Dismissive words for foreign-minority groups in your country


KlaasK
#1
Hi there,

At the moment I’m writing my master thesis about xenophobia in South Africa and problems related to it.

For the introduction of my thesis I want to show that you can find xenophobia in every culture. Therefore I need help from you. In every society are foreign minorities which are not popular and normally you can find special dismissive terms for this foreign groups. Which words are used in your country? Which foreign-minority is the target group of these slurs? What does this slur exactly mean?

Example

Term: makwerekwere
Used in South Africa
Target Group: Foreigners from other African countries
Meaning: a crude onomatopoeic imitation of how foreigners speak - is used to describe foreigners as "those we don't understand"

Perhaps someone can also help me with words:
Gaijin - Japan

Métèque - France

and Canada and the US?

I really hope that you can help me….

Cheers Klaas
 
missile
#2
Being part French,some of the names thrown my way include "lily Pad leaper", "Frog", and "Pea Souper"
 
Reverend Blair
#3
Those aren't really words for foreigners though, Missile. I think that in Canada we don't differentiate our prejudiced terms so much because we can't really tell the immigrants from the born Canadians. That doesn't mean we are less prejudiced as a country, just that our perjoratives aren't as specific.
 
GL Schmitt
#4
While native peoples and the Métis are probably the most discriminated against in Canada, because of our Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, this is more likely to be expressed in deeds than in words.

Probably the most verbally discriminated-against group in Canada is women. The reason many Canadian’s feel entitled to verbalize against this “minority” is – I feel confident – based mostly upon the influence of rap music.

A large quantity of this verbalization of misogynism is an unrealized bigotry, spoken through emulation, rather than as the result of any consciously-held opinion.

Another area of discrimination is across the socio-economic barriers of industry, pitting the "blue collars" against the "suits."

Of course, none of these are foreign minorities. Once again, because of our Charter, there is a good incentive NOT to verbally discriminate against these groups.
 
Colpy
#5
Actually, the word "Raghead" springs to mind. The word refers to exotic headgear worn by foreigners or minority Canadians.

"Paki" is also used for Pakistanis.
 
Dexter Sinister
#6
Quote: Originally Posted by GL Schmitt

While native peoples and the Métis are probably the most discriminated against in Canada...

I don't think there's any "probably" about it, that looks pretty much certain to me. It's not easy to do overt discrimination in this country anymore, but I don't think there's much less of it than there ever was, it's just become more subtle. You'll find it in places like price differentials on housing in various neighborhoods in my city, for instance, but I think it's most commonly and overtly found in jokes, which often express a great deal of hostility. Such as this one: why do women have one more brain cell than cows? So when you squeeze their nipples they won't kick you. And if you're going to tell that one you have to tell this one at the same time, to avoid being accused of sexism: why do men have one more brain cell than dogs? So they won't hump your leg in public. Both of those are really pretty hostile and insulting if you think about them a bit.

Canada is such a nation of immigrants that almost everybody could be identified as a member of some foreign minority group to some degree, and my admittedly unscientific observation is that the most overt discrimination is generally directed at the most recent immigrants, with a more or less constant level of discrimination against aboriginal people by everybody. At one time it was the Irish. It's been Ukrainians, Poles, Pakistanis... And there have been dismissive labels for all them, though I don't think there's anything uniquely Canadian about words like bohunk, Polack or Paki.

In order to be discriminated against though, a group has to be identifiably different somehow. Skin colour is only the most obvious one, and probably the source of the most long-standing discrimination. There was a time when an Irish or slavic accent was enough, or a surname ending in -chuk or -ski, but those characteristics now fall below the radar for most people.

But the Irish, Ukrainians, Poles, etc. are all white. It's visible differences like colour that lead to the most long-standing discrimination. The only words I've ever heard besides Indian for aboriginal people are "jig," and that only once, from a guy who'd proven himself to be a total moron in many other ways, and "wagon burners." And there are always a few dickheads who'll address an aboriginal male as "chief" and a female as "squaw," which eludes my understanding. How can being a chief be a bad thing? And "squaw" is just the word in the Massachusett language for a young woman, not, as Oprah Winfrey would have us believe, a euphemism for certain female body parts.

And along with "rag-head" I've heard "towel-head" and "curry monkey" for the same people, though again, I doubt those are uniquely Canadian slurs.

Actually I'm feeling uncomfortable even typing those words, so I think I'll stop now.
 
Machjo
#7
Just from my personal experiences in Canada it would seem many will hold back on words, but it's in the actions.

For instance, one might not hear the word '******' often, but if a black person applies for a job or looks for an appartment, he might be turned down politely with a lie explaining that the job or appartment had just been taken that day, despite the fact that later, if the black person, suspicious, asks a white friend to do the same, sure enough the job or appartment will be available for him. I know this for a fact sinse I myself have done this for black friends and every time the job or appartment was available for me, but not for them. They also get stopped by the police regularly as well. One friend had once been pulled over by one particular police officer so often, he eventually knew the officer by name. The officer left him alone after that (I suppose he got the hint). And I can go on with blacks, but I think these examples suffice for that.

And as for French Canadians, I'd usually only heard the word 'frog' from friends who did not mean any offence by the term. And when I had met an anglophone who genuinely didn't like French speakers, he didn't use the word frog, but just said in very plain English 'I don't like French people.' and walked away.

The Canadian military was an exception! '******', paki, Jew (used as a derogatory term to mean a penny pincher), skwaw, chink, jap, Long-haired greasy civvy, spic, and many others I just can't remember any more.
 
Cosmo
#8
For the record ... I find this entire thread objectionable. I don't think it merits discussion.
 
KlaasK
#9
objectionable?
I don’t think so. In these Thread these “dismissive words” are not used in an offensive way to insult a minority. It’s a difference between discussion of the meaning of these words and the use. For me this sounds like a “moral-club”.

In Germany most people don’t use slurs for minorities, but they still exist and every society still creates new ones. In Germany for example people from Turkey are often called Kanake (like in Britain Wog). You can find Prejudice against minorities in every society. And of course it is getting more subtle. Do you want an example from Germany?

Today it’s political incorrect to use the word “Zigeuner” (gypsy) in Germany. What is the result? – I a newspaper article I read an article about a crime which was committed by a “gypsy”, but the author wrote about a “mobile ethnic minority”. For me “mobile ethnic minority” is prejudice per excellence. It pretend to be political correct, but it is a new kind of prejudice.
 
Cosmo
#10
Quote: Originally Posted by KlaasK

objectionable?
I don’t think so. In these Thread these “dismissive words” are not used in an offensive way to insult a minority. It’s a difference between discussion of the meaning of these words and the use. For me this sounds like a “moral-club”.

In Germany most people don’t use slurs for minorities, but they still exist and every society still creates new ones. In Germany for example people from Turkey are often called Kanake (like in Britain Wog). You can find Prejudice against minorities in every society. And of course it is getting more subtle. Do you want an example from Germany?

Today it’s political incorrect to use the word “Zigeuner” (gypsy) in Germany. What is the result? – I a newspaper article I read an article about a crime which was committed by a “gypsy”, but the author wrote about a “mobile ethnic minority”. For me “mobile ethnic minority” is prejudice per excellence. It pretend to be political correct, but it is a new kind of prejudice.

What I said was my opinion, Klaask. I am entitled to it. (Wish we had a little emoticon giving a raspberry to insert here )

I'm a dyke. I am a minority who understands the power of words. They are more than letters strung together. They are embodied with intent and purpose. To have a thread dedicated to words with intent to slur or hurt is just mean, in my books. Go to a KKK site and you'll get a whole list of em. I still do not see the merit of discussing it here.

On the other hand, your point about "political correct" euphemisms is spot on. I absolutely agree with your statement of it being a new kind of prejudice. On the surface it has a classier, more intellectual veneer, but underneath it's the same old ugly divisive language.

As a lesbian I have done all I can to eliminate slurs against me and mine. The best way to stop a word from being hurtful is to reclaim it. I'm queer, gay, dyke, lesbo ... and any other descriptive term you care to throw at me. And when people call me these words with intent to hurt, they bounce off because I've internalized them as good and righteous things to be. It's really an inside job on my part. When someone calls me a dyke, they may as well call me a woman, a human or a Canadian for emotional response it fosters within me. "Ya, thanks" is my reaction.

I'm also of Gypsy descent, so I found you last paragraph educational, btw. I have a new word of the day to embrace -- Zigeuner -- but will have to learn how to pronounce it. German kinda sounds like someone with a bone caught in their throat to me so I've never mastered more than a few words of it.

I despise PC bull****. I find your stance on it worth reading and highly valuable in the face of this new socially engineered form of discrimination. And now I agree that the thread has merit, even if it has veered off the original topic of listing words intended to hurt.
 
Jo Canadian
#11
I know that most Inuit will refer to anyone white as Kablunak, or Qallunaq in the East. The majority of Elders there will call you that even if they know what your name is. It's not that it's derogatory, it just is.

Now the Inuit word for an indian isn't used in a very friendly fashion, but this thread isn't on that topic.
 
Blackleaf
#12
Frogs - The French.

Krauts - The Germans.

Jocks - The Scots.

Taffs - the Welsh.

Yanks - Americans.

Septic Tanks - Americans.

Paddies - Irishmen.

Micks - Irishmen.
 
sj007
#13
dont for get the roundheads and the squareheads here in quebec
 
Twila
#14
Quote:

Gaijin - Japan

Non japanese person. Outside person (literal translation) Not dismissive just descriptive.

Chinese call us: Gwai lou (sp?) Means White devil
There is also one for black devil but I don't know it.
 
sj007
#15
any one want a square head joke?
 
Jay
#16
You have to be careful about non-PC things around here.
 
sj007
#17
uhh the square heads r the english jay
 
Twila
#18
Which brings up a point. Is it wrong to make fun of your own people?
 
sj007
#19
nah i dont think so
i think the ability to laugh at urself make u better then staying in steriotypes
its says hey look i can tell u how rediculious thi slabel is by aplying it to myself and laughing
 
Machjo
#20
Quote: Originally Posted by sj007

nah i dont think so
i think the ability to laugh at urself make u better then staying in steriotypes
its says hey look i can tell u how rediculious thi slabel is by aplying it to myself and laughing

I don't know if I fully agree with that. I'd come across blacks using '******' among themselves, yet God forbid I should use it! I remember one black friend who really objected to that use of '******', and would often get into heated arguments with other blacks, saying they shouldn't use it among themselves. I really ded enjoy watching those internal arguments, and whenever they asked my opinion, I'd generally just dodge the question saying I'm not black, that's their internal politics and so I won't get involved. So then they'd just start arguing among themselves again as I'd just watch with delight.

Hmmm... I don't think they ever did resolve that one
 
Canucklehead
#21
Poli-Cor is a travesty of clarity and should be abolished immediately... a fig is a fig and a spade is a spade... deal with it.

Quote: Originally Posted by Twila

Which brings up a point. Is it wrong to make fun of your own people?

Making fun of your own people is a pre-requisite of being Canadian... self deprication is our thing
 

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