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Por versus Para

David-M38

David-M38

In lesson 10.1, why is it "Pense que hablabas todo el tiempo solo POR escuchar el sonido de tu voz." - but " se utiliza el imperfecto PARA hablar de edad." ? Can both words be used interchangeably & grammatically correctly? Or must you use POR with escuchar and PARA with hablar?
Steven-W15

Steven-W15

Welcome to our pain. :-)
Dan-H24

Dan-H24

I am sure they are not interchangeable. I tried for 15 minutes yesterday to write a logical answer to your question and failed, so deleted my response. I will try again now... One of the uses of por is to convey a motivating factor for an action. So in your example, the person talks all the time just to hear the sound of his/her voice. Hearing the voice is the cause or reason for talking. One of the uses of para is to convey a goal. In the second example, the imperfect is used to talk about age. Talking about age is the goal of using the imperfect, so para. The distinctions between these two examples, are in my mind, very subtle and I would be hard pressed to explain them convincingly. And maybe I am all wrong about this. But this is the best I can do. Hopefully Cristian will explain things more clearly, and/or correct my mistaken explanation.
Steven-W15

Steven-W15

Regarding "por" and "para", it's all contextual and there are phrases where you could use either - but with very different meanings. In most cases now, I can recognize which one to use because it "sounds" right (which is actually what Amy said would happen in one one of the lessons if I remember correctly) - but I would be hard pressed to tell you why. I think it comes from seeing a lot of examples over time. Dan - you mentioned a web site "...that had a little graphic on it that is helping me...slowly...visualize whether to use por or para...". Do you have that URL? Aurora cited a URL containing a quiz for por and para: http://www.learnspanishfeelgood.com/prepositions-para-por1.html#
David-M38

David-M38

thanks to everyone for the suggestions & advice.
Ava Dawn

Ava Dawn

I am actually experiencing more like what Steven says. It just sounds right. I was surprised to take the quiz and got it right. It was all instinctive. No rules. Maybe someday I will realize the flowchart of por and para
Dan-H24

Dan-H24

Steven: here is the link to the little por o para chart. Actually, her whole website is helpful. http://www.drlemon.com/Grammar/por-para.html

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