Tess Rafferty voices what we are thinking but are afraid to say

Tess Rafferty

I am so damn tired of trying to see it from the other side and trying to express nuance while they paint our candidates with the broadest of hateful brushes.  I’m tired of pretending that it is somehow reasonable to teach creationism in public schools with my tax dollars while you tell me that two same sex people who love each other getting married somehow threatens your marriage.  If you voted for Trump, I am tired of trying to see things your way while you sit in your “holier than thou” churches/white power meet-ups, refusing to see things mine.

Did I just lump you in with white supremacists?  No, you did that to yourselves.  You voted for the same candidate as the KKK.  You voted for the candidate endorsed by the KKK.  For the rest of your life you have to know to know that you voted the same way as the KKK.  Does that feel good to you?  Here’s a hint: it really shouldn’t, especially if you call yourself a Christian.

I’m tired of pussy-footing around what offends your morals while couching what offends mine, because racism, homophobia, misogyny and xenophobia offend mine.  Let me say it right here: if you voted for Trump, I do think you are a racist, I do think you’re homophobic, I do think you’re a misogynist.  Racism and homophobia and misogyny are all a spectrum, and you’re on it.  Don’t like getting painted with the broad brush of racism?  Now you know how if feels when you are told you want to rip a baby out of a mother’s womb at 9 months, when that’s not what happens, that’s never what happens.  I tried to be polite, but now I just don’t give a damn because, let’s be honest, we don’t live in polite America any more.  We live in “grab ‘em by the pussy” America now. So, thank you for that.  Being polite was exhausting.

And don’t come at me with how you just didn’t like Hillary.  This was bigger than Hillary.  This wasn’t your typical “I just want lower taxes and smaller government” Republican.  We had Germans warning us that this guy was scary.  But still you cry “Emails!” or “Benghazi!” or “That voice!”.  And still there are mountains of evidence that nothing you think Hillary did was that serious or even true.  Some of the finest minds in the world have drawn graphs and charts to prove that none of these “crimes” were even committed and you are either too dumb or too willfully ignorant to care.

And if you really cared about crimes, you would care about any of the three pending against your candidate.  Take your pick.  I’d start with the rape of a 13 year old girl, but if you voted for Trump, you probably don’t care what happens to women.  It doesn’t matter anyway. She received so many death threats from your political peers that she dropped the charges.  But ask me again why more women don’t come forward.

And speaking of  smaller government and lower taxes, enjoy not getting mine.  If Trump actually does what he says he is going to do, then your petty, backwards state and your small, angry towns can pay for your own schools to not educate your children.  I live in California, the largest economy in the states, and the 6th largest in the world.  We’ll be fine.  But have fun affording all those children your health insurance won’t pay for your birth control to prevent.  I’m just kidding, you’re not going to have insurance.  Won’t that be just great again.  The truth is that, for those of us on this side, there is no “when all this is over”.    Things are just getting started.  You think last Wednesday was bad, you don’t know what bad is yet.  This isn’t something you get over, this is something you endure.  You’re going to face a tax on every right we fought the last 60 years  to gain.  The deck is so stacked against us, we may not win.  The best we can hope for is gridlock.  And that’s just nationally.  Internationally, who the fuck knows what this lunatic is going to do?  And the only think worse that this guy is  the guy is just one angry tweet away from the presidency, Mike Pence, advocate for gay conversion therapy and mandatory funerals for fetuses.  So now’s the time you might want to see things from my side, because if we are all going to have to be friends after this, imagine me having to be polite and respect your vote to take away my rights and freedoms and those of my friends while we fight desperately to hang on to them, because that is what we did.

Watch the entire speech: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25RJMD754XA

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El subjuntivo

The ideal Presentation of the Subjunctive Mood in Spanish to English Speaking Students

Claire Huttlinger

LSPA 517

Michael S. Guzman

November 27th, 2016

It is strangely comforting to read the academic theories regarding the use of the subjunctive mood in Spanish and English. That particular topic often trips me up in my usage in Spanish, and presents a challenge when I teach.  I focus on the teaching of youngsters, anywhere from Kindergarten to tenth grade. At the risk of sounding like an “old fogie” I believe that the study of the subjunctive mood is well placed toward the end of the basic grammatical sequence for students with L1 English.  We all do best beginning with the familiar, and cognitively recognizing the subjunctive mood is not familiar to native English speakers.  Remember that the concept of a conjugation is, itself, a novelty to most students who are acquiring a new language for the first time, as is the concept of a more formal version of the second person subjects. Once a foundation of familiarity is established, e.g., the ideas of conjugation, of a formal version of the second person, of variable word order, then it is time to take on the subjunctive.  Students should see and use Spanish as a true mode of communication, just as Helen Keller had to realize that words have meaning that can express her thoughts.  Once this relationship is established, students can take on more complicated challenges to their understanding of language.

Having stated that, I do believe that there are several special cases that could be introduced quite early on that allow for some introduction to subjunctive structures and situations without addressing the subjunctive mood as a whole.  These are commands and special phrases: they are easy to teach, entertaining to use in class, and can cover a great deal of vocabulary.  Since students need to grapple with the idea of formal/informal second person subjects and it is not a great leap to explain that there are two types of commands: formal and informal, and because the command does not fall into the conjugation chart, there is no need to explain exactly why it is diverges from that pattern.  The endless opportunities to apply these words in regular practice will allow them to become familiar with them in little time:

Commands make wonderful exclamations, elements in a dialogue, classroom tools: ¡Tome, Ud.!, ¡Estudien!, ¡Vengan Uds.!

… and common phrases from Spanish can be peppered throughout class interactions:

¡No vengas con chorradas!  Que tengas buen fin de semana.

The more focused children will soon see patterns, although there is no need to teach it explicitly for the time being. 

Therefore, in my ideal classroom, the subjunctive is not being taught explicitly until the students are comfortable conjugating most verbs in the present, past (although aspect may not yet be entirely clear), and future.  I go quite a bit further into my ideal approach to the subjunctive at the end of this essay, for those who are interested.*

As a teacher of a wide variety of children, and as a concrete thinker, I am drawn to formulaic patterns as a foundation, using the basic system as a life raft onto which students may climb when they are confused by the sea of nuances.  Of course the beauty of language is in the way speakers and writers launch their ideas off of this foundation. Both Bull** and Bolinger provide the most comprehensive and logical approaches to the shades of the subjunctive, in my opinion.  The possibilities should be corralled into clear categories, all of which defer to the idea of an action, be it real or imagined, desired or prohibited.   Goldin theorized that the subjunctive can express an evaluation of an event to which it is linked by a preposition, and there needs to be a supposition that pushes the evaluation one way or the other: Es interesante que digas eso as opposed to Es seguro que lo perdió.

Once students are comfortable with the morphology of both tenses of the mood, and with the iron-clad situations of usage, it is important for students to see the subjunctive in use and to begin to recognize the extra-systemic uses and the potential for gray area, especially in Spanish language literature.  For example, it would be fun to expose students to a section from El Quixote, just to allow them to get a taste:

¡Oh buen hermano mío, y quién supiera agora dónde estabas; que yo te fuera a buscar y a librar de tus trabajos, aunque fuera a costa de los míos! ¡Oh, quién llevara nuevas a nuestro viejo padre de que tenías vida, aunque estuvieras en las mazmorras más escondidas de Berbería; que de allí te sacaran sus riquezas, las de mi hermano y las mías!

—Cervantes,Miguel de, El ingenioso hidalgo Don Quijote de La Mancha, Cap. 42

This passage transmits the words of a nobleman whose brother has just returned from years of enemy captivity, and who declares what he wishes he could have done for his brother to save him, but couldn’t.  Grammatically, the conditional would suffice for many of the verbs (Yo te habría ido a buscar), the author is stressing the pain and desperation that the brother is feeling.  Despite the obvious factor that literature written in the seventeenth century was more formal overall, one should also be aware that Cervantes enjoyed using double-meanings, and may be distancing the speaker’s words from reality for other reasons

Bull´s appreciation for the uses of the subjunctive clearly establishes the need for it.  It enhances communication by adding implicit information about the opinions, preferences or concerns of the speaker, or about the degree realistic truth in expression.  The example Abre el grifo y sale el agua, vs Abre el grifo para que salga el agua, delineates the difference between the description of a tool and the value of a tool: the faucet delivers water, in the first case, and we wanted the water, and the faucet helped us get it.  Bolinger makes it clear that the subjunctive can be switched in and out depending on the speaker´s expectations:  Creo….que su país no esté bien informado…  Goldin reminds us that there is a range of value in an expression concerning its veracity, and the subjunctive allows us to express  the speaker´s supposition of that variance: Esquiaríamos si nevara. The option of using the subjunctive offers the speaker a level of control over how the information is perceived.

According to Whitley (SEC), the examples of subjunctive morphology in English are so few and insignificant that they are not useful pedagogically as a comparison to its meaning and morphology in Spanish.  I disagree.  I believe that, anemic as they are, examples of the subjunctive in English are eye-openers for native English speakers, and we are fortunate that they exist.  By pointing out expressions such as as it were or truth be told, the teacher immediately validates further discussion of the subjunctive mood.  Beyond that, however, the comparison between English and Spanish mood does fall short:  the relative rigidity of English verb syntax (not to say that choices are limited, but that word order is more strict) channels meaning and provides for any shift in mood in a subordinate clause using would (I wish you wouldn’t go) or should (I should think not) or a construction using an infinitive: We need you to stay.  An interesting switch in English involves the use of an impersonal subject (1) as opposed to a personal (2) one in the independent clause in some cases, for example with advise

  1. It is advisable that you leave immediately.

(2) I advise you to leave immediately.

The intricacies of the subjunctive moods in English and Spanish lack symmetry, and to play them off one another, if the goal is to teach the subjunctive mood to native English speakers efficiently, is cumbersome and impractical.  It is far more useful to teach the subjunctive as the enhanced form of communication that it is.  As a topic of advanced theory, on the other hand, it is interesting to corral the English structures that express this complexity and compare them to their Spanish counterparts.  As we have seen in the reading, however, experts do not agree on exactly how to do this. 

The morphology used to construct the Spanish subjunctive mood is, it itself, evidence that we are moving to another level, a different reality.  Everything is switched, as if we were entering a parallel universe: everything is the same and different.  It is important for students to be able to use the present, past, and, only superficially, the conditional tenses and aspects in the indicative mood before embarking on any formal treatment of the subjunctive.  Any in-depth understanding of the subjunctive mood in Spanish will require that students take a good look at English first.  In the present tense we use complex constructs that are considered quite formal:   I work so that you might study is the most accurate expression that translates Yo trabajo para que tú estudies, however, this will often be expressed as : I work so that you can study.  The focus of the meaning is on the work’s allowing for the study.  In the more modern version in English, you can study puts the focus on the study with the assumption that it is actually happening.  The segues well into the past tense:  I worked so that you could study falls short, in my opinion, of relating the effort made to allow for the study.  I worked so that you might study is, as before, a bit archaic, whereas I worked to allow you to study is probably just right.  In English you need to add some umph to achieve equity. 

The conditional with if is, in principle, quite easily transferred from English to Spanish:  They would travel if they had money translates as: Ellos viajarían si tuvieran dinero.  There is no question that they don’t have the money, so the use of the subjunctive in Spanish in the dependent clause is clear, and this is expressed in English using the past tense of have (even though it refers to the present).  In the past tense, the otherwise simple morphology becomes complicated due to frequent usage and generations of errors.  English speakers on the American continent tend to say:  If they would have (instead of had) had the money, they would have traveled last summer, while Spanish speakers, at least in Spain, use a surprisingly symmetrical error :  Si hubieran tenido tenido el dinero, hubieran (instead of habrían) viajado el verano pasado.

The theory of language must at all times brush up against the evolving usage by many large groups of people of different cultures that are widely divided geographically.  This effect in modern times is not completely undermined, but in some ways enhanced, by lighting-paced internet communication.   The complexity of each language empowers its speakers within each culture, and the subjunctive mood in Spanish offers its speakers a tool of expression that deals in temperatures of meaning in a way that English can address in a variety of ways, sometimes using a type of patchwork.  Exactly why we choose our words from the web of possibilities continues to feed academics with sometimes opposing theories while it continues to bind the humans who perpetuate the systems.


Further thoughts on teaching the subjunctive….

In my ideal classroom, the subjunctive is not taught explicitly until the students are comfortable conjugating most verbs in the present, past (although aspect may not be entirely clear), and future. 

Once it is time, I sincerely believe in beginning with the most simple explanation, the iron-clad systemic model, and building complexity from there. Also, it is important to cash in on any familiarity with the subjunctive that already exists.  Thus, one could begin evoking the formal commands, which they memorized when learning the present tense:

¡Hable! Here, we used and -ER ending for an -AR verb.   Why?

Abra la puerta…here we switched again, what is the pattern?  Students are already familiar with the morphology of stem-changing verbs and first-person-irregulars, so, although there will be confused flareups for sure, for the most part that hurdle is behind you.

The first assignment would be to offer the class a text containing several formal commands: they are to identify and give the infinitive form of each one.  Next, give them 4 minutes to look at the verbs and the infinitives and come up with an explanation of the morphology.  Some students will have already been thinking of it, others will develop pieces of it on their own, and still others will be very curious by the end of the four minutes, and will be very attentive and grateful once is explained!

This is where you get the class teaching itself and together they see the new language as a puzzle that actually has final image, and each lesson adds a piece to the puzzle.  You have sidestepped a great deal of the frustration often associated with language learning, and you have the students feeling capable of taking on the complex task that is ahead of them. Next, the morphology is explicitly laid out:

Start with the infinitive:  Hablar

  1. Take the first person present tense form:  hablo
  2. Remove the ending and keep the stem: habl

Now you have a “new stem”. (This extra step in finding the stem is only necessary because of some verbs.) As always, the key is to build on familiarity.  Students understand the concept of a verb stem from their first experiences in conjugation.  The next step is to conjugate the subjunctive stem.  As a mental pushpin in the minds of the students, I always add the word que to the conjugation chart.  The students themselves may or may not drop it, but the option is there:

-AR verbs:  -ER/-IR verbs:

que yo hable etc        que yo beba etc.

Stop here and put it to use.  Have students go over the collection of phrases and sayings that they have heard “casually” in class without understanding the grammar to this point:

¡No vengas con charradas!

Dios te bendiga.

En martes ni te cases ni te embarques.


Que te vaya bien.

Que tengas buen fin de semana.

No hay mal que por bien no venga.

Here is your chance to present the sense of the subjunctive: what do these verbs have in common?  They all describe something that perhaps shouldn’t happen, or perhaps we hope for, but in any case is not actually happening.  The action is just an idea.  You have started simple, and each lesson branches out from there, always basing the conjectures on as much genuine usage as possible.  Here is where the methodological approach and the experiential approach intersect.

Since the first job is to make the morphology second-nature to the learners, we will apply the usage often and with ease, beginning with the most clearly orchestrated situations:

Mamá dice que tú…

No creo que Ernesto…

Yo quiero que nosotros…

Es importante que el gobierno…

Again, give lots of examples and have the class fill them in and then spend 4-5 minutes trying to find patterns.  Students can write the patterns they find on the board or add to a list of notes on a bulletin board.  The patterns they find should stay put for the following classes and each one should be supported or debunked as the subjunctive is practiced and new uses are explained.

This is a good time to re-visit the commands.  Have students compare the various forms of the command to the subjunctive constructions and identify which follow the indicative and which adhere to subjunctive morphology.  This discussion, alone, can touch on the very core of the “need” for a subjunctive:  Why in the formal?  Why always in the negative?  If it is essentially the same command, how does the meaning vary?  How many subjects are really involved?

It is crucial to offer a clear systemic option to students as a life raft to climb onto when they are confused. Several  iron-clad uses of subjunctive should be put forth (a list from any textbook will do):

Es necesario que…, Está prohibido que.., Quizás…, Tal vez…, Para que…

One must pepper the examples with phrases using que that are clearly not subjunctives:

¡Que me voy!

Creo que el nuevo profesor es maravilloso.

Esto is lo que yo tengo.

Este libro que leo es interesante.

Then build on to the concrete cases such as doubt (No creo que venga el tío Ignacio a la fiesta.), suggestion (Es mejor que gane el candidato más experiencia.), time limits (Comeremos cuando llegues a casa.), desired characteristics (Busco un trabajador que sepa hablar idiomas), etc.  (One realistic way to drill this last use is to find a list of job offers on the internet or in a newspaper, and have students transfer the list of requirements into sentences with two subjects.)

Continue to contrast with similar situations that do not require the subjunctive:

Voy a comprar el nuevo móvil que tiene G5.

Me voy a casar con una mujer que tiene m

Siempre comemos cuando Fernando llega a casa.

Los niños se quedan jugando hasta que empieza a llover

As soon as possible, students should start to create phrases, dialogues and texts using the subjunctive.  Start by having them complete text or dialogue with gaps, and later initiate their own writing.  Later, move into other verbal aspects in a natural manner, reminding students that it all works according to the same rules, it is just a matter of remembering which verb is being conjugated:

He pedido que me transfieran a una ciudad grande.

Espero que estés estudiando mucho.

The next step is to introduce the past subjunctive:  this will pop up on its own as students create their own texts, and they will be eager to learn it so as not to be limited by the present tense.  The good news is there are no new concepts:  just alterations to the familiar steps:

Start with the infinitive:  Hablar

  1. Find the third person plural form of the verb in the preterite: Hablaron
  2. Remove the -ON at the end.  Hablar—

You now have a new stem.  Conjugate with the same morphemes you used to conjugate the present subjunctive:  Que yo hablara, etc.

In my classes, we study a song from the Sr. Wooly website called Los quehaceres, and this song drills two phrases using he following:  tengo que and quisiera.  So students are familiar at least with that form.  The students have already covered the conditional in a very superficial way, so you don’t have to introduce that now.   You can use it to launch the teaching of the past tense of the subjunctive mood:

Yo sería rico si tuviera mucho dinero.

Ella estaría en Florida si tuviera su mejor deseo.

** I refer throughout the essay to the theorists below as cited in Whitley, Stanley M, Spanish/English Contrasts, 2002:

Bull, William

Bolinger, Dwight

Goldin, Mark

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Chicken Story

A CHICKEN STORY    (Versión en español en vías de desarrollo)

ChickensSmallerI thought it was Cresty, but I was never sure because she looked just like the other white one. There was no doubt, however, that she was immobile. Jellybean was standing over her, almost as if she expected the chicken to rise and keep up the chase that had surely led to this disaster. Jellybean was the 9 month old lab, the culmination of six months of searching through shelters and foster homes, filling out online rescue dog applications, repeating my pet owner history, as if any of it could be verified. Jellybean was the prize worth the search. Smart, gentle, friendly, calm for a puppy, but alert and engaged. She’d sat so lovingly with Jodi, her owner-to-be, on the college track field, ignoring the chaos of the rescue pet fair, of homeless dogs, cats, and parrots, of festive young volunteers, of curious pet lovers. It was our first step, my daughter Jodi’s and mine, in the process of acquiring her a companion and protector, a service dog for her anxiety.

When Jellybean first ran out into our large, fenced-in yard, we did not dare let the chickens out. After weeks of controlled introductions, tugging leashes, flailing, constrained birds (“No! Come! Leave it!” “Good, walk away, yes…” ), Jellybean was getting the picture fast. (OK. They are not play toys, and they are not food.) She chased them, as our older dogs did, just enough to make them flap and take off, just to keep them on their… claws. I felt we had reached nirvana the day I found not only Jellybean, the other two dogs and the chickens calmly strolling the yard together, but also the neighbor cat, “Munchie”, who ran off when he saw me, apparently having been part of the bucolic scene. All was well, and I relaxed.

That was why I was so shocked at the carnage I saw through the kitchen window: the beautiful, white chicken, splayed stomach-down on the grass surrounded by her own feathers, stained with her own blood. I ran out for a closer look. Pushing Jellybean aside, I saw that the damage was to the neck. It was stripped of feathers and even some skin. I could detect the vertebrae. She was limp. But then the worst became evident: her eye was blinking. She was alive. Now what. I had always thought I would learn to “process” a chicken, why not start now? I imagined myself wielding the axe over the terrified animal, with my poor aim, more blood, the dogs standing by, curious… I thought better of it. My friend Manuel had, from the time he was a boy in a tin-roofed home in the mountains of Nicaragua, turned countless fluffy friends into dinner, so I called him.

Thankful for his promise to hurry over and make the dying chicken disappear, I covered her frame, locked the surviving fowl in the coop, and went off to pick up the kids. The kids. What would I tell them? Nothing. We would arrive home under a curtain of darkness, they would not notice the missing hen until tomorrow, and I would plead ignorance. In fact, I hadn’t actually seen what had happened. Is it possible that Jellybean was just a concerned witness? Maybe. The neighbor cat could have been the turncoat, or perhaps a hawk had… Yes, that would be my story: a hawk. We needed to preserve at all costs the bond between Jellybean and Jodi, so when they found the feathers in the yard the next day, I reminded my trusting girls that the hawks always go for the white ones. I was surprised at their calm acceptance. Perhaps they were starting to absorb my admonitions that the beloved chickens would some day be food for someone. Perhaps the first fatal chicken attack, several months prior, by a fisher or raccoon, had immunized the girls. For whatever reason, they were only mildly perturbed. In the meantime, I kept the chickens in their pen and secretly took Jellybean back to the drawing board on chicken tolerance training.

It was not unusual for Manuel to arrive unannounced. He often drops off scrap wood that he recycles for our projects, he checks on the chickens, and comes in for a chat. So when he appeared in his huge truck on a Saturday morning two weeks after removing my chicken, neither my wife, Doreen, nor I paid attention as he walked to the pen. He waited until I came outside, and said, “Look in the pen”.

I rolled my eyes, “If you brought me more chickens, you are going to have to help me enlarge the coop!”

“Just look,” he said.

I couldn’t believe my eyes. Cresty peered at me from behind the fence with the jerky head movements of a healthy hen. “She was as good as dead!” Was all I could say, “I thought you ate her!”

Doreen remembered her Spanish vocabulary, “Es un milagro!”

Manuel beamed, “I lifted her head and fed her a few times a day, and here she is. I could never eat her now that I have cured her.” He went on to say that she had stopped laying only briefly, and resumed laying daily even though she could barely sit up. Now she was making the rounds of the pen, greeting her feathered family, clucking and pecking.

The girls forgave me for lying to them, and, as the hens roam the yard, you can read Jellybean’s mind in her very gaze, “It’s family, not food… family not food… “. We invited Manuel over for a hot, tasty, dinner of roasted — yes, chicken (from a local farm). While we have all learned a lesson in resilience, the boundaries separating family, predator and prey are forever blurred in my home.

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Stem Cell Treatment for Arthritis

Autologous transplantation of adult stem cells improves osteoarthritis of the knee.

El Pais, Madrid May 22, 2013      Artículo sobre un nuevo uso de células madre en español

Little by little, stem cell technology’s role in clinical medicine is increasing.  Although researchers have yet to see the spectacular results they are hoping for, such as regeneration of heart tissue or treatment for Parkinson’s, there is proof of the future potential for this technique.  A Spanish team has presented a paper due to appear in the next issue of the American Transplant Association journal Transplantation, describing the use of autologous transplantation of mesenchymal (adult) stem cells in the treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee.  In eleven of twelve patients studied, MRIs revealed a significant improvement in articular cartilage quality, and patients reported a decrease in pain and greater mobility of the joint. Continue reading

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Around the World with 25 Wines

Photo credit:  El País
Photo credit: El País

Para leer el arítculo original en español, pinche aquí

“Wine’s moment has arrived,” comments a bystander in the Liceo of Barcleona, and so it has.  The Catalonian winemaker Sumarroca chose this grand theater as a venue at which to introduce La Vinya del Món (Wines of the World), a research project that will help to preserve varieties of wine grapes in danger of disappearing.  Continue reading

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El Caso Couso



English version of this article

El 8 de abril del 2003, faltaba un día para que las fuerzas armadas estadounidenses tomaran Bagdad.  Tras una larga batalla aquella mañana, las tropas de la coalición habían suprimido la mayoría de la resistencia iraqí operante.  Durante la pausa, cientos de corresponsales alojados en el hotel ‘Palestina’ abandonaron sus puestos de perspectiva en los balcones y en el tejado para descansar.  Algunos se quedaron al acecho, Continúa leyendo…

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Success of Wind Energy in Spain

Véase la versión en español de este artículo sobre la energía eólica en España

March, 2013


If he were attacking windmills today, Don Quixote would have his work cut out for him.  On February 4th, 2013 The Guardian announced that Spain had tipped the scales in favor of green electricity.  For the first time, the Southern European nation’s wind energy production exceeded that of any other single source in its energy portfolio.

The Wind Energy Association of Spain has gone on record to state that wind farms across the country produced over 6,000,000 megawatt hours of electricity in the month of January alone, or nearly 25% of its total energy output.   Private entities endeavor, amid a Continue reading

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A charging tree December 2012

(Enlace abajo para el artículo en español)

College students in Spain have trees to charge their electronic devices

According to the online news source elmundo.es, two college students from Castellón, Spain, have designed a ¨solar tree¨ that will provide a source for students and faculty to charge their phones, tablets, and laptops.  Alba Escorig and Fernando Tomás of the Universitat Jaume I explain that their prototype solar tree uses photovoltaic cells that work during the day to deliver a charge range of six hours, and at night acts as a street lamp, shedding light for some four hours after dark.  Passersby can sit on the bench provided and use USB or conventional electrical outlets to charge up their devices while they take a break.

source: http://www.elmundo.es/elmundo/2012/11/12/castellon/1352716198.html

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La Malinche

La Malinche (c1505 – c1529) intérprete y símbolo contradictorio de México    English version

Doña Marina, o La Malinche, fue la primera intérprete de alta influencia entre los europeos y los aborígenes de las américas. Ella misma era una mujer nativa que formó una fuerte relación con Hernán Cortés, y así facilitó la brutal conquista de México que éste realizó.

Su historia personal no se puede confirmar seguridad, sin embargo los historiadores en general reconocen la veracidad de la versión siguiente:

Tras la derrota que sufrieron a manos de Cortés y su banda en Potonchon, el pueblo Tabasco hizo a sus vencedores españoles ofrendas que incluyeron un grupo de mujeres esclavas. Una de éstas, llamada Malinalli, se destacó por su inteligencia, su confianza en sí misma, y por su habilidad con los idiomas. Su lengua materna era el nahuatl, lengua de los aztecas, pueblo dotado de famosos cofres de oro. A Malinali la bautizaron con el nombre Doña Marina, y ella llegó a ser una aliada de mucha confianza de Cortés, e incluso tuvo un hijo con él. Ella fue una intérprete fiel a los conquistadores, pasándo información que conseguía de sus compatriotas al ejército invasor, que era su nueva familia. Su nombre de pila se transformó luego en Malintzín, al estilo nativo, y éste nombre también se vió cambiado para la historia a La Malinche.

Con el desarrollo de la historia Mexicana, La Malinche se vió convertida en un símbolo de traición contra su patria, aunque opinions recientes interpretan su figura histórica en términos más benévolos. La Malinche hoy en día es la historia de una mujer que usó su inteligencia para sobrevivir y que representa la complejidad cultural que es México.




http://www.gacetahispanica.com de La Malinche, Bonnie Holmes

Cristina González-Hernández en su libro Doña Marina (La Malinche) y la formación de la identidad mexicana,


“From la Malinche and Menchú to Modern-Day ‘Mayas’: Women Forging Paths through the Maze of Higher Education”; Vickie A. Hall, Assistant Professor, St. Petersburg College, Clearwater, Florida

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