Spanish Fever, 5, Gender Identity

The Year of The Spanish Fever. Post 5

Almost every Spanish noun has a gender. Adjectives and articles are expected to agree.

Things you might assume are masculine or feminine can fool you. Ironically the Spanish word for sausage is feminine but the word for buns is masculine. The language undergoes a sex change every twelve hours — day is a masculine word but night is feminine.

Some words seem wrong for their gender. “Mujer” (mu-hair) doesn’t sound especially feminine but it means woman. “Mujer” is also used as slang, as a substitute to refer to a wife. The more precise word for wife “esposa” also means handcuffs so it’s avoided in many circles.

The simple old American found that the Spanish language’s obsession with gender takes some getting used to. He was slow to catch on.

| LOST IN TRANSLATION | A man cannot be “embarazado.” It means pregnant.fingerprint4-only-final-40px

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