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  • Writer's picturemonicademartin

Translation and Diatopic Variation

I am reading a post on Facebook where someone requested as many options as possible on how to translate "man", "dude", "brother", "buddy" into Spanish.

The diatopic (geographical) variation is seriously mind-blowing:

Spain: tío, colega, chaval, macho, tronco (this last one is apparently going out of fashion, sooo eighties);

Peru: varón, compadre, hermano, causa;

Guatemala: mano, vos, cuate, amigo, estimado, maje, chavo, chato, compa, rey, campeón;

Mexico: bato, amigo, compa, perro, guey, cabrón, bro, wey o güey;

Ecuador: pana, broder, man, compadre, tipo, ñaño;

Argentina: loco, bro, hermano, flaco, chabon, boludo;

Chile: hombre, chato, hermano, amigo, tipo, compadre;

Cuba: socio, asere, monina cumbila, yunta, amigo, hermano mi sangre.

And just to finish it off, some local options by my Malaga-based teenage son: broder, Jay/Jai and Jawa (here the diastratic, i.e. social group, variation comes into place).

Are you from a different Spanish speaking country?

Can you think of any other expressions?

Language is just amazing.

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