San Antonio professor discusses why younger Hispanics lost out on speaking Spanish and whether ‘Spanglish’ is valid

OLLU professor Dr. Maribel Larraga discusses loss of Spanish language between generations

SAN ANTONIO – When it comes to language, many generations have lost Spanish because it was not passed on.

On Wednesday’s KSAT News Now, we discussed the topic and asked the question: Do you have to speak Spanish to be considered Latino, Hispanic or Mexican-American? What if you speak what is referred to as Tex-Mex or Spanglish? Is that valid and can it be accepted?

Dr. Maribel Larraga OLLU

Alicia Barrera spoke with Dr. Maribel Larraga, professor of humanities and social sciences at Our Lady of the Lake University. Larraga said the loss of Spanish between generations was generally a way of parents protecting their children from punishment or ridicule.

Watch the video above for the full conversation with Dr. Larraga, who also defined code-switching, and how language and identity are intertwined.

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Wednesday’s full edition of KSAT News Now is below:


About the Authors:

Alicia Barrera is a KSAT 12 News reporter and anchor. She is also a co-host of the streaming show KSAT News Now. Alicia is a first-generation Mexican-American, fluent in both Spanish and English with a bachelor's degree from Our Lady of the Lake University. She enjoys reading books, traveling solo across Mexico and spending time with family.

RJ Marquez has been at KSAT since 2010. He's covered a variety of stories and events across the San Antonio area, and is the lead reporter for KSAT Explains. He also covers the Spurs for on-air and digital platforms. You can see RJ regularly on KSAT Explains and Good Morning San Antonio. He also writes a weekly Spurs newsletter.