"Sin igualdad, nunca será posible otro mundo."
Translation:Without equality, another world will never be possible.
I wonder if this sentence would sound odd to the native Spanish speaking person's ear if it were spoken as "Sin igualdad, otro mundo nunca será posible."
I'm just curious. It certainly is more readily understood to the native English speaker's ear the way I have revised it above.
Not at all, it's the most common formation. But putting the verb first is very common as well, and has the effect of emphasizing the verb. Spanish changes word order the way we change intonation to emphasize different parts of sentences.
A decent primer on word order: http://spanish.about.com/od/sentencestructure/a/word-order-in-spanish.htm
Otro mundo in this case being a better world and one that is reborn through a social justice revolution, not a sci-fi or astronomy scenario.
See: https://es.wikisource.org/wiki/Otro_mundo_es_posible for an example.
I considered asking that "better world" be a possible translation, but upon reflection I don't think that it is a real improvement. Replacing a cliched expression with significant cultural baggage with an imperfect substitute that doesn't have nearly the same weight is a bad trade. Can anyone think of a similarly loaded English language synonym for otro mundo? because "another world" is not accurate either.
How about "A Brave New World?" That's got loads of baggage, albeit with some dystopian undertones. Despite Huxley's novel, this term still gets some play from the idealistically minded. Given that "Otro Mundo" is also undoubtedly scoffed at by conservatives in the Spanish speaking world, I think my personal translation is viable. Well, as much as possible anyway.
I both agree and disagree with what you say here. There is content here for someone familiar with the social justice movement in Spanish speaking countries. The cultural meaning here is closest to the bumper sticker wisdom of "No Justice, no Peace. Know Justice, Know Peace."; essentially it is a well worn slogan of the left. It is unrealistic for a learner to understand that out of context so it seems bizarre, but since this is a pat phrase that one might encounter there is value in learning and understanding it if your goal is fluency.
The sentence is used in the following article in context. http://www.movimientos.org/es/show_text.php3%3Fkey%3D406
La globalización económica refuerza un sistema sexista, excluyente y patriarcal. Incrementa, como hemos visto, la feminización de la pobreza y exacerba todas las formas de violencia contra las mujeres. La igualdad entre hombres y mujeres es una dimensión central de nuestra lucha. Sin igualdad, nunca será posible otro mundo.
This is a common misunderstanding about what is meant by "abstract nouns". The definite article is used when referring to a certain quantity of a noun. In both English and Spanish this means that the definite article is used to signify an understood amount:
- The cat : El gato
- The world : El mundo
- The equal amounts : Las cantidades iguales
Spanish differs from English in that the definite article is also used to specify the totality/idea of a noun where English uses a plural if the thing is countable and no signifier if it is uncountable. If you think about it, the Spanish approach is more logical and consistent than English, since "all" is a defined quantity:
- Cats have fur : Los gatos tienen la piel
- Planets are bigger than Pluto : Los planetas son más grandes que Plutón
- What is equality? : ¿Qué es la igualdad?
This referring to things in the general sense is correctly called "abstract nouns" because the subject is an abstract whole of that class of things. The problem for many learners, however, is that "abstract" is easily confused with a noun with no physical existence (cats are actual, equality is abstract). These two meanings are frequently conflated and cause no end of confusion since it makes the use of the definite article appear random.
So the correct way to read this sentence is "Without (some types of) equality, another world will never be possible". The referent is to some unstated but understood types of equality (social, income, education...) rather than one type of equality or equality as an abstract idea. For example, an equality of ages, temperatures, danger, or puppy ownership probably does not factor in the speaker's vision of a better world. Well....maybe puppies.
I would never say, that "los gatos" can be named as "abstract noun". But those articles with plurals I understand and thank you for that too. By abstract nouns I mean only nonfisical existences - for example, in this sentence from the course https://www.duolingo.com/comment/1306749 both nouns have articles - and I can't see any difference between that case and this one. Please, explain to me the difference in using and not using articles in these two sentences.
Keep in mind that it isn't the actual cats in los gatos that are abstract, the cats exist and have physical presence. It is the set of "all cats" that is abstract because you are not referring to any one cat or set of cats, except as a definitional whole. The category is an abstraction because you are not referring to any one cat. In the example I gave above that cats have fur, that is a valid statement even if I have a bald cat, or a shaved one. The idea of a cat is not the same thing as an actual cat, and so when referring to the idea (the essential cat) you mark it with a definite article. Your comment here is a great example of why this idea that "abstract nouns get the definite article" is confusing and unhelpful. Were I you, I would just forget that non-rule and begin applying definite articles to a defined number of a noun or to the definitional whole.
Now the other sentence you refer to has examples of each usage of definite articles. "La fe nunca es perfecta, pero el conocimiento sí." is a categorical statement about one noun (fe) and a particular kind of another noun (conocimiento). This is why I translated it there: faith is always open to doubts, but testable reality (science) can be proven. The unfortunate thing is that the only reason we would parse it out that way is because I found the original quote in context. However, even without that context, as just an open statement that faith is imperfect, but knowledge is perfect, it will still include articles before the nouns because we are talking about everything falling under the definition of faith/belief and everything falling under the definition of knowledge. To leave off the article from those nouns signals that some faith is perfect, and some knowledge is imperfect, which is not the intention.
In this lesson, not all equality is intended, so no article.
Special Note: It had not struck me before why post-modern and post-structural philosophies originate in continental Europe and translate so poorly into English. I think grasping this structural linguistic separation of object from definition in Latin languages does more to explain Deleuze and Foucault than their books do. Ceci n'est pas une pipe.
Ok, I see, thank you. Not that I can say that starting from tomorrow I will never make mistake in articles with my "abstract nouns" for this is a bit complicated for me now - but anyway thanks a lot, you definition was detailed and helpful.
Your special note sounds plausible! :)
Without [true] equality, a different world will never happen.
Basically, if we want the world to be a better place, we all have to become better people. And a good first step towards that would be to work to eliminate discrimination of any kind.
Think of it as the philosophy behind Star Trek, as told by a rather poetic Zen master.
Because será is the future indicative of ser, and what that tense is used for is to signal a possibility, an opinion, or conditional something "will be" rather than a certainty of something.
The difference is subtle, but logical.
Va a ser un doctor expresses the certainty that s/he is going to be a doctor.
Peter Capaldi será un Doctor Who mas interesante. expresses the opinion that Peter Capaldi will be a more interesting Doctor Who, and so requires the indicative tense.
In the same way, the speaker here in this phrase is expressing an opinion.