Linguistic self-hate

David Millán notes that while autoodiar appears in neither the Spanish nor the Catalan standard dictionaries, it forms part of the rhetoric of Catalan nationalism. Autoômnibus is present in the above works, but autoodio is of course self-hate rather than a pathological dislike of cars. I haven’t checked, but I suspect that the word and the concept entered Catalan via Spanish, as is so often the case.

As far as I know there has been no study of linguistic self-hate among socially-climbing Spanish speakers such as José Montilla in Catalonia, but there’s a fairly substantial literature in the States, the translation and popularisation of some of which would make profitable reading for local ethnocrats.

Glenn A Martínez makes the interesting suggestion of using jerigonza to help students investigate and understand the social function of dialects. The Wikipedia entry quotes some sonically beautiful examples of this game involving the alteration on a systematic basis of words in order to produce what initially sounds like nonsense, “Hola, ¿cómo estás hoy día?” becoming, for example, “hopolapa copomopo epestapas hopoy dipiapa.”

This is reminiscent of the popular misconception that Catalan is simply Spanish with certain letters changed, or vice versa. Anyone who thinks it is related to the transcription of, for example, English words in the Spanish manner is really getting a bit jevi, con jota.

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