"In the U.S., back in the day "nigger" was rude, and "colored" was what polite folks said. Then came the announcement that "colored" was condescending and rude, and "negro" was the proper term. Then "negro" was bad'n'wrong, and "black" was polite. Then "black" was inaccurate, and African-American was the proper term. I lost interest in following the reasoning at about "black"...."Le sigh. I'm able to go along with as much of 4 rounds of "re-branding" to accommodate folks comfort and such before I start to suspect it's all just a con game to perpetuate a sense of guilt and social awkwardness as a lobbying tool - at which point I begin to find it difficult to play along.
Thursday, March 1, 2012
Regional Variations in Semantics
Some terminology is both complex and highly regional - as became apparent in discussing a hot-button term with a friend from abroad...