I would be lying if I didn't say that I have been counting down the days until the release of Spanish Castilian. My love for the language and culture has started with my choice to study Spanish to fulfill my foreign language requirement in high school. My high school teacher was originally from Valencia, Spain and this was when I first learned the differences between Spanish of Spain and Latin American Spanish. She shared many fascinating stories about the history and culture of Spanish (a lot of which you can find in cultural notes in the new Mango Castilian Spanish course). I realized I wasn't done with Spanish after I graduated and decided to keep learning and majored in Spanish in college.
To this day, that was one of the best decision I have ever made since it lead me to choose a study abroad program in Madrid, Spanish for a summer. From making the perfect paella, to quickly realizing how important futbol is for the Spaniards, the culture of Spain is beautiful to say the least. Being surrounded by native Castilian speakers, I slowly started to pick up the differences.
So what exactly are the differences between the Spanish of Spain and the Spanish of Latin America? A good example is to compare it to the differences between British English and American English. Most people in the Spanish-speaking world can communicate and understand each other, however there are differences that are noticeable if comparing the two. Some of the common differences is that many Spaniards often pronounce the z and the c before i or elike the "th" in "things." As far as grammar goes, the biggest difference is the leísmo (the use of the indirect object pronoun le in place of the standard direct object pronoun lo) of Spain and that Spaniards use vosotros as the plural of tú (the singular word for "you"), while in Latin America ustedes is usually used.
There you go, a little lesson and you haven't even started the course.
Planning on traveling? Not to worry. Whether you're looking to climb to the top of Gaudi's Sagrada Familia in Barcelona (pronounced "Bar-THe-lona"), run with the bulls in the San Fermin festival, or dance the night away in Ibiza, Mango is ready to accompany you on your adventures. Through your library and Mango Languages, not only do you get access to Castilian Spanish, among 40+ foreign languages, but you also get access to our free mobile apps, available on iPhones, iPod Touch and Android devices.
Whether you walk, run or flamenco dance* to your public library, make sure to check out our new Castilian Spanish course!
Buena suerte (good luck)!
*We here at Mango consider flamenco dancing incredibly impressive, videos are welcome.