Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Carabao English



One of the first things I learned while watching Sesame Street is the realization that there’s many English. There’s Birtish English, there’s American, there’s Black American English, there Hispanic, and being one of the English speaking countries, I am sure there’s such a thing as Filipino English or Carabao English. The differences can be as minor as pronunciation to as major as grammar and idioms.

I saw this TV special about China’s preparation for the Olympics. In the program the Chinese were shown implementing programs to train their people, especially those in the Beijing area, to speak English. To check if the program was working, one of the reporters rode a taxi and he asked the driver to take him to the railroad station. The taxi driver was scratching his head and told the interpreter that he can’t understand. They tried it to different taxi drivers and the result were always the same. Even simple words like proper nouns were beyond the common Chinese to understand. This made me realize that even though English as a second language is declining in the Philippines yet we are still better at it than other countries for even the smallest child here have enough vocabulary for an understandable and decent conversation in Carabao English (or Pidgin English).

5 comments:

Jayred said...

Well, Filipino English and Carabao English are not one and the same.

Carabao English -- the connotation, that is -- more or less refers to broken English. Mala Tarzan na English.

Filipino English naman is another variation of English, just like British English, American English or Australian English.

What we Pinoy bloggers use in writing our blogs is basically Filipino English, although some near-native, English-writing Pinoys do write either in American English or British English. They know slang words and all that.

Di hamak na mas magaling tayo sa mga you-know-who mag Ingles ha. :-)

George said...

Hmmm...hmmm...Oo nga ano :-)

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Anonymous said...

im interested to this topic!

Anonymous said...

yes very true carabao english is a bit different from Filipino English!

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