Spanish Jews Petition for Removal of Offensive Word From Official Dictionary

Federation of Jewish Communities in Spain wants to remove the word 'Judiada' from the Dictionary of the Spanish Language.

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The representative body of Spain’s Jewish community has renewed efforts to have a pejorative word connected to Jews scrapped from the country's official dictionary.

Isaac Querub, president of the Federation of Jewish Communities in Spain , recently wrote to the Royal Spanish Academy, the institution responsible for regulating the Spanish language, to remove the word “Judiada” from the Dictionary of the Spanish Language.

The dictionary defines the word, which literally means Jewry, as: “Bad action that is considered, with bias, to belong to Jews." This negative statement about Jews “goes against the norms of good behavior. It does not belong in a dictionary published in the 21st century,” Querub wrote in a letter to the academy.

Querub’s letter came after the academy declined an appeal in June by Raquel Amselem, a professor at Valencia’s Polytechnic University, to expunge the word. “The dictionary is merely a reflection of the language and the word is documented in a sufficient amount of texts,” a representative of the academy wrote in an email to Amselem.

The dictionary recently changed the definition of marriage to include unions between same-sex partners, according to El Mundo, a Spanish newspaper. The new edition of the official dictionary is scheduled to appear in 2014.

The twenty-second edition of the dictionary of the Royal Spanish Academy.Credit: Robert Gordon

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