Spanish people VS Hispanic people

Discussion in 'English Only' started by temblor, Jan 4, 2010.

  1. temblor Senior Member

    Chinese Goetlands
    Hispanic ethnic group includes Mexicans and other Spanish-speaking people. My personal understanding, "Hispanic" refers to the group of people whose countries were used to be ruled by Spain and Spanish language & cultures. Hispanic people are descendant from Spanish people, but they are the same.

    But there's no other term similar with "Hispanic". I mean, for instance, is there any term which can be used to describe the group of French-speaking people, French descendants but they are not Frenchmen.
  2. Nunty

    Nunty Modified

    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    Do you have a question, temblor? :)
  3. pickarooney

    pickarooney Senior Member

    Provence, France
    English (Ireland)
    I've never quite understood whether Hispanic was an ethnic or linguistic thing. Are Spaniards also Hispanic? Are white Argentinians? Black Ecuadoreans? Basques?

    For other languages, the boring -phone suffix usually suffices.
  4. ><FISH'> Senior Member

    United Kingdom
    British English
    Anglophone - English-speaking
    Francophone - French-speaking
    ???ophone - Spanish-speaking
  5. temblor Senior Member

    Chinese Goetlands
  6. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    What do you mean by "they are the same"? Who are you referring to, the people of Spain, or the people of the former Spanish colonies, or both?

    They are called francophone, if they continue to speak either French or a dialect derived from French.

    The term Hispanic, as used and misused in the U.S., is a very mixed up, complex word.
    It is used for many purposes, and often the speakers don't know what they are saying.
    It may be used to refer to people who (1) speak Spanish or a dialect derived from Spanish, (2) are members of various ethnic groups.

    To avoid repetition of the many lengthy threads we have already had on that topic, please have a look at these:

    Hispanic, Latino, Chicano
    Hispanic - white
    Latino - Hispanic
  7. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    Your thread title and the question in your first post are rather different. It might be useful if you were to clarify whether the thread title is the topic you wish to discuss, or if you are interested in terminology for naming groups of people with a common language, or those with a common linguistic heritage, or something else.
  8. temblor Senior Member

    Chinese Goetlands
    Oh,sorry, that was my fault. it should be " they are not the same".

    I don't completely understand the term "Hispanic People". Suppose there's a group of native Spanish speakers who had lived in Latin America for generations, but they have no Spanish blood. Are they "Hispanic"?
  9. temblor Senior Member

    Chinese Goetlands
    OK, maybe I misled you.
    I don't completely understand "Hispanic" and the difference between "Spanish" and "Hispanic". My understanding, "Hispanic people" who are Spanish-speaking Latin Americans, are "Spanish people", too.

    Another instance, English-speaking people who were descendant from Englishmen and are living in British colonies, of course they can name themselves "English people". But why Hispanic people are not Spanish people. That is my main question.
  10. occlith

    occlith Senior Member

    English - USA
  11. Cypherpunk Senior Member

    Springdale, AR
    US, English
    The short version of the Spanish/Hispanic question is that Spanish people are people from Spain. Spanish-speaking people includes anyone who speaks Spanish (including me). Of Spanish descent means that at some point in the past, some forefather of the person in question was from Spain (degree or percentage of Spanish blood is a big deal for some, not as big a deal for others). Hispanic is the relatively 'new' official (in other words government) word to describe anyone who used to be included in the group Latin American, except that Portuguese-speakers (primarily from Brazil) don't like the term, as it implies roots in Spain, not Portugal. All of which leaves the poor indigenous peoples south of the US borders out in the cold, if they don't speak Spanish, don't have any Spanish ancestors, and have to answer US Census Bureau questions. :rolleyes:
  12. Pedro y La Torre Senior Member

    Hauts-de-Seine, France
    English (Ireland)
    This seems as a good a definition to me as any.
  13. timpeac

    timpeac Senior Member

    English (England)
    Purely from the point of view of what the words mean for me as a Brit (and not meaning to get into the rights and wrongs of it) I would only call someone born in Spain "Spanish" and anyone whose origins can be traced back to Spain (including those still there) "hispanic". So if both your parents were from China originally, say, but you have Spanish nationality I would describe you as "Spanish" but not "hispanic". Similarly - before reading this thread it wouldn't have occurred to me to call someone from Brazil "hispanic".

    Just stating the connotations the words have for me.
  14. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    First, you really ought to read the linked threads. They get into this in some detail.
    The way the words Spanish and Hispanic are used in AE defies logic. The way they are "officially" defined is not at all the same as the way they are used by the general populace. If you are looking for "correct" definitions, you may find conflicting ones, and you will run straight into a brick wall if you expect native speaker usage to conform to them.

    Many people in the western U.S. states call any and all people of Latin American descent, whether or not they speak Spanish, Spanish. No, this is not especially logical, but such are the ways of language.

    Let's take the example of one of the few remaining British colonies, the Falkland Islands, otherwise known as Las Islas Malvinas in some Spanish speaking places.
    The residents may call themselves "English people". Now move across the South Atlantic to (the rest of? depending on one's political viewpoint) Argentina. There is a substantial population of native Argentine citizens with two native languages: English and Spanish. Most of these people think of themselves and call themselves Argentines.
    They are descended from Englishmen, and are living in a country that was a colony of Spain, not of England.

    Are they Hispanic? Perhaps, if they emigrate to the U.S. Are they "from England"?
    If one is asking about their family history, yes. Are they "English people"? Perhaps, as some maintain dual citizenship, and send their offspring to England for university education. Are they Spanish-speaking Latin Americans? Yes.

    Repeating your "main question":
    In some places and to some speakers, they are Spanish people.

    Please note carefully (this is directed to any thread participant who might wish to use this thread to promote a political, social, or linguistic viewpoint) that I have described how the terms are used. I have not tried to characterize the actual usage as politically or socially accurate (sometimes it is; sometimes it is not) or logical. Actual usage is confused and confusing.
  15. JamesM

    JamesM à la Mod (English Only)

    I don't think this is quite accurate. It's more likely that the overarching and inaccurate group designation will be "Mexican", not "Spanish", in the western U.S. I say this from a lifetime of living exclusively in the western U.S. :)

    It is more likely to hear "Latino" here rather than "Spanish", but that's covered in other threads.

    There is no clear answer to the use of "hispanic" in the U.S., as cuchuflete said. It's neither logical nor consistent.

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