el pinche desgraciado


New Member
American English/New Mexico USA
I am working on a paper for my college course in poetry. I need to know the translation of the phrase "el pinche desgraciado." I know pinche can be translated as damn and desgraciado is translated as unfortunate one, but I also know that is a literal translation.
  • edsolis

    New Member
    España, Español
    Which is the context?

    in European Spanish means kitchen boy, however in Mexican Spanish it is used as an insult, as you know.

    Desgraciado, means also unlucky, unhappy, wretch and swine.

    Pinche desgraciado as insult I would translate it as damn swine.


    New Member
    American English/New Mexico USA
    This is a quote from a poem titled "Ghost Trap" by Gloria Anzaldúa. In the poem, a new viuda is trying to get rid of her husband's ghost who has returned to bother her. This is why I believe the phrase to be of a stronger emphasis than just the unhappy/unlucky wretch/swine. I was more inclined to believe it might be equivalent to "damn bastard." Thank you both for your comments.

    Next morning she woke with deep grooves down the corners of her mouth and bruises on her mouth, breasts, arms, and inner thighs. She peered under the bed and saw that the door of the casita was open. She walked from room to room looking for el pinche desgraciado and muttering to herself, How am I going to get rid of that f*****?


    Senior Member
    English & Spanish, USA born
    Pinche can also be stronger, as "F---in' swine, scumbag, fool.

    I have a lot of trouble translating desgraciado depending on context.

    In this one, I maybe would use fool or scumbag.

    In reality, swine or unfortunate one sounds too textbook and unrealistic to everyday speech.

    Idiot, fool, scumbag, bastard, low-life sound more realistic than the text definitions mentioned above.

    It's similar to like the situation when people use "gee" instead of well.

    "Gee" is textbook, outdated, and not realistic.

    The same with "unfortunate one""--very awkward as a native northamerican.

    Swine is somewhat used, but more so my above realistic examples.


    Senior Member
    español mexicano
    I like "miserable/damn bastard"
    In Mexico, pinche desgraciado may be an insult as strong as you want it to be, depending on the entonation and how often you use it. In this case, it expresses the frustration this woman is feeling. Just think, what would you say after "Leave alone..."? (maybe f***ing bastard!)


    Senior Member
    Hola you una vez escuche a una senora decir: "Es un desgraciado" con una entonation de furia, creo que quiso decir algo muy feo.
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