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Thread: Gaijin - A derogetory term?

  1. #226
    Mekugi Guest

    Default Heat

    Wow this is really rolling out of control!


    A little gas to the fire :
    Hakujin and kokojin are all indeed under the classification "gaijin". Not only have they ascertained that these are "foreigners" but also these are people with different skin color. Myself, I am kind of pink actually. I have that Oregon tan that takes years of sunless condition to develop...schnarf.

    On the opposite end you have Nihonjin, who do not designate themselves as a color (yellow-people?)nor do they call themselves gaijin whenever abroad. They simply see themselves as "people". I think that is where "we gaijin" are finding a drift- its not the language especially, but the logic that accompanies the language. However in this case if you become too sensative you will start finding hidden messages in Star Wars- exempli gratia: Darth Vader, a white guy trapped in a black suit. INSIDE WE ALL WANT TO BE WHITE!! (yeah...Mall Rats rules).

    Not everyone in Japan is like this, and it seems that there is a big PC debate about what is and is not proper to say; and perhaps one is right in assuming that sticks and stones may break your bones but names should never hurt you *however* in order to initiate change on the social level, there must fist be an individual awareness of what is being said and why. A education that must start from within. I myself am guilty of being so "un-p.c." at times it would drive the tofu-eating-granola-munching-tree-hugging-vegetarian-pacifist to the point of grabbing a sack lunch, a rifle and heading to a clocktower to wait until I get off work(whew that's a mouthful). That does not mean, however, that I am racist in my heart of hearts, it just means I have to watch what I communicate to people in order to protect their feelings; which from what I understand is what speech in Japanese is supposed to be all about, right? An attempt to speak in a manner to protect the feelings of the individual while conveying a message as politely as possible. As ambiguous a thing that this may seem, it is important to remember that feelings are a big part of the psyche in every person, whether they admit it or not. In that sense, perhaps everyone needs to step back and remind themselves of the emotional stress they can cause another person by viewing them as anything other than another human being; intentionally or otherwise.

    Ehh what the heck do I know anyway...


    -R

  2. #227
    Kimpatsu Guest

    Default

    Russ, I know Japanese people who'll give you an argument; they say that "gaijin" means a white person only, and "kokujin" are separate. Mind you, that's because they think all black people come from Darkest Africa and all have bones through their noses... Five minuyes of endless fun watching Japanese-speaking black Americans round on the baba on the train in Osaka for maligning them...

  3. #228
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    Default Re: Heat

    Originally posted by Mekugi
    Wow this is really rolling out of control!


    A little gas to the fire :
    Hakujin and kokojin are all indeed under the classification "gaijin". Not only have they ascertained that these are "foreigners" but also these are people with different skin color. Myself, I am kind of pink actually. I have that Oregon tan that takes years of sunless condition to develop...schnarf.

    On the opposite end you have Nihonjin, who do not designate themselves as a color (yellow-people?)nor do they call themselves gaijin whenever abroad. They simply see themselves as "people". I think that is where "we gaijin" are finding a drift- its not the language especially, but the logic that accompanies the language. However in this case if you become too sensative you will start finding hidden messages in Star Wars- exempli gratia: Darth Vader, a white guy trapped in a black suit. INSIDE WE ALL WANT TO BE WHITE!! (yeah...Mall Rats rules).

    Not everyone in Japan is like this, and it seems that there is a big PC debate about what is and is not proper to say; and perhaps one is right in assuming that sticks and stones may break your bones but names should never hurt you *however* in order to initiate change on the social level, there must fist be an individual awareness of what is being said and why. A education that must start from within. I myself am guilty of being so "un-p.c." at times it would drive the tofu-eating-granola-munching-tree-hugging-vegetarian-pacifist to the point of grabbing a sack lunch, a rifle and heading to a clocktower to wait until I get off work(whew that's a mouthful). That does not mean, however, that I am racist in my heart of hearts, it just means I have to watch what I communicate to people in order to protect their feelings; which from what I understand is what speech in Japanese is supposed to be all about, right? An attempt to speak in a manner to protect the feelings of the individual while conveying a message as politely as possible. As ambiguous a thing that this may seem, it is important to remember that feelings are a big part of the psyche in every person, whether they admit it or not. In that sense, perhaps everyone needs to step back and remind themselves of the emotional stress they can cause another person by viewing them as anything other than another human being; intentionally or otherwise.

    Ehh what the heck do I know anyway...


    -R
    Hey, it was "Chasing Amy" not "Mallrats" where a guy got shot saying all blacks want to be white. Man that was hilarious.

    As far as I can see, gaijin is verbal form of gaikokujin. Certainly refering people of foreing origin as gaikokujin or gaijin all the time would be rude because that indicate one's failure to see person's quality beyond him/her not being Japanese. But that is the same with the word "black", "Chinese guy". What is derogetory is the usage, not the meaning of the word itself.

    As of use of gaijin/gaikoku outside Japan, there is nothing illogical about refering country which is not Japan as gaikoku whereever you are if the word is defined in term of one's country of origin, which is the case both in Japanese and English as indicated by dictionary. Now, if the grammer of particular language strictly limit the meaning of the word "foreign" in term of actual physical location of the person who utter the word then it is different story. However, I again checked few of my non-English friend. The word foreing is more often than not used in term of the person's native country than physical location though both usage is possible.

    If someone English guy in Thailand say

    "Hey, I'm in foreign country."

    This makes perfect sence.

    If someone respond to the above statement with

    "Hey, you are not. Thailand is not foreing country because you are physically there."

    You get "Huh?????" response.

    "Wow, I'm sorrounded by foreing people who doesn't speak English"

    "Hey, you have to see that you are foreinger here not them"

    In this case, the word "foreign" is used in both context. Both are correct usage as long as English grammer goes.


    As of libetarianism, libetarian are both liberal in economic (which naturally lead to market (capitalist if you are more marxist oriented) economy and social aspect (which lead to liberal society). Hence one could claim that libetarianism is the most consistent political theory. However, I have seen quite few who claim to be libetarian who use the argument of libetarianis only when it support their conservative view.
    Last edited by Vapour; 20th October 2003 at 06:24.
    -Youji Hajime.

    Engrish does not mine strong point

  4. #229
    Kimpatsu Guest

    Default Re: Re: Heat

    Originally posted by Vapour
    As far as I can see, gaijin is verbal form of gaikokujin.
    Gaijin isn't a verb, it's a noun.
    And if you use your homespun definition of "libertarian" around real libertarians, they'll hand you your metaphorical head. Just so you know.
    Best,
    Last edited by Kimpatsu; 20th October 2003 at 06:28.

  5. #230
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    Default Re: Re: Re: Heat

    Originally posted by Kimpatsu
    Gaijin isn't a verb, it's a noun.
    And if you use your homespun definition of "libertarian" arounf real libertarians, they'll hand you your metaphorical head. Just so you know.
    Opps, I spelt it wrong. basically I meant oral.

    As of me getting metaphorical head butt, I get along fine among people whose view are generally defined as libetarian.

    As of difference between being conservative about economic policy and being libetarian about economic policy, I tend to see that conservative tend to justify free market mainly on the efficiency while libetarian tend to argue for the free market on the basis of the right to economic freedom which reflect their consistency on both economic and social view.
    Last edited by Vapour; 20th October 2003 at 06:36.
    -Youji Hajime.

    Engrish does not mine strong point

  6. #231
    Kimpatsu Guest

    Default Re: Re: Re: Re: Heat

    Originally posted by Vapour
    Opps, I spelt it wrong. basically I meant oral.
    The antonym of written?

  7. #232
    Mekugi Guest

    Default Re: Re: Heat

    Hey Youji!
    Got me there...it was Chasing Amy...my bad mayann.

    You raise some good points, in my limited ability to communicate (Tony is the man for that....he does have an edge there for sure) in Japanese AND my Commoner's English one really has to peer hard in order to *fully* get the feeling about what one is saying. I can see where you are coming from and I think you raise your points well. Kudos.

    However, and not to be contrary to your thinking- I would like to point to one of my favorite books: Malcom X.

    If you have ever read his biography, you'll see him speaking in his plain toungue. Nothing PC about what he has to say most of the time, pulling no punches. He defines (SIC) "Southern Negros" and uses his father as an example. He outlines the sway of "White America" and how it has been used to exploit not only people of (SIC)"color" but anyone who was willing to put their neck out in good faith. If you look at the context of what he was saying during different venues of his life I found him to be truly racist towards "white people" as well as other "Black people", which makes him no better than the people he found offensive to begin with. It's sad to see that towards the end of his life, that he had wholeheartedly started to realize that not only was there "racism inside of racism" but there was an unending cycle of this type of behavior. He concluded (well at least the book made me think so) that through education, independance and freedom of choice, could ANY man be free of the shackles of racism, bigotry and hatred.

    I would also like to point out the issues of eta and hinin here that have been propugated in Japan since "ancient" times. Racism within racism that has effected people lives within Japan, and that it does occur even here in a homongenous society. Black-balling a person because of their name, heredity or whatever is no better that calling them a foul name.

    So in the end when you both raise your pints of Hopp flavored soda, remember : WE SHOULD ALL HATE THE FRENCH EQUALLY.


    -R
    Originally posted by Vapour
    Hey, it was "Chasing Amy" not "Mallrats" where a guy got shot saying all blacks want to be white. Man that was hilarious.

    As far as I can see, gaijin is verbal form of gaikokujin. Certainly refering people of foreing origin as gaikokujin or gaijin all the time would be rude because that indicate one's failure to see person's quality beyond him/her not being Japanese. But that is the same with the word "black", "Chinese guy". What is derogetory is the usage, not the meaning of the word itself.

    As of use of gaijin/gaikoku outside Japan, there is nothing illogical about refering country which is not Japan as gaikoku whereever you are if the word is defined in term of one's country of origin, which is the case both in Japanese and English as indicated by dictionary. Now, if the grammer of particular language strictly limit the meaning of the word "foreign" in term of actual physical location of the person who utter the word then it is different story. However, I again checked few of my non-English friend. The word foreing is more often than not used in term of the person's native country than physical location though both usage is possible.

    If someone English guy in Thailand say

    "Hey, I'm in foreign country."

    This makes perfect sence.

    If someone respond to the above statement with

    "Hey, you are not. Thailand is not foreing country because you are physically there."

    You get "Huh?????" response.

    "Wow, I'm sorrounded by foreing people who doesn't speak English"

    "Hey, you have to see that you are foreinger here not them"

    In this case, the word "foreign" is used in both context. Both are correct usage as long as English grammer goes.


    As of libetarianism, libetarian are both liberal in economic (which naturally lead to market (capitalist if you are more marxist oriented) economy and social aspect (which lead to liberal society). Hence one could claim that libetarianism is the most consistent political theory. However, I have seen quite few who claim to be libetarian who use the argument of libetarianis only when it support their conservative view.
    Last edited by Mekugi; 20th October 2003 at 08:24.

  8. #233
    Mekugi Guest

    Default

    Indeed. Sometimes I think I am better off not knowing exactly what everyone is *really* saying about me over here. Sure I can catch portions here and there, in the end I am not so sure I want to be totally fluent. (Kind of a bummer huh!)

    I would have paid cash money to see that on the train. There is nothing like seeing someone think they can get away with out-right horrid comments only to have it spewn back at them, perhaps in an even more educated toungue. Classic train entertainment!


    -R

    Originally posted by Kimpatsu
    Russ, I know Japanese people who'll give you an argument; they say that "gaijin" means a white person only, and "kokujin" are separate. Mind you, that's because they think all black people come from Darkest Africa and all have bones through their noses... Five minuyes of endless fun watching Japanese-speaking black Americans round on the baba on the train in Osaka for maligning them...

  9. #234
    Mekugi Guest

    Default Re: Re: Re: Heat

    Note: my spelling is simply dreadful. Please pardon the mis-spellings in the long post to Youji above. YESHH. I cringe to see it....
    Last edited by Mekugi; 20th October 2003 at 08:28.

  10. #235
    Ben Bartlett Guest

    Default Re: Re: Heat

    Originally posted by Vapour

    As of use of gaijin/gaikoku outside Japan, there is nothing illogical about refering country which is not Japan as gaikoku whereever you are if the word is defined in term of one's country of origin, which is the case both in Japanese and English as indicated by dictionary. Now, if the grammer of particular language strictly limit the meaning of the word "foreign" in term of actual physical location of the person who utter the word then it is different story. However, I again checked few of my non-English friend. The word foreing is more often than not used in term of the person's native country than physical location though both usage is possible.
    I can't speak for the English, but Americans don't generally go about calling people "foreigners" in their own country. Come to think of it, I've rarely heard Americans use the word, period. It just sounds derogatory, even if it isn't meant to be, as though you are looking down at another person for being from a different country. And we definitely, definitely don't see a person from another country walk into the room and suddenly exclaim, "AH! Mr. Foreigner!", whereas I definitely had one woman say, "AH! Gaijin-san!" in Japan.

    That said, I'm willing to put up with being called a gaijin in Japan, because a) it's a culture other than my own, and b) unlike poor Tony, I don't live there on a permanent basis. But I wouldn't tolerate being called that in my own country, unless the Japanese person saying it were around, say, eighty, because I'm willing to give some leeway for age.

  11. #236
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    Default

    Originally posted by Kimpatsu
    Why should this be a no-go area?
    I meant we seem to be talking to deaf people.

    Hyakutake Colin
    Hyakutake Colin

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    http://www.hyoho.com

  12. #237
    Kimpatsu Guest

    Default

    Originally posted by hyaku
    I meant we seem to be talking to deaf people.
    Maybe we should shout louder?

  13. #238
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    Default

    I was having net-chat with my mate. He told me that in Britain, police force is not allowed to use word "Oriental" no more because it is derogetory in sence of not differentiating between Japanese, Korean, Mongolian, Vietnamese and so on.

    Also, friend of mine who is teacher tell me that theachers are no longer allowed to use the word "blackboard" because that is offensive.

    And I'm not making this up.
    -Youji Hajime.

    Engrish does not mine strong point

  14. #239
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    Default Re: Re: Re: Heat

    Originally posted by Ben Bartlett
    I can't speak for the English, but Americans don't generally go about calling people "foreigners" in their own country. Come to think of it, I've rarely heard Americans use the word, period.
    This is because American used the word "immigrants" instead. In American mind, foreign countries don't exist.

    I might find the fact that the word foreigner being a derogatory word offensive because that is like saying that being foreign is inherently inferior.
    -Youji Hajime.

    Engrish does not mine strong point

  15. #240
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    Default Re: Re: Re: Heat

    Originally posted by Mekugi
    Hey Youji!
    Got me there...it was Chasing Amy...my bad mayann.

    You raise some good points, in my limited ability to communicate (Tony is the man for that....he does have an edge there for sure) in Japanese AND my Commoner's English one really has to peer hard in order to *fully* get the feeling about what one is saying. I can see where you are coming from and I think you raise your points well. Kudos.

    However, and not to be contrary to your thinking- I would like to point to one of my favorite books: Malcom X.

    If you have ever read his biography, you'll see him speaking in his plain toungue. Nothing PC about what he has to say most of the time, pulling no punches. He defines (SIC) "Southern Negros" and uses his father as an example. He outlines the sway of "White America" and how it has been used to exploit not only people of (SIC)"color" but anyone who was willing to put their neck out in good faith. If you look at the context of what he was saying during different venues of his life I found him to be truly racist towards "white people" as well as other "Black people", which makes him no better than the people he found offensive to begin with. It's sad to see that towards the end of his life, that he had wholeheartedly started to realize that not only was there "racism inside of racism" but there was an unending cycle of this type of behavior. He concluded (well at least the book made me think so) that through education, independance and freedom of choice, could ANY man be free of the shackles of racism, bigotry and hatred.

    I would also like to point out the issues of eta and hinin here that have been propugated in Japan since "ancient" times. Racism within racism that has effected people lives within Japan, and that it does occur even here in a homongenous society. Black-balling a person because of their name, heredity or whatever is no better that calling them a foul name.

    So in the end when you both raise your pints of Hopp flavored soda, remember : WE SHOULD ALL HATE THE FRENCH EQUALLY.


    -R
    -Youji Hajime.

    Engrish does not mine strong point

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