My Linguistic Background (Karina)

When it comes to communication I feel like I’m a mess. I don’t know how people understand me sometimes. My first language is English and I grew up in a Dominican home so we spoke Spanish most of the time. I wasn’t aware of  an accent when I spoke Spanish until my early twenties when I was told I sound Puerto Rican. I would put a face and say,” Na, I’m Dominican.” Give me a drink and throw on some bachata,you wouldn’t mistake it. I didn’t even realize I spoke really fast (Dominican stereotype) until high school.Guess I would get nervous or something. Sometimes I get kind of eager or excited and my voice even changes a bit; been told I sound like a cartoon character. I grew up in Bushwick before it was gentrified, so sometimes I’d speak with, let’s call it a little sass . My Spanish speaking has gotten better and I’m still learning new words so I can translate when needed to. Like at work, I can use my formal Spanish/English dialect and then that mumbling that’s my normal dialect where people just smile and pretend they know what I said.

3 thoughts on “My Linguistic Background (Karina)”

  1. That is pretty interesting that people assume you were Puerto Rican when you speak Spanish outside of your home, all the meanwhile you are Dominican. Has anyone ever explained why they assumed you are Puerto Rican based on your Spanish dialect?

  2. They never actually explained why. Not sure if its the tone I speak Spanish in. Its weird because both of my parents are Dominican, the Spanish dialect I grew up learning should be the same as theirs lol.

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