[OT] Inuit? Eskimo?
geoff at gerrietts.net
Wed Oct 22 19:40:49 CEST 2003
Quoting Geoff Gerrietts (geoff at gerrietts.net):
> Further, it appears that "Eskimo" is not as clearly understood as we
> thought it was. Some portion of our audience believes Eskimo to be a
> pejorative term. Some portion of our audience regards Eskimo as a
> tribal name.
> Where the original question tried to sort out "What term has replaced
> Eskimo in the same way Native American has replaced American Indian?"
> But it appears that Native American hasn't really replaced American
> Indian in the simple way we thought it had. Meanwhile, for some prior
> usages of "Eskimo", that term is still correct: it identifies a
> specific cultural/ethnic/tribal group. In other ways, there doesn't
> appear to be a real equivalent. While "all descendents of indigineous
> peoples" seem to have some kind of collective identity, it does not
> appear that "all descendents of indigineous peoples that lived north
> of the Arctic" do.
Up to this point I think I was doing okay. I should have kept going
down the thread, missed a few key posts. :)
But it looks like Eskimo is still more complicated than my initial
readings suggested. I don't think I can adequately express how it is
"correctly used", but I think it's pretty safe to say that a
substantial percentage of prior usage intended it to apply more
broadly than it actually does.
Geoff Gerrietts "Punctuality is the virtue of the bored."
<geoff at gerrietts net> --Evelyn Waugh
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