Margaret Thatcher handbagging

dimelo2

Senior Member
English-United States
This is a relatively new term. "To handbag" was already colloquial usage, meaning "to hit someone with a handbag", but it came to be used figuratively in describing Margaret Thatcher's approach to politics.

From Oxford Dictionary: "This approach is also reflected in the verb handbag, meaning “to subject to a forthright verbal assault or to strident criticism”

One use is the following:

"Treasury figures published last week show how good she has proved at handbagging the civil service”.

Does anyone have an idea how one might translate this into Spanish? It's criticize and intimidate at the same time, but with the image of hitting someone....
 
  • UnchangeableName

    Senior Member
    English-USA-East Midland
    Arengar, vilipendiar, or humillar might work, depending on the context.

    Hitting someone with a hand bag sounds like the British equivalent of dar un chanclazo. But maybe the only people who do that are Mexican-American abuelitas.
     

    SydLexia

    Senior Member
    UK English
    The reason for the success of the word "handbagging" had a lot to do with Mrs Thatcher's combative style and the fact that she was a woman and carried a handbag but was also because of the similarity between the words "handbag" and "sandbag".

    As a verb "sandbag" has several meanings but one essential one is "to attack/hit someone with a sandbag". A sockful of sand makes a good improvised cosh - a weapon that has great hitting power, does not leave marks, and is unlikely to kill. There was thus a whole range of meaning just waiting to be connected to Maggie's fashion accessory - and the idea that she might carry a brick in her handbag for offensive purposes seemed to fit her character.

    As to the translation, Unchangeable is on the right track.

    syd
     

    dimelo2

    Senior Member
    English-United States
    Yeah! I like the chanclazo! I think that would probably work in much of Latin America, unchangeable name. Thanks!!
     

    UnchangeableName

    Senior Member
    English-USA-East Midland
    I see some clear parallels here.

    "A sockful of sand makes a good improvised cosh - a weapon that has great hitting power, does not leave marks, and is unlikely to kill."
    La abuelita Mexicana - has great hitting power, does not leave marks, and is unlikely to kill.

    Sandbagging -> Handbagging
    Chanclazo físico -> Chanclazo verbal

    "Chanclazo" is not yet used as a term of art in political discourse, but perhaps it is time to introduce it.
    Rajoy to Mas: "Siguele y te voy a dar un chanclazo!"
     

    UnchangeableName

    Senior Member
    English-USA-East Midland
    I've never run across any examples of "chanclazo" being used outside of Mexican-American communities. Unless you can personally confirm it's use in other parts of Latin Amerca, I'd stick with words that can be found in a dictionary and avoid regional slang. I'm intrigued by the possibility of using "chanclazo" as a translation for "handbagging", but I'm not suggesting it seriously. I apologize for not making that clear.
     

    Ferrol

    Senior Member
    Spanish.España
    "Chanclazo" would by no means be understood for these parts."Arengar", means " exhort" here and would not convey the right meaning either.While "Vilipendiar" or "humillar" would to some extent , I wonder if they are strong enough translations for "handbag" in this context
     

    sinderik

    Senior Member
    Spanish - España
    Bolsazo existe en castellano. Es como se defienden las prostitutas. Refleja perfectamente una violencia que sale por debajo de la clase. Un chanclazo es muy directo, no es propio de Meryl Streep.
     
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    UnchangeableName

    Senior Member
    English-USA-East Midland
    When you can't find a translation of the word, translate the definition. If handbagging is strong criticism, then
    "Cifras del Tesoro publicados la semana pasada muestran la eficacia de su fuerte crítica a la administración pública."

    It's not as colorful as "handbagging", but the meaning is clear.
     

    jilar

    Senior Member
    Español
    This is a relatively new term. "To handbag" was already colloquial usage, meaning "to hit someone with a handbag", but it came to be used figuratively in describing Margaret Thatcher's approach to politics.

    From Oxford Dictionary: "This approach is also reflected in the verb handbag, meaning “to subject to a forthright verbal assault or to strident criticism

    One use is the following:

    "Treasury figures published last week show how good she has proved at handbagging the civil service”.

    Does anyone have an idea how one might translate this into Spanish? It's criticize and intimidate at the same time, but with the image of hitting someone....

    Yo te propongo, al menos de manera formal, usar el verbo vapulear
    http://www.wordreference.com/es/en/translation.asp?spen=vapulear
    que en su tercera acepción dice:
    Reprender, criticar o hacer reproches duramente a alguien.
    Además de significar Golpear o dar repetidamente contra alguien o algo.

    Relacionado con el bolso, no creo que tengamos un verbo que ajuste bien. Pero, en España al menos, tenemos un caso aún más grave de lo que pudiera hacer Thatcher con su bolso. Había una ¿cantante? que ganó cierta fama, sería por lo mal que lo hacía, y también se hizo famosa su madre, ya que en el bolso llevaba un ladrillo, listo para lanzárselo a quien criticase a su hija.
    El nombre artístico era Tamara, lo ha cambiado varias veces.
    https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yurena
    Su madre, Margarita Seisdedos (sí, Sixfingers) http://quefue.es/margarita-seisdedos/
    En fin, amor de madre. Alguno se llevó algún golpe con el bolso, y dentro estaba el ladrillo :D
     
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    Doncar

    Senior Member
    Spanish, Spain
    I agree with jilar. Vapulear in Spanish and lambast in English both mean what handbagging is trying to convey, so why make a new word when there is already a word to describe that action?

    But then I checked the definition from the Oxford dictionary and it said this:
    verb (handbags, handbagging, handbagged)
    [WITH OBJECT] informal, humorous
    (Of a woman)verbally attack or crush (a person or idea) ruthlessly and forcefully:I saw her last week and got handbagged for 15 minutes
    [ 1980s: coined by Julian Critchley, Conservative MP, with reference to Margaret Thatcher's ministerial style in cabinet meetings]
    So my question is: Can a man handbag a person or handbagging pertains only to women?
     
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    UnchangeableName

    Senior Member
    English-USA-East Midland
    So my question is: Can a man handbag a person or handbagging pertains only to women?

    I would say that it has less to do with gender than with whether or not you usually carry a handbag. The guy at a friend's wedding who the women agreed had chosen an unflattering skirt and blouse, yes. The ex-boss who did all the repairs on her muscle cars, no.
     
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