Lições Espanhol


Retirar: To take away and other uses

...retirándole recursos locales y retirándole autonomía alimentaría y productiva los agricultores
[Caption 4, De consumidor a persona - Short Film - Part 4]


The verb retirar has an array of meanings. Often, it means "to take away" or "to remove." Here, in Part 4 of the stirring documentary De Consumidor a Persona, we learn how farmers are having both their local resources and autonomy in food production taken away by multinational corporations.

Note that retirar is derived from the verb tirar
("to pull"), mentioned in this space just
last week. As in English, the prefix re- can mean "back" in Spanish.

¿Puedo retirar el plato?," a waitress in a restaurant might ask you at the end of a meal, referring to your empty plate. If you say yes, she'll take your plate back to the kitchen.

At the same time, retirar can also mean "to retire" -- an English cognate that's easy enough to remember. But note that retirar's synonym jubilar is often used instead to describe the act of retiring from the workplace, as in Venezuelan Javier Marin's description of his dad's retirement:

"Se encuentra jubilado," ("He's retired,") Javier explains in caption 46 of Part 1 of his chat with us about jewelry-making.



"Retired people" are referred to as jubilados -- doesn't that sound like a happy state to be in? Yes, through shared Latin roots, jubilar is related to "jubilant" in English.


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