I also wrote 'I respect the women', which is very different to "I respect women". This is one of those cases where duolingo lets us down because I'm not sure which is correct. Even though it says both are! Confusing.
"I respect women" is right. We (native speakers) say "Yo respeto a las mujeres" to mean all the female human beings are respected by either the man or the woman who is speaking. If we want to talk about some specific group, we add some adjective like "linda (pretty), Afroamericana (African-American)" and so on at the end of the sentence. Some examples are:
"Yo respeto a las mujeres lindas" and "Yo respeto a las mujeres afroamericanas".
"a" is the indefinite article and "las" the definite article, the plural for female human beings.
The particle "a" is present because the speaker is about to define what he or she is talking about. For instance: "Yo voy a....(I am going to...)", "El llega a....(He arrives to...)". When the speaker uses "las mujeres (women)", he defines he is talking about women(female humans in general), not a specific group of women.
In every other comment I've seen people defend that using 'las' means you ARE being specific, in saying 'the', as opposed to speaking in general.
You may find that this helps "a determiner ( the in English) that introduces a noun phrase and implies that the thing mentioned has already been mentioned, or is common knowledge, or is about to be defined (as in the book on the table ; the art of government ; the famous public school in Berkshire )."
So, maybe the las here is a definite article in the fact that the noun is common knowledge. Can anyone confirm this?
I think it is "Respeto a las mujeres" for these reasons. One being that "a" is used for humans when they are the direct object. And the reason "las" is included is because "a" requires a definite article (so my sources tell me). A site referring to your usage of "a" as something that is common or about to be introduced would be helpful for me, though. I used: SpanishDict and Drlemon.
EDIT: The reason "las" is used is because anytime a noun is referred to in a general sense then a definite article is used.
Does that mean that the sentence "Yo respeto las mujeres", without the indefinite article "a", points to a specific group of females?
In Spanish, the indefinite articles are "un, una". "A" is an "English indefinite article, but not in Spanish. "Un/una" = "a" http://spanish.about.com/od/adjectives/a/indefinite.htm http://www.spanishdict.com/guide/using-the-indefinite-article-in-spanish
Tengo una manzana. (I have an apple.)
Tengo un libro de gramática. (I have a grammar book.)
"A" in Spanish is a preposition, not an indefinite article. http://www.spanishdict.com/translate/a
Here is my understanding of the "a." The "a" is a "personal a". Contrary to what felipinho1982 above says, "a" is NOT an indefinite article in Spanish-- it is a preposition. http://www.spanishdict.com/translate/a
"In Spanish, when the direct object is a person, it is preceded by the preposition 'a.' This word has no English translation."
"Jorge llama a María." (Jorge calls María.)
"From the perspective of the English speaker, the personal “a” appears to be an extra word. From the perspective of the Spanish speaker, the personal “a” is required, and to not use it is a serious error."
This reference explains the "personal a": HTTP://STUDYSPANISH.COM/GRAMMAR/LESSONS/PERSA
Note the use of "a" with "respetar" in this source. In all the examples, "respectar" uses an "a" with people, but not with things. http://www.spanishdict.com/examples/respetar
However, it might be that the "a" is not a "personal a". I am not certain about that. Regardless , it is the case that "respetar" uses an "a" with people.
These are from the SpanishDict.com reference:
"Rusia debe respetar su propia constitución" (no "a").
"Respetó a sus maestros en todo momento."
"Hay que respetar a los ancianos" (los ancianos - ancient ones, elderly).
"no respeta las señales de tráfico." (no "a"; senales = sign).
"respeten las planta" (no "a").
"nunca ha respetado a sus padres".
"no se respeta a sí misma".
"Es difícil querer o respetar a un pueblo" (Pueblo = people).
"Deben respetar el derecho internacional" (no "a").
"Permítanos respetar a nuestros ciudadanos_ (cuidadanos = citizens).
"mostrar respeto por Europa." (no "a").
This website says "a" is not an indefinite article in Spanish, but a preposition: http://www.spanishdict.com/translate/a
These are the indefinite articles in Spanish: "un/una" and "unos/unas". Source: https://www.spanishdict.com/guide/indefinite-articles-in-spanish
Please someone answer the original question. Why is this not i respect the women? Im not talking a specific type of women. For example a lawyer is asked about the women the jury. He responds "I respect the women". The jury would be just a group of women. Not a specific group. Just a general group. He's also not referring to all women, just the ones in the jury. Would that still translate to the original answer or would you say it differently in Spanish?
Are you saying you CAN'T say just "I respect the women" in Spanish without further qualifying those women in some way?
A Donald Trump le encantan los mujeres. Él respeto a los mujeres muy mucho. Nadie respeta a las mujeres más que el Donald.
That sounds... very unnatural. You need the "las" for general things, that is how we say it in Spanish. You can't say "me gustan gatos" you have to say "me gustan los gatos"
Would you still use the personal "a" when speaking about women in general rather than a group of women?
My understanding from here http://www.studyspanish.com/lessons/persa.htm is that you wouldn't, because "women" as a concept is impersonal, while "the women" referring to a group of women, is personal and would require the "a."
This is what I thought/think as well. I translated this as "the women" (referring to a particular group of women) rather than "women" (in general) because of the personal "a."
I just need to buy a Spanish kindergarten grammar book and go from there...
There are a lot of sites that could help you with grammar and usage, for free, like www.spanishdict.com or www.studyspanish.com, and more. They're quite helpful. I'd also downloaded the book "Easy Spanish Step-by-Step by Barbara Bregstein published by McGraw-Hill before I started Duolingo. It's been very helpful.
Why "respeto a las mujeres" and not just "respeto las mujeres"? Is it to give some extra respect by using "a" or is it really necessary?
Could someone please explain the purpose of "a [las/los/el/la]" after a verb followed by (usually) people?
(This was never explained in class and I always forget to bring it up.)
It's called a "personal a" and it is used to indicate that the indirect object of the sentence is a person or pet.
Thank you. So it doesn't apply to objects or locations (for example: lamps, Niagra Falls)?
Can I say "Respeto a las mujeres" and mean the same ?. I like the aspect of spanish in which we don't want to use "I" always as in English.
Why does "respeto" pronounced with a (rolling) "rr"? What is the rule for that?
How is "yo" pronounced, please? Till now Duolingo lady always said it like in "Joe" and now I heard it pronounced as in "yoghurt" for the first time. Does it depend on region?
So if the translation is "I respect women," then WHAT THE HECK is with the "a las"?! Would that not mean "I respect on the women"?!
Asked and answered many times above. Anyway, here:
Personal "a" isn't translatable to English and is used before a direct object when the DO is a:
1. Person or Persons
Example: Veo a mi madre. (I see my mother) - “madre” is an
identifiable individual and person.
Consider these examples:
1A. Veo a mi hermana. I see my sister.
1B. Veo mi libro y mis gafas. I see my book and glasses.
In example 1B, the personal “a” is not used because the direct objects are not persons.
1C. Veo a tres personas que son mis primos. I see three people who are my cousins.
1D. Necesito tres personas para hacer un trabajo. I need three people to do a job.
Here in example 1D the personal “a” is not used because the direct object persons are not anyone specific.
2. Indefinite-Pronoun Person(s)
The personal “a” will be used as explained above with the following indefinite pronouns:
- Alguien (somebody/someone/anyone)
- Alguno (some) in reference to people.
- Nadie (nobody/no-one)
- Ninguno (none) in reference to people
- Quién (who/whom)
- Cualquiera (any) in reference to people.
2A. No veo a nadie con quien trabajo. I do not see anybody I work with.
2B. No veo a nadie que conozca. I do not see anyone whom I know.
3. Pets (as Person[s])
You also use the personal “a” with your own pets or the pets of other people.
Do not use the personal “a” where there is no personal relationship as for insects, fish, birds etc.
Notes on the verbs "Tener" and "Hay":
- Do not use the personal “a” after the verb “tener” or any form of “hay” (from haber).
- There is an exception to this rule where the direct object of “tener” means
to hold or to have someone physically or emotionally close to you.
Cuando necesitan consuelo y apoyo, tengo
a mis niños en los brazos. "When they need comfort and support I have my young children in my arms."
Tengo cuatro hijos y solo un marido. "I have four children and only one husband."
oooooooohhhh! thanks! do you speak spanish from birth? you always have really great answers!
You're welcome. And thanks, but no, I'm not a native speaker. Just trying to learn.
P.S. And the answer I gave you, I just picked that out of the site referenced above lol.
Something Weinstein, Moore, Trump, Clinton, and Matt Lauer has never said...
Yet another sentence that leaves me wondering about the hypothetical context it was spoken in. Thanks, Duolingo.
Yo respeto a las mujeres.. why is the -a and -las necessary when it's just translated to "i respect women" ????????????????????????
cupiditas- AAAAAnother lenguage may have different rules than yours. personal A is needed in front of an animated noun and in Spanish, you need normally the article.
Why can't it mean "I respect the wives", since in a previous question the word, mujer, was translated as wife?
I wrote: I respect on the women. I got it wrong. duo puts random spanish words to trip us up.
I'm surprised that there's no feminist jokes here. No offense to women though.
did anyone else make the dumb mistake and say "I respect on the women" at first? no? Ok :(
Based on a previous question in this section "Yo respeto a mi mujer" meaning "I respect my wife", why isn't the meaning of this one "I respect wives"??