to use reflexive or not

AshlynA1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

to use reflexive or not

the last sentence is 'to spend our money' and the answer is 'para gaster nuestro dinero'.

but can we say 'para gastarnos el dinero.'? because from what I understand, Spanish doesn't like to use pronouns with body parts and possessions.

please correct me if I am wrong.

Asked 2 months ago
InmaKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Hola Ashlyn

You can use the reflexive pronoun to emphasise it, and to reflect more involvement in the action, so: para gastarnos nuestro dinero would be correct. This emphatic se is called se aspectual

As for the use of the possessive "el dinero" instead of "nuestro dinero", yes, you're right, we tend to use the definite article when it's clear and obvious that we are referring to something that "belongs" to the person who is speaking. With parts of the body this is definitely something that sounds more natural (this doesn't mean that we always reject the possessive though); with possessions I would say this practice is less obvious and if we use the possessive we are somehow highlighting the possessor. Summarising, all these are correct:

para gastar nuestro dinero

para gastarnos nuestro dinero

para gastarnos el dinero

As this was a A2 exercise, we kept it more simple, more appropriate for A2, without including that extra reflexive pronoun.

I hope it clarified it.

Saludos

Inma

JohnC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Hola Ashlyn, 

Just to clarify when describing body parts and clothing, in Spanish, we don't say "my arm, my leg, my T shirt" etc; that is we don't use the possessive "my." We use the relevant definite article masculine or feminine el, la, los, las. As for other possessions like money, this rule doesn't apply, so you can happily say mi dinero, mi hermano etc. 

As for the sentence "para gastar nuestro dinero" this is the correct construction. It translates as para = in order; gastar = infinitive, to spend; nuestro dinero = our money." Your construction "gastarnos" doesn't work in this context.

I hope this helps. Saludos John

to use reflexive or not

the last sentence is 'to spend our money' and the answer is 'para gaster nuestro dinero'.

but can we say 'para gastarnos el dinero.'? because from what I understand, Spanish doesn't like to use pronouns with body parts and possessions.

please correct me if I am wrong.

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