Spanish

Spanish is spoken by more than 400 million people around the world, and it is the primary language of 332 million people (Spanish language, 2004). It is the official language of almost all of Latin America and of Spain. It is also widely spoken in the U.S., Canada, and the Philippines. In the United States alone, there are 39 million people of Hispanic origin (Grow, 2004, p. 60) (many of whom call themselves Latinos) and 78% of them speak Spanish (Grow, 2004, p. 62).

Modern Spanish originates with Vulgar Latin, that is, Classical Latin modified by the various autochthonous languages of the Iberian Peninsula. In the 8th century AD, the Moorish conquest of Spain infused Vulgar Latin with Arabic words. During the 13th century, due to the political domination of the Kingdom of Castile over other regions, and thanks to the efforts of king Alfonso X--the dialect of Castile, known as Castilian (castellano) spread across Spain. In the 15th century, the Moors were expelled from the Peninsula, and Castilian was declared the official language of Spain. The eight century long occupation by the Moors resulted in the incorporation of over 4000 words of Arabic origin, making Arabic the second most important linguistic influence on Spanish after Latin (Lapesa, 1980, p. 133). In the south of the country, the Andalusian dialect coexisted with Castilian. Starting in 1492, the expedition ships destined to the New World departed from the southern ports, and most of the crew members hailed from the south as well. Therefore, both Castilian and Andalusian were exported to the Americas.

Gradually, words from the autochthonous peoples of the Americas became part of the vocabulary of the Spanish speakers on this side of the Atlantic. This is why Latin American Spanish differs somewhat from European Spanish.

Spain lost all of its American colonies between 1810 and 1825 (with the exception of Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines), but the legacy of the language remained. Nowadays, Spanish is the official language of nineteen nations in North, Central, and South America.

Language Trivia: Spanish words of non-European origin

  • From Quechua (the language of the Incas, an official language of Peru): condor, llama
  • From Guaraní (an official language of Paraguay): jaguar, tapioca
  • From Araucanian (still spoken in parts of Chile and Argentina): Chile ("Land's End")
  • From Náhuatl (the language of the Aztecs): chocolate, tomate
  • From Taíno (the language of the people of the Caribbean): guayaba, guanábano
  • From Mayan (the language of the Mayas): cigarro
  • From Arabic: alcohol, álgebra, azúcar, algodón, alfalfa, azul

Works Cited

"Spanish Language & History," ALS International, 31 January 2004
http://www.alsintl.com/languages/spanish.htm.
Grow, Brian. "Hispanic Nation." Business Week 15 March 2004: 59-70.
Lapesa, Rafael. Historia de la lengua española. 9th ed. Madrid: Gredos, 1980.

Instructors

Dr. Hiroko Yamashita
Chair of MLC, Paul & Francena Miller Chair in International Education, Professor of Japanese
Language taught:
Japanese
Office: EAS-3239
Phone number:
585-475-6074
Afrah Alfatli
Adjunct Professor of Arabic
Language taught:
Arabic
Office: 1-3219
Phone number:
585.475.2903
Natala Arapov
Natalya Arapov
Adjunct Professor of Russian
Language taught:
Russian
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-3219
Godys Argmengot
Godys Argmengot
Lecturer of Spanish
Language taught:
Spanish
Office: EAS-3236
Phone number:
585-475-4427
Dr. Sara Armengot
Dr. Sara Armengot
Associate Professor of Spanish
Language taught:
Spanish
Office: EAS-3223
Phone number:
585-475-4343
Johannes Bockwoldt
Adjunct Professor of German
Language taught:
German
Office: G. Eastman Hall Rm. 3219
Phone number:
585-475-2903
Janis Bruns
Adjunct Professor of German
Language taught:
German
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-2903
Roberto Camps
Adjunct Professor of Spanish
Language taught:
Spanish
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-2903
Dr. Philippe Chavasse
French Program Coordinator
Language taught:
French
Office: EAS-3233
Phone number:
585-475-3156
Dr. Zhong Chen
Assistant Professor of Chinese
Language taught:
Chinese
Office: EAS-3179
Phone number:
585-475-6917
Dr. Elisabetta D'Amanda
Senior Lecturer of Italian, Italian Pogram Coordinator
Language taught:
Italian
Office: EAS-3152
Phone number:
Birgit Deir
Adjunct Professor of German
Language taught:
German
Office: G. Eastman Hall Rm. 3219
Phone number:
585-475-4427
Nadia Eldabh
Adjunct Professor of Russian
Language taught:
Arabic
Office: EAS (Building 1) Room 3219
Phone number:
475-2903
Dr. Diane J. Forbes
Dr. Diane J. Forbes
Associate Professor Spanish, Spanish Program Coordinator
Language taught:
Spanish
Office: EAS-3197
Phone number:
585-475-6765
Francia Gonzalez
Francia Gonzalez
Adjunct Professor of Spanish
Language taught:
Spanish
Office: EAS-3211
Phone number:
475-2903
Vincent Incardona
Systems Administrator
Office: EAS-3241/ EAS-3263
Phone number:
585-475-7880
Wibke Klapetzky
Adjunct Professor of German
Language taught:
German
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-2903
Alexandra Kuzmich
Adjunct Professor of French
Language taught:
French
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585.475.2903
Kévin Le Blévec
Visiting Lecturer of French/Technology Specialist
Language taught:
French
Office: EAS-3260
Phone number:
585-475-7234
Miho Lee
Miho Lee
Language taught:
Japanese
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-4427
Yu Fang Liu
Adjunct Professor of Chinese
Language taught:
Chinese
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-2903
Yukiko Maru
Yukiko Maru
Senior Lecturer of Japanese, Japanese Program Coordinator
Language taught:
Japanese
Office: EAS-3329
Phone number:
585-475-4558
Daniela Morschbacher
SILP Adjunct Professor of Portuguese
Language taught:
Portuguese
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
dxmgsl@rit.edu
Masako Murakami
Masako Murakami
Senior Lecturer of Japanese, Japanese Program Coordinator
Language taught:
Japanese
Office: EAS-3158
Phone number:
585-475-4418
Ping H. Pian
Adjunct Professor of Chinese
Language taught:
Chinese
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-2903
Rosalba Pisaturo
Adjunct Professor of Italian, Adjunct Professor of Spanish
Language taught:
Italian, Spanish
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-4427
Linda Rossiter
Modern Langues and Cultures Sr. Staff Assistant
Office: EAS-3225
Phone number:
585-475-2018
Yolanta Samek
Adjunct Professor of French
Language taught:
French
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-3219
Dr. Ulrike Stroszeck
Dr. Ulrike Stroszeck
Senior Lecturer of German, German Program Coordinator
Language taught:
German
Office: EAS-3156
Phone number:
585-475-2921
Marina Sweany
Adjunct Professor of Russian
Language taught:
Russian
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-4427
Yuki Taguchi
Adjunct Professor of Japanese
Language taught:
Japanese
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-4427
Emiko Takai
Adjunct Professor of Japanese
Language taught:
Japanese
Office: G. Eastman Hall Rm. 3219
Phone number:
585-475-4427
Guoming Tian
Dr. Guoming Tian
Adjunct Professor of Chinese
Language taught:
Chinese
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-2903
Dr. Marie-Josephe Van Vliet
Dr. Marie-Josephe Van Vliet
Adjunct Professor of French
Language taught:
French
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-2903
Mihoko Wakabayashi
Mihoko Wakabayashi
Adjunct Professor of Japanese
Language taught:
Japanese
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
585-475-4427
Ai-ze Wang
Adjunct Professor of Chinese
Language taught:
Chinese
Office: EAS-3211
Phone number:
475-2903
Wilma Wierenga
Associate Professor Emeritus
Language taught:
German
Phone number:
Ida Wilder
Ida Wilder
Adjunct Professor of Italian
Language taught:
Italian
Office: EAS-3219
Phone number:
58-5475-4427

Conversation Table

The MLC Department offers weekly opportunities to practice conversations in specific languages with other students. Schedule will be posted soon. Please check back. 

Tutoring

The MLC Department offers free tutoring opportunities for students two times a week for one hour.

Tutor : Samuel

Mondays, 5pm-6pm in EAS 3263

Wednesdays, 2pm-3pm in EAS 3181

Resources

Variety Music Maps Weather General info Newspapers Dictionary TV schedule

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