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In Catalan Barcelona is pronounced with an S after “bar”. In Castilian (of Castille at least) Barcelona is pronounced with a sound like “th” after “bar”. So in Catalan we pronounce Barcelona in a similar way as an English speaker would do.

As you may know too FC BARCELONA is also known as BARÇA. The letter Ç sounds as an S. One of the mistakes of some people from abroad is to think that BARÇA also refers to the city of Barcelona! This is a very big mistake and nobody from Barcelona, Catalonia or even Spain would make that mistake. Barça is the name of a team. To call Barça to the city it just sounds as a mistake made a foreigner. When we refer to Barcelona as a city we call it Barcelona. Sometines, among friends, we say Barna. Sometimes in newspapers you see BCN to refer to the city. BCN is just the code of the airport of Barcelona, which in fact it is called AEROPORT DEL PRAT. It is the international and only airportof barcelona but its located in the town of EL PRAT. For that reason the airport name is EL PRAT.

In my keyboard I have letters as ç or ñ and I can easily write á, à, â, etc. But there are countries where the keyboards maybe do not have the letter ç so they cannot write BARÇA and then they just write BARCA. I am very used to see that in twitter. But I thought that in newspapers would write BARÇA because they know how to write foreign characters. But I see that NEWSWEEK in the June 13th 2011 frontpage writes BARCA! instead of BARÇA! so maybe I miss something.

I must say that for me to read BARCA instead of BARÇA looks awful because BARCA in Catalan stands for boat and it is pronounced like BARKA.

So, when in Newsweek they write BARCA instead of BARÇA for me it is a big mistake. It is a mistake because if you write BARCA instead of BARÇA you do not show respect for the language heritage of the world. And bsides, if you write BARCA then people may pronounce BARKA instead of something similar to BARSA which is more the way it is pronounced.

As the French language has also the letter Ç I do not understand why Newsweek writes BARCA instead of BARÇA.

Another reason why I do not like to read BARCA instead of BARÇA is because in Spain we still have some companies which seem to forget that we are not in the dictatorship of Franco and when they write Catalan names they still change Ç for C. This is a total lack of respect that reminds me of the dictatorship of Franco so when I see BARCA written in Newsweek I feel sorry that this prestigious American magazine is reminding me of the way that Franco acted with respect with the Catalan language: without acknowledging what we are: And we are people that together with the French and some other people are proud of our language and of our letter Ç.

Anyway, I just hope that the fact the Barça is frontpage of Newsweek can make that some people in Catalonia buy this magazine and start getting used to read in English. Most public libraries in Catalonia have Newsweek and Time on their shelves but few people read them!


4 responses to “BARCA VS BARÇA


  2. I have found this at Newsweek. I do not know if it will be related to June 13th 2011 Newsweek frontpage:

  3. kt ⋅

    Er the reason Barca is written without the cedila is because it doesn’t exist in the English language. Is it insulting when you call London Londres?

  4. Here I put two links to The New York Times and to The Guardian. Both articles are written in English and both use Barça instead of Barca:

    I am used to read Barça when I read newspapers in English and that’s the reason why I was surprised with the use of Barca by Newsweek.

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