dirty words

Marcello Gustavo Torres mgtorres@NUTECNET.COM.BR
Fri Nov 1 06:11:41 EST 1996


At 07:49 10/31/96 GMT, you wrote:
>>Dear Dennis,
>>Do "dirty" words really lose their power after being taken out of the
>>closet?  Many of them have been around for quite some time, including
>>"nigger," [...]
<snip>
>   As for ethnic slurs, the n-word is a bastardization of "negro," a Spanish
>and Portugese word that in English translates to "black." It has long since
>become extremely loaded, of course, and I would not suggest using it
>casually on this forum.
>   Ray
>
>P.S.: Richard Pryor may have used that word a lot, but he later distanced
>himself from it. No one, he has said, is called that in Africa.
>
<snip>

Interesting points! However, I would like to point out that the
conceptualization of "negro" as a standard translation of "black" in
Portuguese is not correct.

As a matter of fact, the Civil Liberties' Movements in Brazil, including the
Negro organizations, DO STRESS the use of the word "negro" in lieu of
"black" which would translate as "preto." I would go so far as to say they
are extremely CONCERNED of being called "preto" instead of the proper form
of "negro!"

One word that does present the fuzzy meaning that you refer to above is
"criolo" which in Brazil - where I live - REALLY has a very pejorative
meaning, inasmuch as "nigger" in the US. As a matter of fact, "criolo," in
Spanish, "criollo," was a word used in the Spanish Colonies of South and
Latin America to indicate anyone who was born in the Colony, whether to
mixed - "mestizo" - or pure Spanish parents.

Changing the subjects!? I have been in this list for 48 hours and have
already learned many things, from BBQ places to sources for "difficult"
records! Amazing!

Best regards!

Marcello

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