Guaraní in the Heart of South America

May 25th, 2018 · 25 mins 56 secs

About this Episode

Guaraní is an indigenous language that defies all odds to exist today as it does alongside Spanish in Paraguay. But what odds? How does it thrive in the modern world? In this episode of Language Stories, we're exploring the story of Guaraní in Paraguay.

Guaraní is an indigenous language that defies all odds to exist today as it does alongside Spanish in Paraguay. But what odds? How does it thrive in the modern world? Click through to listen + watch this episode of Language Stories from Lindsay Does Languages.

Why Guaraní?

My Guaraní story started more than a year ago. When I knew we’d be taking this trip that turned into season one of Language Stories, I knew I wanted to use it as an excuse to learn a new language. But The Americas? Surely that’s awash with English in the USA, French in Quebec, and Spanish in Central and South America, right? Well, as I hope this season has proved so far, that’s not the case.

So for me, Guaraní has always been there throughout making this season. From finding a Paraguayan restaurant with Guaraní words on the wall in New York, to taking online lessons with my tutor in Mexico, and Memrising my little heart out each day in Nicaragua, Guaraní has been there the whole time.

This was always going to be a much more personal episode of Language Stories given that I was learning the language myself. When we visited, Paraguay and Guaraní didn't disappoint.

The Video


Romy Natalia Goldberg - Romy wrote an awesome travel guide to Paraguay that's well worth getting a copy of if you're heading to the country, or just want to know more about Paraguay.

Marcelo - my Guaraní tutor from the get go! Here's his italki profile.

Guaranglish - a great app teaching English to Guaraní speakers and vice versa.

IDIPAR - the language school in Asunción where I studied Guaraní for a week.

Further Reading + Resources

Newfound Pride in Guaraní, a Language Long Disdained in Paraguay - an article from the New York Times in early 2018 about the language.

Language Planning and Policy in Paraguay - a document about how Guaraní and Spaish live alongside each other in Paraguay.

Land and Dignity in Paraguay - a Google Book covering Guaraní under Stroessner.

Language Planning and Policy in Latin America, Volume 1 - another Google Book with some interesting points on Guaraní under Stroessner.

Duolingo - the Guaraní course on Duolingo.

Peace Corps PDFs - the Peace Corps PDFs I used to get to grips with the language.

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