llamo (Pronunciación y/ll, Argentina)

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Grammar / Gramática Español-Inglés' started by Redline2200, Mar 6, 2006.

  1. Redline2200

    Redline2200 Senior Member

    Illinois, United States
    English - United States
    I have been studying spanish for quite some time and have taken a strong interest in the differences amongst the accents of spanish. I hope some of the Argentinians on this board can give me a hand...

    Which is more frequently said for the "y" or "ll" sound, "sh" like in sheep, or "zh" like in measure? I have heard a lot of people from argentina speak (on the radio, in music, on tv, etc.) and I cannot find out why some say it "sh" and others "zh." (I have also noticed that while singing, many pronounce a hard "j' but that is another topic completely).
    So what is the difference between "me zhamo" and " me shamo"?
  2. Rayines

    Rayines Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    Wow!..It's impossible for me to realize about it. I'd need to record my voice during a whole day, in order to notice which is the real accent. In my case, I'd say "sh" absolutely, but thinking a little more about it, it is sometimes an exact mixture of bouth sounds. Bfff....:).
    Once thing more: you don't need to write "Acento" and "Argentino" with capital letters: "El acento argentino". :thumbsup:
  3. balears Senior Member

    Illes Balears
    España (español & català)
    I'm not from Argentina. But I have my own opinion about those sh and zh.
    I'll try to explain it, but it's only an amateur opinion.
    El sonido de Y, en principio, es I. Pero la Y es consonante, por eso su pronunciación tiende a transformarse en J (John). El español no tiene, en principio, los sonidos como en John, zero, roses, other, etc... La pronuncia del español no está habituada a estos sonidos, por eso en algunos lugares como Argentina, se tiende a convertir el sonido J (John) en SH. Es posible que ellos ni se den cuenta, porque el sonido J "no existe", para ellos es equivalente a SH. Es decir: Yo: Io -> Jo = Sho.
    La LL aún recorre un camino más largo. Su sonido en "español correcto" no lo sé definir, no existe en inglés y se usa poco en español. Se suele cambiar por I porque es más fácil... y a partir de ahí va mutando, como la Y, según el lugar del hablante...
  4. Residente Calle 13 Senior Member

    New York City
    Yo pensaba que era o por Brasil o por influencia gallega. Son solo teorías que tenía yo. No he visto nada concreto sobre el asunto.
  5. danielfranco

    danielfranco Senior Member

    Y yo pensaba que el acento argentino estaba presente por la gran influencia italiana y alemana en su población... Que ignorante soy, ¿verdad?
    Dan F
  6. grumpus Senior Member

    San Diego, CA
    English U.S.

    Hi Redline et al,
    that's a good observation. In Argentina, perhaps, neighboring regions there
    is sort of a "free variation" of the "sh" and "zh" phoneme. Maybe there are some regional differences, class differences etc that could pin down when they when one phoneme is used and not the other. I am not sure why. Let's see if others have noticed this.

  7. argencine Member

    Buenos Aires
    Hola: Yo soy de Argentina y tal vez pueda ayudar.
    On the red letter we say sh and in the green letter we pronounce e as in or green or speed.
    In Buenos Aires, Argentina, there is not difference betwin sh or zh, we say always "sh" . Is the same for Y o for LL.
    Althoug, when the letter Y is alone o finish a word, we pronounce "ee" like green.

    Only in the Corrientes Province, they pronounce the letter LL like Li , for instance LLUVIA, ( rain ), they say Liuvia. Like: lee-u-b-ah (aprox)
    I hop this help. Regards.
  8. Redline2200

    Redline2200 Senior Member

    Illinois, United States
    English - United States
    that does help...but what about the "zh" sound? You said there is no difference, but is it considered strange if a person uses that pronunciation? and while we are on this topic...what about the hard "j" sound (like in joke). is it odd or looked-down-upon if a person uses it in Argentina?
  9. Residente Calle 13 Senior Member

    New York City
    Everytime I discuss this issue I end up feeling like I'm five years old...

    In one song that I just listened to I heard the same person say "tú no eres como yo" and "porque zho busco" and also "que no se haga la vizhera."

    Without getting into the who tú/vos thing (another issue that makes me feel like I'm five) I think you might get a great deal of variation even in the same individuals.
  10. argencine Member

    Buenos Aires
    Other diference is when people is from high class ( rich people ), they soft the "sh" sound and pronounce "zh". The schools for people who whants to work in radio recomend the zh, but it is not common in average people.
  11. ITA

    ITA Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    argentina español
    Mas que "acento argentino "yo diría que es "acento porteño".No todos hablamos de la misma manera,depende mucho de las regiones.......bueno como debe suceder en otros paices supongo.
    Desde Bs As,con acento porteño ITA.
  12. grumpus Senior Member

    San Diego, CA
    English U.S.
    Hola ITA,
    si es cierto, hasta yo (hace mucho tiempo) podia distinguir entre los acentos de Cordoba y Buenos Aires.

  13. Julito New Member

    Argentina is a vast country that received may different migrations during its history. From the first aborigine populations to the Spanish conquerors, passing through the massive Italian immigration in the 19th century and the belle époque French influence, the second big migration from Europe during the first half of the 20th century to the more recently migration from neighbor countries. Here you will find cities with most German people who have their own Octoberfest, Welsh style cities where people drinks tea at five, the second largest Jewish community outside Israel after USA, very deep Syria Lebanese roots in some north west provinces, even some Polish roots people living like aborigines in the middle of the jungle and off course Italian and Spanish in every corner. That is why it is impossible to define an Argentinean, and even more difficult to define the way we speak.
    Anyway, if we want to generalize, we could say that the Argentineans speak the Spanish language like Italians (remember that Argentina have received double amount of Italian Immigrants that EEUU inclusive).
    About how we pronounce the Y or the LL, that will depend on the area and the social position. Considering that Buenos Aires (CapitalCity and Surroundings) has 50% of the population of Argentina (17.000.000 people of 35.000.000) we could take that sample to generalize and say that SH sound is more popular and the ZH sound is more refined style of talking.

    I leave you with a phrase from one of the most important writers in our history, Jorge Luis Borges, who said in a very ironic way that an Argentinean is an Italian who speaks Spanish, educated by English and wants to be French.
  14. Patagonia116 Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    Argentina - Spanish
    No, no sos ningún ignorante. En la pronunciación o acento argentino, ha influido muchísimo el idioma italiano (aquí hay más descendientes de italianos que de españoles).
    En cuanto a los alemanes, su comunidad no es tan grande, y la influencia del idioma alemán aquí pienso que es mínima.

  15. mjmuak

    mjmuak Senior Member

    Spanish Spain (Andalusia)
    yo tenía entendido que, en general, las mujeres usan la sonora ( zh) y los hombres la sorda (sh), me lo comentó una vez mi hermana que estudió las variedades del espanol (pero quizá estoy confundida)
  16. Patagonia116 Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    Argentina - Spanish
    Sí, siento decir que estás confundida. Las cosas no son así con respecto al español que hablamos en Argentina.
  17. Patagonia116 Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    Argentina - Spanish
    Lo siento, pero hay muchos datos incorrectos en lo que estás diciendo.
    Pueden confundir a la gente que conoce poco nuestro país.
  18. Kangy Senior Member

    Buenos Aires, Argentina
    Argentina [Spanish]
    I personally use the "sh" sound, and even though it's exactly the same if people pronounce "zh", I notice it instantly.
  19. zpoludnia swiata Senior Member

    chile english, spanish, german
    The typical Argentine accent on verbs, in words such as "ponés", "llamame", "apurate", etc... has nothing to do with Italian, and everything to do with the vosotros 2nd person plural form of Spanish. It already happened during the colonial period that in the Vicroyalty of La Plata (in Chile also, and some areas of Colombia), the vos form was prefered (possibly for similar reasons that "you" dominated in English instead of "thou"--thats another story.) Thus Spanish "llamais" became Argentine "llamás" and Chilean "llamai" (hence Chilean forms like "cachai, no te preocupí, etc...). So, this is a development of Spanish in these regions.
    Italian probably only affected vocabulary and intonation, especially of the Buenos Aires region. Interestingly enough, immigrants, even in huge quantities rarely affect languages spoken in an area to a very profound degree, whether it be the US, Argentina, or other countries. However, there are a lot of urban legends about this. But, linguistic research has shown that this is not the case.
    As for the difference between "sh" and "zh" for expressing "y" or "ll" in Argentine Spanish. A lot of respondents, even from there don´t seem to distinguish between them. That´s fine, because phonetically Spanish does not distinguish between these sounds, they are just considered to be variations of each other, they are not used to distinguish meaning. Just as in English, it doesn´t matter whether you pronounce the "ch" farther back in the mouth or near the teeth (it doesn´t matter in Spanish either), but in some languages (such as Polish) this does matter, and the difference is used to distinguish words from each other.
    Another example. In Chilean Spanish, it doesn´t matter for meaning whether you say "Chile" or "Shile", "leche" or "leshe", etc... as both sounds are considered to be versions of the same. The only BIG and IMPORTANT difference is that they are marked by class, the "sh" version is low class.
    I hope these explanations help. Really!
  20. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
  21. Redline2200

    Redline2200 Senior Member

    Illinois, United States
    English - United States
    Bueno, después de haber escrito este thread, yo viajé a Buenos Aires y pasé dos semanas allá, y creo conocer este tema mucho mejor ahora.
    No era mi intención ofender a nadie diciendo "acento argentino"...sólo era un error mío.
    Muchas gracias por todas las respuestas, encuentro este tema (el tema de la forma de hablar que existe en Bs As y también la de todo el país) muy interesante y toda la "ayuda argentina" sirvió mucho :).
  22. thenewteacher Senior Member

    Spain Spanish
    Te refieres a como pronuncian lo sporteños la "Y" y la "LL". La pronuncian como la "SH" inglesa, no hacen diferencia.
  23. Perico Nuevo Senior Member

    Canada (English, Spanish)
    No no... estoy seguro de que no has ofendido a nadie! Decir "American accent" o "Canadian accent" es lo mismo
  24. idkydk45 New Member

    American English

    Estoy de acuerdo con vos. Si te fijas los profesores, gente en la radio y la gente de clase alta suelen hacer un sonido que suena mas como 'J' en ingles. Al otro lado la mayoria de los portenos hacen el "sh," incluyendo la clase media alta.

    Si bien hacen eso, me parece que con algunas palabras suena mejor una manera de prununciar para todos. Por ejemplo, mientras los argentinos no suelen usar la palabra "alli," cuando lo hacen siempre tiene el "j/zh" sonido y no "ashi."
  25. duvija

    duvija Senior Member

    Spanish - Uruguay
    Ok, would you allow me to stick my nose in this? some historical linguistics shouldn't hurt too much.
    Coming from Uruguay, in my young years (counting in dinosaur time) for 'y' and/or 'll' we used the sound 'zh' (I hope everybody knows the sound spelled in such a strange way). (Question: How do I insert the proper phonetic symbol here? I can't find it).

    In Buenos Aires, they had the same 'y/ll' sound as Montevideo did. Slowly, in the 60s. it started to change (the change started actually in Buenos Aires, and then went South and East, meaning it reached Montevideo about 10 years later). The traditional zh became a [sh], as more and more people started to switch. I mean, young people in particular (which is normal for sound change).

    Up to 20 years ago, in Montevideo the sound was still 'zh', but later on it switched so fast, I couldn't believe it (I go there about once a year, and visit Buenos Aires too. With my tape recorder, of course).
    Everybody I know, now says 'sh'. Even my childhood friends, all grandparents at this point, are starting to change the voiced to the voiceless. Young people don't even know it used to be zh.

    By now, all Buenos Aires and Montevideo are 'sheístas'. Considering there was never a sh in the language, that change doesn't confuse anybody.

    About the other strong [dzh] sound mentioned, the one that appears in absolute phrase initial position:
    - Quién está ahí?
    - dzho
    - qué tenés en esa bolsa
    - dzherba para el mate.
    also changes but not so drastically, and there is a reason for this:

    If the dzh strong voiced occlusive becomes voiceless, it would basically become our normal 'ch'. That means the 'new' ch sound would be intruding in a real old phoneme of the Sp. language, and therefore there is more resistance to such a change.

    Still, many studies on Buenos Aires speech claim (Harris et all) that the initial actually became a 'ch', and nobody used the dzh anylonger. I know that's too far, and I taped and analyzed those sounds, and yes, many people still hang on to the voiced consonant. Will it change completely for the next generation? maybe, maybe not. One thing we cannot know, is the future. It may vary again, go back, neutralize, assimilate, whatever you want. We cannot know.

  26. obz

    obz Senior Member

    Los foros de WR.
    Yankee English
    Como americano viviendo en Canadá, puedo decir con la certeza más alta que tienes toda la razón.... para los que no sean ni americanos ni canadienses;) Entre nosotros, nos damos cuenta de las diferencias, muchas tan sutiles que no importan o no se detectan, otras destacan plenamente y nos burlamos de nosotros como buenos vecino deberían hacer :).

    ¡Un salido!
  27. ManoloVM New Member

    Monterrey, Mexico
    Spanish - Northeastern Mexico

    You were listened to Cumbia Vishera....:) Aguante Damas Gratis y Pablito Lescano :).

    I am Mexican and I live in Buenos Aires for Six Months, and this pronunciation I guess, it depends of the person who speaks. I can't hardly find a generalization. Sometimes they might say Vishera, and other times they can say vizhera, specially in Younger People. Because I can say that older people use to pronounce more zh than sh.
  28. duvija

    duvija Senior Member

    Spanish - Uruguay

    Yes, it's totally age-related. Us, oldies, cannot use the sudden 'sh'. And don't even start with the Cumbia villera (I had to listen to 'te jiede la tanga')

  29. dianis_36 New Member

    Spanish (Argentina)
    Let me say as a porteña (from Buenos Aires) that, generally, we use the sh sound. Again, as some said, it depends specially on your social class. People from low classes use more the sh sound, whereas upper classes make use of the zh sound. Still, historically the "argentinian" pronunciation is sh, and that's why in middle classes you'll probably here it (though it may be not so pronounced).

    In the hole rest of Argentina I'm pritty sure you won't here the sh sound, or at least not that much.

    One more thing: as in any big city, being Buenos Aires so cosmopolitan, I personaly feel my way of speaking has changed. If I'm not mistaken I used to use more the sh sound, but now that I know a lot of people from the rest of Argentina and from other Latin countries where that sound is not heard, I have to say I'm not useing it that much. So, something else to take into account! Language is in constant change.
  30. JorgeHoracio Senior Member

    Spanish - Argentina
    I agree with duvija.

    The change in the 'porteño' (and the uruguayan) pronunciation of y/ll is moderately recent. The sh pronunciation started, I think, being a fashion trend of the very young. I'm old enough to recall times when no one used this sound.
    Nowadays it's used scarcely by people over 50/60, and all the time by most people under 40.
    I might add that the "older" sound is a bit lighter than the 'zh' sound, but some persons used to stress it more, nearing the French "j".

    In Argentina you'll find more variants:
    y/ll as the English "z" in bazooka
    as the English "s" in mess
    as i
    as ch
    and of course as someone has said here, in the "litoral" (the region near Paraguay) you'll hear the Castilian "ll", quite distinct from the "y"
  31. beautyobsessed New Member

    South Carolina, USA
    English-United States
    My professor sent me a link to this thread; this is so interesting! I just recently asked him about this. I am in my second semester of spanish, and I noticed on VHLCentral, our class website for the Aventuras textbook, that in a particular video, the young man was pronouncing his ll's with a sh or zh sound. We have learned thus far, more of a y or soft j sound. Learning the dialect of each area is so interesting! Thanks!

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