maricón/faggot

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 by a moderator:
  • Miguel Antonio

    Senior Member
    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 by a moderator:

    Caliban

    Senior Member
    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 by a moderator:

    Junot

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

    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 by a moderator:

    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 by a moderator:

    Caliban

    Senior Member
    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 by a moderator:

    aurilla

    Senior Member
    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".
     

    Translator99

    Senior Member
    South America - Spanish
    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 "maricon" is more like saying "queen" in English. Comments?
    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.
     

    Junot

    New Member
    English
    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.


    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.
     

    scotu

    Senior Member
    Chicago 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.
    The word "gay" is understood and used throughout the Spanish speaking world with the same meaning as in English.
     

    fsabroso

    Senior Member
    Perú / Castellano
    Cabro in Perú 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"
    That is the use of "cabro" in Peru.

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

    You know "regionalismos".
     

    Miguel Antonio

    Senior Member
    Galego (Rías Baixas)
    Maricón can be sissy.
    Faggot would be puto.
    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.
     

    yayu

    Senior Member
    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
     

    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.
     

    Antpax

    Senior Member
    Spanish Spain
    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.
    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
     

    verence

    Senior Member
    Spain (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"
    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.
     

    Perropardo

    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.
     

    Broccolicious

    Senior Member
    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?
     

    verence

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

    Antpax

    Senior Member
    Spanish Spain
    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?
    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
     

    Misao

    Senior Member
    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.
     

    Broccolicious

    Senior Member
    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?
     

    Miguel Antonio

    Senior Member
    Galego (Rías Baixas)
    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.
    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
     

    Enrikillo_DD

    Senior Member
    Peru - 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.
    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.
     

    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."
     

    Junot

    New Member
    English
    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.

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

    Translator99

    Senior Member
    South America - Spanish
    I must say I like "indefinido." Indefinite. I'll pass that along to my gay friends. It could be shortened to "indies.":D
    I think "indefinido" would work well for bisexuals but not for homosexuals, as they have very definite sexual preferences.
     

    Broccolicious

    Senior Member
    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!
     

    Junot

    New Member
    English
    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!


    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 by a moderator:

    Diani

    Member
    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!
     

    Translator99

    Senior Member
    South America - 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!
    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')
     

    Diani

    Member
    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.
     

    Enrikillo_DD

    Senior Member
    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.
     

    Translator99

    Senior Member
    South America - 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.
    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.
     

    hwonder

    New Member
    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.
     

    rockapiedra

    Senior Member
    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.
     

    loginpleaseplease

    Senior Member
    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:

    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.
     

    Kraken

    Senior Member
    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.

    ;)
     

    Smitch18

    Senior Member
    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.
     

    chileno

    Senior Member
    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:
     

    Smitch18

    Senior Member
    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.
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top