Latin American Spanish

Latin American Spanish (beginners) will run on Wednesday evenings, 6-8pm, at Praxis Community Projects in Bethnal Green! Starting on Wednesday 23rd January 2019.

You can register online here, or email babelsblessing@gmail.com if you have any questions.

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Why study Latin American Spanish? It’s often said that Spanish is the second most common first language in the world, but did you know that the vast majority of first language Spanish speakers actually come from the Americas? (Around 500 million, compared to 47 million in Spain). Nowadays, it’s now common to find Latin Americans not just in South America, but also in the US, across Europe and even in China. Here in London, there are large Latin American communities in Elephant and Castle, Brixton, Seven Sisters and elsewhere. This means that Latin American Spanish, with its soft, clear pronunciation, respectful register and melodic intonation, is a truly global language.

How are we going to teach? Classes will be participatory, with plenty of opportunities to speak and practice Spanish in meaningful contexts. We will use online resources such as Google Classroom and Youtube in between classes to do reading research, prepare, catch up on missed sessions and work on our speaking. We will also discuss Spanish language culture, studying lyrics from salsa, cumbia and rock latino, listening to film clips, breathing in the aromas of the region’s varied cuisine, and sharing tales and anecdotes from across the vast Spanish speaking world. We will also take a deep breath and dive into the complex, beguiling and uneven world of Latin American politics and society, with reference to countries as diverse as Mexico, Venezuela, Cuba, Colombia, Ecuador, and others. Don’t worry, we won’t forget Spain though: we will also study the country’s own legacy, looking at the rich history of flamenco, of its alternative theatre, while also touching on la movida: the alternative history of Spain, looking at anarchists in the Civil War, the cinema of Pedro Almodóvar, and punk rock rebels from the Basque Country.

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