Notes from Spain and Spanish Forum Learn REAL Spanish now!  

Go Back   Notes from Spain and Spanish Forum > Spain Forum > Moving to Spain and Living in Spain

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 31st December 2007, 10:04 AM   #21
omeyas
Solo chapurreo el espaņol
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Somehwere nice!
Posts: 993
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by richardksa View Post
However, that's all done with now as the Spanish take all of Britain's Cod!!!!!!
And even some of it legally! Here, they are always in the local papers for illegal undersize fish, exceeding quotas, altered log books etc.
One good to come out of it is you cannot give spider crabs (centollos) away here, but the Spanish love them, so they all get sent there. A valuable income for the few local inshore fisherman that are left after being decimated by the EU
A case here, where a Spanish fisherman exceeded his quota by 8,000 percent!
omeyas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 31st December 2007, 01:10 PM   #22
Edith
Pangolin Forero
 
Edith's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Países Bajos
Posts: 3,802
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by virgeved View Post
2. Guantanamo
3. Iraq
Ironically, many people seem to have forgotten about Saddam Hussein's heinous crimes, especially against the Kurds. And not all the killing which goes on in Iraq right now can be blamed on the Americans - Muslims are killing Muslims on a daily basis, even during religious holidays. Almost every day there are suicide attacks on men, women and children near markets, bus stops, hospitals and even mosques. Mostly it's Shiites against Sunnis and vice versa. I'm not trying to justify the war in Iraq but sometimes we fail to see things in perspective...
Edith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 31st December 2007, 05:43 PM   #23
virgeved
Forero
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 33
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beckett View Post
I agree.

@Virgeved...did something happen to you recently that made you want to post about this? You seem really fired up about the topic. Don't worry, in a few years Spain will be griping about China and many Spaniards who formerly mocked the U.S. will be wishing for the so-called good old days when their biggest preoccupation was struggling to learn English. Wait 'til they realize that they'll also need to learn Chinese as well!
Some of my clasmates had a presentation of their work in class...a project about the cooperation of third world countries in their own development, and they showed an anti-american video in which they burned the American flag. I donīt mind a political statement, but it felt pretty personal since Iīm the only American in the class...and it hurt..alot..
But I think the combined facts that I am pretty sensitive and that studying International Relations is a total setup and that for five years I havenīt been able to find any support by making friends from that side of the ocean....really makes it hard sometimes..however I appreciate your comments and I will check out that link!
Thanks...
virgeved is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 8th January 2008, 05:30 PM   #24
Gudes
Forero
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 14
Default A long tradition

As an Spaniard I'd like to point out that Anti-Americanism in Spain has a long history and goes back to the Spanish - American war and the loss of the last Spanish colonies, Cuba and the Philippines. So it's just not a right wing or a left wing thing. On the other hand Spaniards are as ignorant about the USA as Americans are about Spain. But despite this widespread prejudice, my American friends always report having felt welcomed in Spain.
Gudes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2008, 08:04 AM   #25
jonk
Mega Forero
 
jonk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Melbourne
Posts: 260
Default

it seems that being racist towards Americans is one of the last politically acceptable forms of racism in existence. It's fine to be against their policies but I cannot stand the "they're all stupid/fat" arguments...
jonk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2008, 10:17 AM   #26
Beckett
Mega Forero
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 898
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonk View Post
it seems that being racist towards Americans is one of the last politically acceptable forms of racism in existence. It's fine to be against their policies but I cannot stand the "they're all stupid/fat" arguments...
Jonk,
Estadounidense (or "American") isn't a race but a nationality. Therefore it is incorrect to say that racism towards Americans exists. It would be better to use terms like "bias" or "prejudice." There exists a bias against Americans that appears to one of the last politically accepted forms of prejudice....."

And, for the record, I agree with you. I can't stand the "they're all fat and stupid" remarks.

Last edited by ValenciaSon; 11th January 2008 at 12:53 PM.
Beckett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2008, 07:09 PM   #27
Rivkah
Forero
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 6
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by virgeved View Post
Hello,
I was just wondering if any other americans have experienced anti-americanism here in Spain and if they would like to talk about their experiences. I have been living here for 5 years now and have heard just about EVERYTHING! I still donīt know how to handle it sometimes, sometimes I think back to when I didnīt understand what they were saying and long for those times....Since I donīt have any other American friends and my husband and political familiy is Spanish, I donīt get to talk about these problems (although my husband is very supportive)...Any comments are apreciated.
Thank you!
It's funny you should bring up this subject. While I was going to a language school in Madrid this past summer for two weeks I did experience some anti-american/anti-Bushism. During the first week one of my teachers made subtle but obvious jabs at Americans. The comments were usually about our politics or the impressions that americans are spoiled. It was beginning to bother me more each day until the Friday of the first week we were discussing art and other nations (in Spanish of course) when this teacher turned to me and said "You're not a typical American." (whatever that is). The second week we got along great.
A lot of prejudice, on both sides of the ocean, is due to ignorance, maybe one bad experience or, from what a couple of people told me, American movies. As we meet and be-friend people from other countries we can educate each other. And I guess it has to happen one person at a time.
I have to admit being a little embarrassed by some American tourists in Spain and other places. We live very insulated from the opinions of the rest of the world and when we visit we act as if everyone should love us and speak English. But I digress.
The vast majority of Spanish people I've met (I've been there twice so far) were curious about life in the US and treated me as an individual and not a spoiled rotten, war mongering Imperialist.
Rivkah
Rivkah is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2008, 07:55 PM   #28
Liam
Super Forero
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: El Estado de Washington, EEUU
Posts: 150
Default

What's funny, or ironic, or whatever, is that many Americans (myself included) are probably more anti-American in some ways than most Spaniards! At least from the viewpoint of being frustrated, disappointed, sickened, fed up, etc., with many of our citizens, our political maneuverings, our waste of resources, our overpopulation (although it's nothing compared to the developing world), our media, some elements of our culture, etc. And we have even more first-hand knowledge about the country to be upset about, rather than just second-hand stereotypes that your average Spaniard who has never visitied might have.

I am American, and I love my country. But lately, it's been hard for me to say that out loud. But then again, if I were in Spain, and a Spanish person were to tell me the same things about the US, I could imagine myself getting defensive. It's probably similar to the flak that Ben took recently when he posted the things he hates about Spain.

Many Americans feel the way that I do. But most days, we are simply caught up in the struggle of our own lives. We have kids, jobs, bills to pay, etc. All we can do is vote and change our own behavior, and hope that others will do the same. And how about this: All you Europeans have to do is stop driving cars as well, OR, develop a renewable energy source, and we won't have to go fighting wars for oil! Just kidding, I think.
Liam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2008, 09:02 PM   #29
Gudes
Forero
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 14
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Liam View Post
What's funny, or ironic, or whatever, is that many Americans (myself included) are probably more anti-American in some ways than most Spaniards! At least from the viewpoint of being frustrated, disappointed, sickened, fed up, etc., with many of our citizens, our political maneuverings, our waste of resources, our overpopulation (although it's nothing compared to the developing world), our media, some elements of our culture, etc. And we have even more first-hand knowledge about the country to be upset about, rather than just second-hand stereotypes that your average Spaniard who has never visitied might have.

I am American, and I love my country. But lately, it's been hard for me to say that out loud. But then again, if I were in Spain, and a Spanish person were to tell me the same things about the US, I could imagine myself getting defensive. It's probably similar to the flak that Ben took recently when he posted the things he hates about Spain.

Many Americans feel the way that I do. But most days, we are simply caught up in the struggle of our own lives. We have kids, jobs, bills to pay, etc. All we can do is vote and change our own behavior, and hope that others will do the same. And how about this: All you Europeans have to do is stop driving cars as well, OR, develop a renewable energy source, and we won't have to go fighting wars for oil! Just kidding, I think.
I totally agree with you. But most people are guided by stereotypes because they can't deal with the complexity of country as big and as complicated as the USA. They probably don't even know the distance from the East Coast to the West Coast. It could also be a reaction against years of USA perceived arrogance (I should say of some politicians). But this is something probably every country suffers. During the Franco days every Spaniard was probably suspect of being a fascist hillbilly even if they were probably fighting against Franco. You suffer the same fate with Bush and his friends.

I lived in your beautiful state, BTW (Bellevue). Oh... the memories.

Cheers
Gudes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2008, 10:56 PM   #30
Maria S.
Super Forero
 
Maria S.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Oberursel/Ts. in Germany
Posts: 171
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Liam View Post
I am American, and I love my country. But lately, it's been hard for me to say that out loud. But then again, if I were in Spain, and a Spanish person were to tell me the same things about the US, I could imagine myself getting defensive. It's probably similar to the flak that Ben took recently when he posted the things he hates about Spain.
I am glad you mentioned that. I think most of us are guilty of that. It is OK if WE say it, but not if it is coming from an outsider.
I think we all occasionally do that - that is bitch about our own country, but defend it to others.

BTW, I have lived in Washington State for a few years -- that is Spokane (during the Kevin Coe years)
Maria S. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2008, 11:18 PM   #31
virgeved
Forero
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 33
Default

I donīt really mind that much if people criticize the USA....if they have a good point and know the facts behind it, however the most annoying times are when people say silly, rude or just cruel things like..."Americans are stupid right? I mean I heard that they donīt even know where Spain is on the map", or "well, you know, since Americans donīt have any culture" One time a person said.. "oh, youīre American....you guys are REALLY rascist, right?" and I said..."well, unfortunately racism is a problem in many countries, hopefully all of us can start to get over it soon and begin to apreciate our diferences instead of fearing them" and he replied..." yeah, but you Americans are MORE racist than us"

However, I think that alot of anti-americanism in Spain is based soley on ignorance....for most Spaniards...they have heard about the USA all of their lives but have never experienced the country first hand (by having a close friend or family member from there or by living in the country)

Iīve found that here in Europe there are specific roles that each country has to play...and various stereotypes that go with the country...the Germans are cold but on time, the English are uptight (except when they drink) the French are unfriendly and rude, the northern europeans are competative.....etc....there are endless stereotypes for every country....none of them true...of course they do have one thing in common...they think North Americans are very different from them! (the truth is there is no big difference)
virgeved is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th January 2008, 11:59 AM   #32
Juanjo
Lorquista
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: South of England
Posts: 1,137
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by virgeved View Post
I
Iīve found that here in Europe there are specific roles that each country has to play...and various stereotypes that go with the country...
As a philosopher friend once commented on civilisation:"Just ask an Indian,Chinese, Japanese or, for that matter a Frenchman, Brit or German to tell you candidly who they believe to be the most civilized people in the world, and they will all, if they are honest, point at themselves and explain why they are superior to everyone else."

The problem is that each nation will define "civilization" differently and view themselves and other nations through the prism of their own culture e.g the Chinese will look at their millenia-old civilization and deprecate the cultures of the newcomers.

As the old joke goes;

HEAVEN IS WHERE:
The police are British
The mechanics are German
The cooks are French
The lovers are Italian
And the whole thing is organized by the Swiss;

HELL IS WHERE:
The police are German
The cooks are British
The mechanics are French
The lovers are Swiss
And the whole thing is organized by the Italians!




There.... that should upset everbody!

Juanjo
Juanjo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th January 2008, 12:41 PM   #33
Beckett
Mega Forero
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 898
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Juanjo View Post
As a philosopher friend once commented on civilisation:"Just ask an Indian,Chinese, Japanese or, for that matter a Frenchman, Brit or German to tell you candidly who they believe to be the most civilized people in the world, and they will all, if they are honest, point at themselves and explain why they are superior to everyone else."

The problem is that each nation will define "civilization" differently and view themselves and other nations through the prism of their own culture e.g the Chinese will look at their millenia-old civilization and deprecate the cultures of the newcomers.



Juanjo
Funny, I think if you were to ask the typical American what country was the most civilized, they would say England. Good topic for a Gallup poll!
Beckett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th January 2008, 01:44 PM   #34
virgeved
Forero
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 33
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beckett View Post
Funny, I think if you were to ask the typical American what country was the most civilized, they would say England.
Really? I thought everybody always picked Sweden..
virgeved is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th January 2008, 05:16 PM   #35
Pat1
Wanderlust
 
Pat1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Central New York
Posts: 98
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beckett View Post
Funny, I think if you were to ask the typical American what country was the most civilized, they would say England. Good topic for a Gallup poll!
HAHA, Yes! When I was reading the original post, I was thinking "but probably, I would say England", but probably because of the stereotypes (since I've never been there). Weird.
Pat1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th January 2008, 12:03 AM   #36
deecree
Errant in Forolandia
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kobol
Posts: 1,043
Default

Some thoughts I didn't want to spend time tying together is essay form so have just written them as they came to me...

-
For all those who were told they are not the "typical American", it just goes to show the stereotypes they held/hold in their heads about how Americans typically are. What they meant was that you don't match their preconceived notion of what an American is. You should have asked them how many others they have actually met and how you are different from them.
-
I am from Europe, a place where we do make jokes about Americans and a place where we do hold many of those things said in the YouTube video to be true. I laughed when the man said that most Europeans felt that the US was a culture-less gigantic Las Vegas - that is what it often appears to be when you look at it on the surface. But underneath, as people who visited might tell you, you get different kinds of people, traditions, histories, accents, foods and cultures across the vast country - the US in reality is not what it projects on the surface. Even the Vegas parts, such as Taco Bell marketed as Mexican Food, have their own... something.... it is an insight into the country and has value in its own right.
-
I once saw a recipe book. An American Recipe book for sale. The cover and introduction were full of jokes that the US couldn't possibly have national dishes. It was marketed in this joke-like fashion otherwise it wouldn't sell.
And of course the US has national dishes - to the surprise and disgust of my stereotypical preconceived Frenchman. They are the adapted and changed foods brought over by immigrants and that now exist in their own right.
Compare an Italian and an New York pizza.
Boy were those recipes enticing.
-
I think Americans here will be the first to say that... 1. There are failings in their education system, 2. The US has an isolationist culture, 3. Americans know little about the rest of the world. 4. This is not good.
Of course, the rest of us know in detail about many things in the US - their influence in European culture, via TV for example, is strong. To say that they are stupid because some(many?) can't name all of western Europe's capitals is unfair. Its not good and should change but their country is huge and their culture inward-facing(+/-? not important). Ask a Brit to name 5 Greek cities and you'd get a similar response. Are the Brits stupid or do they have more important things to care about?
-
What is bad is when this isolationist attitude is translated into not giving a damn about what the rest of the world thinks and it (whatever it is) being done because it "suits us". What would you think of a neighbour on your street who acted that way?
Would you hate him? Would you be Anti-Your-Neighbour? Would you be justified to feel that way?
-
In Lima, I over-heard an American tourist say that he hadn't seen so many "Spanish people in one place before". Some US-Stereotype fuel if I ever saw any. I couldn't possibly imagine a Canadian or Australian saying anything similar.
-
They say the French are particularly anti-American because of history... all their parts of America were taken from them. None of it being French, the place is obviously monstrous to them, but then so is the rest of the world.
-
The United States would have to do a hell of a lot more bad in this world to ever arrive at a point where they'd be doing more bad than good.
-
deecree is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th January 2008, 09:13 PM   #37
Ben
Hero Forero
 
Ben's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 4,423
Default

Just read this extremely important reflection on attitudes to Americans in Spain and thought I should add it to this thread.
Ben is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th January 2008, 12:25 AM   #38
virgeved
Forero
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 33
Default Iīm better off not telling them

I want to say why I originally posted this question because sometimes I think I might give the impression that Iīm angry about the things people say or that Iīm really sensitive but the truth is I just feel really lonely and sad, because I have lived in Spain for 5 years...I have family here and I feel Spanish/North American or North American/Spanish...in my home I speak Spanish and go to a Spanish university and the first thing I ever learned how to cook well was a spanish tortilla in the kitchen of my mother-in-law. But I grew up in Miami...okay, estilo Cubano but with a very important USA flair.

I get sad because I notice the difference in that incredably important moment when I am asked... "de donde eres?" And this is where I hold my breath because...while most people wonīt say anything, I almost always see a change in their faces, and I know that they think of me differently than they did before, and I know from experience that I could spend hours talking to them about all of their problems with my country and it wonīt be enough, and it just makes me want to cry.
virgeved is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th January 2008, 01:50 AM   #39
Liam
Super Forero
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: El Estado de Washington, EEUU
Posts: 150
Default

And that's why, when in Europe, when I am asked, "where are you from", I put on the fake Canadian accent and say, "Vancouver, eh!" It saves everyone a lot of trouble. After all, I don't want them thinking I am a racist, ignorant American, or they might think that I am the type of person who is closed minded, and the type of person who judges all citizens of one particular country as being the same!
Liam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th January 2008, 02:22 AM   #40
Carlos
Forero
 
Carlos's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 12
Default

Hey Virgeved, That was very heartfelt. I too have had many bad days in Spain, along with so many fantastic ones. I’m afraid the whole “American in Spain” thing has turned into a small obsession with me (ok maybe a big one). Mostly because Spain is so important to me that it is difficult to be seen as a pariah, as you described.

Now, I just try to get them laughing. They say where are you from? I say something like, “Soy un Americano de mierda”! They love that. I can only go up from there!
Carlos is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks
Learn REAL Spanish now!

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 08:03 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.