Wednesday, April 11, 2012

False Friend: Resumen vs. Resume (and Résumé)

If you've play video games, a screen like this may look familiar.
"Pause" means to stop or take a break, "resume" means to start playing again.
Hello again, and welcome to Word Wednesday--although it's almost Thursday, so I need to type fast! It's been a while since we specifically looked at a False Friend, so today we'll talk about a common vocabulary problem. If you're not sure what a False Friend is, check out this introductory post. Today we'll look at the difference between resumen in Spanish and the words resume and résumé in English: 

False Friend: resumen vs. resume 
This SPANISH word...
Looks like this ENGLISH word...
...but they are DIFFERENT because...
In Spanish, a resumen is something that converts a lot of information or text into a smaller unit. The English word for this is a summary, and the verb is to summarize:
"I didn't have time to read the whole book, but I found a summary that gave me the basic information."

The words resume and résumé are completely different.

Resume is a verb. If you stop doing an action and then start doing it again later, you resume the action:
"Every day during the conference we took a one-hour lunch break, and then the presentations resumed in the afternoon."

Résumé is a noun. The word résumé is sometimes written without the accent marks (like "resume"), but that can cause confusion for pronunciation, since the two words aren't pronounced the same. (Click here for pronunciation: resume résumé.)

A résumé is a document that you give to businesses when you are looking for a job. It contains information about your biographical history, your studies, and your work experience:
"I just got fired, so I have to look for a new job. But first I need to update my résumé or else I'll never get a job!"

I wish I could have given you a quicker summary of these words, but they're complicated. Thanks for reading, and now you can resume whatever you were doing before you started reading this blog! If you have any questions, please leave a comment below. If you have suggestions for other False Friends or Common Errors, please tell me. 

Thanks for reading, and have a great day!

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