus legend, going around in Spain about a celebrated uniersity professor who was giving a conference in Spanish about Shâ-kés-pé-à-ré (stress on the "a", please and 5 syllables, if you may). Since his students laughed at his overly precise Spanish pronunciation of "Shakespeare" he decided to carry on in English to see if they could really follow him up. By the, way would you pronounce "Cervantes" (Cerr-vàn-tés) a really Spanish way in such a situation? The answer is no because as a conference interpreter I've found out all the funny ways English-speaking peoples pronounce foreign names.
European Spanish, at least, tends to adapt and to refuse a lot more than French or Italian. There are, of course, anglicisms in contemporary Spanish but far less than in French and Italian (no Spaniard would ever consider saying "weekend" to his mother as the French do and e-mail is definitely a "correo electrónico".) In Spain we say "ordenador" whilst South American Spanish prefers "computadora". One should ask himself if that isn't a sign of strength and self-pride. After all, isn't that the way English goes through life?
nic   Tuesday, July 06, 2004, 13:45 GMT
We do the same in french, we use english words with a french accent. It's not a question of rules if we must or must not. It's just a question of reflex. For example, how do you want someone of 60 years old to propunce an english word with an english accent.

It's impossible to pronouce a word in english accent with other words with french accent, it's like to try to change you type of writing, it will work 1, 2 minutes but 5 minutes later.....
Mi5 Mick   Tuesday, July 06, 2004, 13:57 GMT
I get the feeling it's the same in most European countries. English words are pronounced with a French accent in France, Italian in Italy, Greek in Greece, etc. However in the Americas, the US or Canadian pronunciation is favoured for English words. In French Quebec, English words are pronounced by Francophones as they would be in English. I suspect it's the same in many Latin American countries.
nic   Tuesday, July 06, 2004, 14:18 GMT
Totally agree, it's natural i guess
Mi5 Mick   Tuesday, July 06, 2004, 14:37 GMT
Well many Quebecois speak English so well with a Canadian accent. Sometimes you can't tell that are in fact Francophones.
Jose   Tuesday, July 06, 2004, 15:01 GMT

It's difficult to pronounce foreign words with the right accent unless one has studied the language and its pronunciation. It's just easier to say these words using the pronunciation of one's native tongue.

I never said that i'm my country we pronounce the english words with the right accent, but what we do is to say the words as close as we can to the right pronounciation,

for example , an american would be able to understand somebody when they say Penthouse or iceberg cuz everobosy has , at least, an idea of how to say those words, maybe not EXACTLY as an american or english, but alike.

On the other hand people from spain pronounce it totally different ,

I'm not saying that one way is right and one is wrong i just wanted to know the reason why,

In this country , if one pronounce backstreet boys as /bahk stret boys/
people is going to laugh at your face.
Damian   Tuesday, July 06, 2004, 16:00 GMT
Interesting topic....pronouning foreign words when speaking English.

The BBC has a special department that advises announcers and other BBC employees who broadcast on the radio (I believe on BBC-TV also) how to pronounce any foreign word. They are experts in this department and can advise on ANY word from ANY language that exists apparently. So most announcers when they use a foreign word or name in the course of their discussion or announcement or news bulletin) are "supposed" to pronounce it as close as possible to the way a native speaker would say it. French is quite easy for them as far as it sounds to me.

But most people in ordinary day to day conversations would pronounce foreign words in an anglicised way. I like chocolate eclairs [icl'e..(r)z] I keep a rendezvous ['rondeivu:]
Jordi   Tuesday, July 06, 2004, 16:03 GMT
Could you please tell us which Spanish speaking country you're from? It would be interesting to know if pronouncing English words in Spanish in an approximate English fashion is usual in all South American countries. I think the issue is also sociologic.
Boogieman   Wednesday, July 07, 2004, 04:23 GMT
On the topic of foreign words in English its a little bit of a problem in my country (New Zealand).

We have two official languages (English and Maori) with English being pretty much the only spoken language with quite a few Maori words thrown in.

The trouble is Maori sounds quite different to English, and when you go to use a Maori word you can just anglicise it (sounds better but risks the wrath of the PC Police) or you can jump to Maori sounds but it just sounds awkward and a little pretentious. Its a no win situation.

A good example is the word "Maori" itself. Most people will just say something like "Mel-ri" or "Marry" but the correct pronounciation is almost impossible to fit into an English sentence "MAH-OW-REE" (sounds a little like 'Mouldy').