1. hirondelled'hiver

    hirondelled'hiver Senior Member

    Comment traduire cette expression de surprise?
    Est-ce que c'est très slang? Très vulgaire? Connoté jeune, ou ethnique???
    Quelqu'un en connaît l'origine?

    Un peu comme "Ouach!" ?
  2. WillHelpIfICan Senior Member

    English - UK
    Slang for Wow! Blood hell! etc

    See slang diccos for examples
  3. Micia93

    Micia93 Senior Member

    in the center of France
    quelque chose qui correspondrait à notre "Putain !" ?
  4. Joyeux Drille Member

    Je ne suis pas anglophone, mais "yowza" ne sonne pas vulgaire à mes oreilles. Ce mot sonne plutôt comme étant populaire, dans le sens du manque de raffinement, d'une grande familiarité. C'est une exclamation d'entrain ou de surprise positive.

    J'ai traduit, dans le cas du texte sur lequel je travaille, par "Oh que si!". Mais j'aurais tout aussi bien pu mettre "là tu parles!" ou encore "génial!".
  5. guitarpop Member

    American English
    Yowza is more something you say to an incredibly stunning woman (though I don't see why it couldn't be said to/about a man as well)...it's not vulgar but it's certainly familier.
  6. pointvirgule

    pointvirgule Senior Member

    Mtl, QC
    langue française
    Yowzah! est à l'origine une déformation de yes sir! Donc pas plus vulgaire que mazette !, par exemple.
  7. bh7 Senior Member

    Limestone City
    Canada; English
    Yes, it goes back to the minstrel shows in which white actors dressed up as and mimicked the behaviour of negroes.
    In my experience, not a word often heard nowadays. In fact, the last time I did hear it was in the film "They Shoot Horses, Don't They" about a depression-era marathon dance competition. The emcee in the film tries to fire up the flagging dancers with his 'yowza, yowza, yowza!' calls.
  8. guitarpop Member

    American English
    Do you have a source other than urban dictionary for the minstrel claim? The word is still semi-frequently used in the U.S., though probably more by characters on television than in real life. If you Google image search the word you'll find plenty of pictures of half-naked women (security settings permitting).
  9. bh7 Senior Member

    Limestone City
    Canada; English
    I have not been able to find a reliable source for the origin of yowza/yowzah/yowser/yowser. Tracing the word back historically, I get stuck in the 1920s. A U.S. band leader and radio personality by the name of Ben Bernie is said to have picked up the word from old minstrel shows and then popularised it and made it his trademark. The word was in common use by the early 1930s and appears in the Oxford English dictionary as
    "(Colloq. (orig. & chiefly US) An exclamation of enthusiastic approval or affirmation. 1932 Los Angeles Times 6 Nov. 'Yowzah, Griffith spoiled California's afternoon all in the space of two minutes' "

    There is general agreement that the word is a corrupt version of "Yes, sir!", either imitating or mocking the plantation negro way of speaking, which makes its earlier use in minstrelsy plausible, but doesn't prove it.

    The phrase "Yowza, yowza" or "Yowsa, yowza, yowza" (variously spelt) later became a popular chant for MCs at dance marathons in the early half of the 20th century, as is depicted in the 1969 movie "They Shoot Horses, Don't They". The expression is also used in at least one broadway musical.


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