en un extremo conformismo

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Vocabulary / Vocabulario Español-Inglés' started by VTR, Feb 25, 2010.

  1. VTR New Member

    Mexican Spanish
    Estoy hablando acerca de que la sociedad vive en un extremo conformismo, se dice ¿extreme conformity?
  2. spencerfox7 Senior Member

    Ohio, USA
    USA - English/Inglés
    Sí, claro.
  3. AmigoDito

    AmigoDito Senior Member

    Coarsegold, California, USA
    English - USA Expatriate
    Hello forum members,

    I've been thinking a lot about "conformismo" vs. "conformism/conformity", and I feel strongly that they are "falsos amigos". Also, "conformism" and "conformity" are distinct from each other. Likewise, "conformista" is not the same as "conformist".

    I've been working on translating between Mexican Spanish and American English. In Mexico, "conformismo" and "conformista", as I see it, have to do with complacency, accepting the status quo, and acquiescing too easily to things that should be resisted, protested against or overcome. In motivational literature, "conformism" is often opposed to "superación", which is "overcoming" or "self-improvement". Notice the definición under the Spanish listing:

    1.m. Actitud del que se adapta a cualquier circunstancia o situación con excesiva facilidad:
    su conformismo es totalmente opuesto a mi rebeldía.

    In American English, perhaps in mine especially, "conformism" has to do with conforming to conventional ideas and rules, especially the fallacy of confusing conventional rules with true virtue or righteousness. Notice the English definition for "conformist":

    a person who conforms to social convention.

    "Conformity" has little or nothing to do with conformism: it simply refers to the state of conforming to some standard or pattern.

    Now that I have sounded almost dogmatic, I would like to hear your opinions. ¿Qué opinan los demás?

    Gracias de antemano por sus aportes.
  4. SeekingJesus

    SeekingJesus Senior Member

    Estado de México
    Español mexicano
    wow.. amigoDito.. very helpful

    creo que conformismo es a conformism
    como conformity es a conformidad

    una pregunta que hemos de hacernos es si en el español hay una diferencia entre conformidad y conformismo.. :confused:
  5. xpell Senior Member

    Spanish - Spain
    Sí, sin duda. Pedimos la conformidad, que tiene un tono positivo, no el conformismo, que lo tiene negativo.

    "Jefe, ¿da su conformidad para hacer esto?" -> es una pregunta correcta y aceptable.
    "Jefe, ¿cuento con su conformismo para hacer esto?" -> y te mirarían muy raro. ;)
  6. sound shift

    sound shift Senior Member

    Derby (central England)
    English - England
    This Spanish definición equates to my mind with "a tendency to take the line of least resistance", "a tendency to swim with the tide", "a tendency to keep one's head down". For "conformismo" the Collins Spanish Dictionary offers "conformism" (which in my personal British English might fit the definición that you have provided, but it is not a word I use very often so I am not entirely sure; and in any case I would probably use several words to express the idea, as above) and "conventionality" (which in my view does not fit the definición that you have provided, AmigoDito).
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2012
  7. AmigoDito

    AmigoDito Senior Member

    Coarsegold, California, USA
    English - USA Expatriate
    I found another context in the book I'm working on, this time with "conformarse". Original:

    La educación eleva el espíritu del ser humano que le hace preferir lo mejor; lo enseña a no conformarse, sino por el contrario, a mejorar su forma de vida ejercitando la energía creadora que posee para alcanzar mejores fines.


    Education raises the human spirit, and makes us prefer the best; it teaches us not to settle for the ordinary, but rather, to improve our lifestyle by exercising the creative energy that we have to achieve better ends.

    To me it seems clear that "conformarse" here is not talking about conforming to the conventions of society, but settling for something less than the best.

    What do you think?
  8. Brucio

    Brucio Senior Member

    Very helpful thread. I've always equated conformismo with a certain level of apathy and "not sticking out", as sound shift alludes to.
  9. AmigoDito

    AmigoDito Senior Member

    Coarsegold, California, USA
    English - USA Expatriate
    I found this entry under the WordReference Spanish definition for conformidad:
    1. Tolerancia y resignación ante las circunstancias desgraciadas o difíciles:
      el equipo aceptó la derrota con conformidad.
    This is the same sense expressed by the word "conformismo" in the texts I work on, even though that sense is not exactly given under the WR definition of "conformismo".

    This idea of accepting hardships and difficulties with resignation is almost unknown to the English concept of "conformism". Therefore I say "conformismo" and "conformism" are falsos amigos on this concept. I would recommend translating "conformismo" in such a context with "resignation" or something similar. "Not sticking out" may also work if it implies "not being more successful than the average person" or "not rising above the average condition."


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