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maricón vs. faggot

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Vocabulary / Vocabulario Español-Inglés' started by Junot, Apr 8, 2008.

  1. Junot New Member

    English
    A non-Spanish speaking friend says that maricón in Spanish is equivalent to faggot in English.
    I don't believe it carries the same level of intensity. I'd appreciate comments.
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2014
  2. Miguel Antonio Senior Member

    Galicia
    Galego (Rías Baixas)
    I suppose it all depends on the context. Both terms are derogatory especially if the intention of the speaker is such.
    How much harm is intended is something not easy to quantify, even to qualify. :(
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2014
  3. Caliban

    Caliban Senior Member

    Perú
    Español
    In Peru we use the word maricón all the time. It is true it refers to a homosexual man but it is not as strong as the word faggot, not at all.
    Friends call other friends "maricón" for no reason.
    It might be closer to "sissy" than to "faggot", which I believe it's a more serious, stronger and more hurtful word than maricón.
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2014
  4. alexacohen

    alexacohen Senior Member

    Santiago de Compostela
    Spanish. Spain
    Hola, Miguel Antonio, cuánto tiempo.

    The level of intensity would depend on the pronunciation and the context.
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2014
  5. Junot New Member

    English
    Three great replies. Are there other usages for gay men? For example, if you are referring to a friend.
     
  6. Caliban

    Caliban Senior Member

    Perú
    Español
    In Peru: Cabro (very common).
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2014
  7. Translator99 Senior Member

    South America - Spanish
    I thought "cabro" was a a way to refer to children...

    As for words to refer to gay men: loca, mariposo, voltiado, manflora, marica, reina, mariquita, maricón, mujeril, cacorro, muñeco, acaponado, pisaverde, ninfo, barbilindo, barbilucio, cocinilla, amujerado, ahembrado, adamado, enerve, fileno, sarasa, bujarrón, puto, invertido, fileno, ninfo, bardaje, desviado, garzón, desviado, yegua, pato.
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2014
  8. Junot New Member

    English
    I got a reply to an email sent earlier to a Mexican friend in Washington, D.C. who says that "gay" is widely used in Mexico.
    He says that to him "maricón" is more like saying "queen" in English. Comments?
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2014
  9. Caliban

    Caliban Senior Member

    Perú
    Español
    Cabro in Peru doesn't refer to children :). It means "gay", but people use it all the time, like in English you would say "don't be a wuss or don't chicken out" : "no seas cabro".
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2014
  10. aurilla Senior Member

    Puerto Rico
    Am Eng/PR Spanish
    In Puerto Rico, "pato" would be the equivalent of "faggot", while "maricón" is similar to "gay" / "homosexual". However, depending on the context, situación and tone used, "maricón" can be just as offensive as "pato".
     
  11. Translator99 Senior Member

    South America - Spanish
    Personally, I would never use this word to refer to a friend, nor would I like to have my friends using this word when talking to me. Maybe I am getting older.
     
  12. Junot New Member

    English


    Thanks for your comment. I do think that the word is sometimes used without rancor or negative intentions; however, I also believe it best for straight people to avoid using it at all. I would, however, most likely not consider its use to automatically brand the user a homophobe. Still, there doesn't seem to be a widely accepted Spanish word equivalent to gay.
     
  13. scotu Senior Member

    Paradise: LaX.Nay.Mex.
    Chicago English
    The word "gay" is understood and used throughout the Spanish speaking world with the same meaning as in English.
     
  14. Moritzchen Senior Member

    Los Angeles, CA
    Spanish, USA
    Maricón can be sissy.
    Faggot would be puto.
     
  15. fsabroso

    fsabroso Moderadiólogo

    South Texas
    Perú / Castellano
    That is the use of "cabro" in Peru.

    Yes, you are right; but, that use is in Chile, they call "cabro(a)" to young boys and girls.

    You know "regionalismos".
     
  16. Miguel Antonio Senior Member

    Galicia
    Galego (Rías Baixas)
    In Spain, sissy would be mariquita, referring to a younger gay male person. Puto is hardly used, and to refer to a male prostitute the word used is chapero. When someone calls someone else maricón de mierda or hijo de puta, they are not referring at all to the other person's sexual orientation nor to whatever their mother does for a living, they mean to call them nasty using very rude language (I apologise for using it myself here).

    Bearing in mind that same-sex sexual relations between consenting adults carry the death penalty in some countries of the world, the use of any names to describe homosexuals in a derogatory way in countries where there is freedom to live one's own sexual life shall depend on the context and the intonation, as Alexa referred, and is a minor expression of homophobia whose utmost instance is that where the law itself provides that there are no gay persons at all, as they live in hiding, in exile, or die for it.
     
  17. yayu Senior Member

    Between Soria and New York
    Madrid, spanish
    I think that gay people, in Spain, like to use the term "gay" as if it were spanish. Actually the most known Organization is called "Federación de Gays y Lesbianas"
    I guess this is because all other terms have despective connotations and this is a "new one" and now it's the more neutral term in my opinion
     
  18. Junot New Member

    English
    I didn't know I'd spark a colloquy on Spanish words for "gay," but it is most interesting to discover that about the only "polite" term among Spanish speakers is the English word "gay." It's also fascinating to read Translator99's long list of Spanish euphemisms that apply to gays. Thanks to everyone who has commented on this thread.
     
  19. Antpax

    Antpax Ex-Moderador

    Madrid
    Spanish Spain
    Hi Junot,

    Be careful, because the term in the list Translator99 provided are not euphemisms but derogative names. It is true, as far as I know the polite term, meaning not derogative, are "gay", "homosexual" or "lesbiana" (for women).

    Cheers.

    Ant
     
  20. verence

    verence Senior Member

    Madrid (Spain)
    Spain (Spanish)
    Yes, "gay" is the polite word here.

    But I have some gay friends, and they colloquially refer to each other using the words "maricón" or "maricona" (applied to men) with a friendly tone.
     
  21. Perropardo Junior Member

    United States English and Spanish
    In addition to "gay," one can also use the word "homosexual" in a polite way. In a world where most "gays" have experienced quite a lot of discrimination, the use of other words -- certainly including the word "maricón" and everything else in Translator99's comprehensive list -- risk causing insult, whether or not the the speaker intends to be insulting.
     
  22. Broccolicious Senior Member

    Glorious Devonshire
    English - England
    Hi - when you use the word 'gay' in Spanish, how do you pronounce it? I have a feeling it's pronounced in the same way as in English (ie to rhyme with 'pay' or 'day'), rather than to rhyme with 'sky' or 'buy' - is that right?
     
  23. verence

    verence Senior Member

    Madrid (Spain)
    Spain (Spanish)
    Most people pronounce it as "day", although some pronounce it as "buy". Both are understable and cannot be confused with any other word.
     
  24. Antpax

    Antpax Ex-Moderador

    Madrid
    Spanish Spain
    Hi,

    I think most of people say it with the English pronounciation, I mean like "day" or "pay", but RAE consider that the correct way to pronounce it is like "sky" or "buy". Here is the link to RAE.

    Cheers.

    Ant
     
  25. Misao

    Misao Senior Member

    back in Soria
    Zaragoza(Spain)- Spanish
    Hi everybody,

    As some of you have said, the negative connotation is given by the entonation you put when you call somebody "maricón". My father or uncle use this term with a completely different meaning (although they know it is mainly referred to homosexual men). Some examples:

    - Serás maricón! --> which can be more like "You lucky bastard!"

    Sometimes, it is used with an affective connotation. But all these "bad words" sound like affective ones among friends and depending on the contexts.

    regarding this wide list, I would like to say some more: lila, sopla-nucas o muerde-almohadas (which I don't like, but I've heard sometimes),

    Cheers,

    Misao.
     
  26. Broccolicious Senior Member

    Glorious Devonshire
    English - England
    You know, I'm just not sure I agree. Sorry. I think any variation on 'gay' used in a derogatory sense, even between friends or in an affectionate manner, is offensive. Imagine substituting a derogatory word for someone with a disability, or from an ethnic minority - would that be acceptable?
     
  27. Miguel Antonio Senior Member

    Galicia
    Galego (Rías Baixas)
    This is true from what I have experienced too, and in fact, the opening speech for the European Gay Pride held in Madrid in 2007 included the word maricón, which led to a small controversy similar to the one we are discussing here, as some people (gay or not) were against this friendly, familiar use.

    And now, to add some more spice to this broth we are concocting, this thread: http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=855799 discussed a related topic, and my conclusion as per my post(s) there is that the Spanish word mariliendre (a veritable neologism) is not at all derogatory when compared to the English suggestion of "fag hag"

    All the best, my dear forer@s :)

    MA
     
  28. Enrikillo_DD

    Enrikillo_DD Senior Member

    Lima
    Peru - Spanish
    Now some people and the media (in Perú) used to say "indefinido" to mention to effeminate and gays men, the rest of the terms are derogatory.
     
  29. Translator99 Senior Member

    South America - Spanish
    In Latin America, I think the word "gay" is mainly used by those homosexuals who want to be seen as more affluent or "sophisticated." For example, in an episode of the Show de Christina, an homosexual guest told another: "te las das de muy gay, pero no pasas de ser una simple loquita."
     
  30. Junot New Member

    English

    I must say I like "indefinido." Indefinite. I'll pass that along to my gay friends. It could be shortened to "indies.":D
     
  31. Translator99 Senior Member

    South America - Spanish
    I think "indefinido" would work well for bisexuals but not for homosexuals, as they have very definite sexual preferences.
     
  32. Broccolicious Senior Member

    Glorious Devonshire
    English - England
    I think bisexual people would say that they have definite sexual preferences too!

    'Indefinido' for 'effeminate gay men'? What's the implication there - that we're not quite sure if they're male or female? If so, that's incredibly offensive!
     
  33. Junot New Member

    English


    This thread has gone from being an interesting exchange on words to being more than a little silly. When I jokingly suggested "indefinido" it did not mean neither male nor female nor "effeminate gay men" nor anything specific or rude. There's no need to read into such off-hand comments something that's not there. Perhaps it is time to close this thread.:rolleyes:

    I want to thank everyone for weighing in on this subject. It's been most helpful. I am now bowing out of the discussion.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2008
  34. Moritzchen Senior Member

    Los Angeles, CA
    Spanish, USA
    But you didn't suggest "indefinido" Junot, Enrikillo did in post #28.
     
  35. Diani

    Diani Junior Member

    The Universe
    Peru, Spanish
    Totally agree with Caliban. If you want to be harmful I think that could be this way:
    faggot: maricón
    fag: marica
    I personally think that "cabro" has become too common to be considered as strong as maricón. The "no seas cabro" example is cristal clear. If you don't want to be harmful you just can say "gay"; it is used as if it was a Spanish word. For example, if you want to talk about the gay community in Peru, you talk about the LGTB community (lesbianas, gays, travestis y bisexuales).
    Hope this helps!
     
  36. Translator99 Senior Member

    South America - Spanish
    I think the word "cabro" applied to gay men is only used in Peru. In other countries, it has a different meaning. For example, in Chile it is used for children, while in other countries it means proxeneta, or somebody whose partner has cheated on (i.e, "un cornudo')
     
  37. Diani

    Diani Junior Member

    The Universe
    Peru, Spanish
    hmmm, i think that in mexico the word is not exactly cabro but "cabrón". please correct if i'm wrong. in that case, cabrón is same as saying "guy" or "kid".
    yup, agree too, only in peru means gay.
    this discussion has been really interesting, by the way.
     
  38. Enrikillo_DD

    Enrikillo_DD Senior Member

    Lima
    Peru - Spanish
    I think that cabrón means: "son of his mother" or someone who blow up himself quickly.
    It's a good idea that mexican people give their opinion.
     
  39. Translator99 Senior Member

    South America - Spanish
    As per RAE:

    cabrón, na.
    (Del aum. de cabra).

    1. adj. coloq. Dicho de una persona, de un animal o de una cosa: Que hace malas pasadas o resulta molesto. U. t. c. s.
    2. adj. vulg. Se dice del hombre al que su mujer es infiel, y en especial si lo consiente. U. t. c. s.
    3. adj. coloq. Cuba. Disgustado, de mal humor.
    4. adj. coloq. Cuba Dicho de un hombre: Experimentado y astuto. U. t. c. s.
    5. adj. Méx. Dicho de una persona: De mal carácter. U. t. c. s.
    6. m. Macho de la cabra.
    7. m. Hombre que aguanta cobardemente los agravios o impertinencias de que es objeto.
    8. m. Am. Mer. Rufián que trafica con prostitutas.
     
  40. hwonder New Member

    Bogotá, Colombia
    United States
    In Colombia maricón is definitely pretty strongly pejorative, whereas marica is seen (almost universally) by younger people as being softer. In fact, it's become fairly common to call your friends (both male and female) marica, especially while joking. It pretty much carries the same meaning as the Mexican buey/guey/güey.
     
  41. rockapiedra

    rockapiedra Senior Member

    Chile
    Spanish
    Aqu'i en chile "cabros" se ocupa como para decir: Amigos. En cambio para decir maricon, hay una infinidad de palabras:
    Colison, Maraco, hueco,colifleto,fleto,colipato,gay, solo unas pocas.
     
  42. loginpleaseplease

    loginpleaseplease Senior Member

    Madrid
    English - UK
    I think the term "faggot" can never be said in a friendly or endearing manner, whereas "maricón" in Spanish can sometimes be meant that way. Faggot is a word that has a really derogatory sense to it now
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2008
  43. la zarzamora

    la zarzamora Senior Member

    buenos aires
    argentina-spanish
    Estoy de acuerdo.
     
  44. Mirlo

    Mirlo Senior Member

    Missouri
    Castellano, Panamá/ USA
    En Panamá además de otras ya mencionadas usamos "cueco" para "faggot".

    Saludos,
     
  45. Alderan New Member

    Spain Spanish
    In Spain, at least in large areas, maricón is the most derogative word to refer to a gay man. It is the worst name you can call a gay man or a man in general.
     
  46. Kraken

    Kraken Senior Member

    Valladolid (España)
    Castellano (Español)
    What makes the difference is not the word itself, but how you say it. At least in Spain.
    You can hear someone call you "a clever guy" and get really offended because you know they were using the irony to call you a stupid without saying it. In the same way, many people use the words marica, mariquita, maricón... to refer to their friends, and that makes no offence at all. You can hear people calling their friend "hijoputa" (son of a bitch), and they just laugh about it.

    Now, some words are agreed to have a certain meaning.
    - If you hear about homosexuals in a political speech, they will say "homosexuales" or "gays" (btw, pronounced as "guys").
    We could say that Gay and Homosexual are definitions and normally there's no pun intended.
    - Marica usually refers to someone effeminate in their manners, usually having nothing to do with their sexual preferences. From slightly offensive to plainly offensive, depending on the entonation.
    - Mariquita is more or less the same, only more familiar, more fun or even when a gay person talks to another gay in a humorous way; just like a negro person calling his brother a "nigga". I wouldn`t dare calling Nigga a black person, but they can do it and no offence is taken.
    - Maricón, more or less the same, I mean, they can call themselves "maricón", but if you call them "maricón", that would be considered as an insult.
    Maricón has more meanings, as previously stated.
    Serás maricón!, or
    Qué maricón!, when someone surprises you.
    Ven aquí, maricón! Don't run, it will only make things worse - specially when someone is talking to his own brat.

    ;)
     
  47. Smitch18 Senior Member

    Mexico
    English, U.K.
    I think that 'maricón' has a broader meaning than 'faggot'. Maricón could be translated as faggot, depending on the context, but it also has that softer side, which faggot usually lacks. As some have suggested here maricón could be 'sissy' when used in the context of someone (male) refusing to do something, especially daring, 'no seas maricón! Salta!'. I think a good word in English that covers both of these sides to the word 'maricón' is 'poof' or, softer, 'poofter'. It is a Britishicism though, and not used in the US.
     
  48. chileno

    chileno Senior Member

    Las Vegas, Nv. USA
    Castellano - Chile
    And here in the US, I imagine in other English speaking must be the same, it is a drag (no pun intended) for those gays that know "some" Spanish and they hear someone saying "no seas maricón" and they immediately feel harassed, etc... :mad:
     
  49. Smitch18 Senior Member

    Mexico
    English, U.K.
    Yes, possibly, probably, the Spanish are definitely a little behind on political correctness though it is changing slowly I think. When I was living there in the 90s TV was a bit like Britain in the 70s, kind of Banny Hill, not PC. Ironically, Britain is one the few countries where you no longer see Benny Hill because it was thrown out for being sexist years ago. Just like Miss World. There you have it, Spain is still a Miss World country; but it's more to do with innocence and lack of refelection than anything else, it's generally not nasty. Also, in general, the Spanish swear an awful lot, they call their best friends terrible names just to say hi, they do a lot of defecating on certain religious figures, and I think most of it just rolls of the tongue before they think. I do get your point though. And I also think that language influences thought/perception. I hate to think of children hearing that kind of stuff before they have even had the chance to get their own prejudices.
     
  50. chileno

    chileno Senior Member

    Las Vegas, Nv. USA
    Castellano - Chile
    Who says that PC is really being correct?

    Probably you don't understand the feeling of being repressed for how you think and express it. ;)
     

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