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LINGUIST List 16.2870

Wed Oct 05 2005

Media: Origin of Term 'redskin'

Editor for this issue: Amy Renaud <renaudlinguistlist.org>

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        1.    Paul Fallon, Origin of Term 'redskin'

Message 1: Origin of Term 'redskin'
Date: 03-Oct-2005
From: Paul Fallon <pfallonumw.edu>
Subject: Origin of Term 'redskin'

The October 3rd Washington Post contains an article on page A3 by Guy
Gugliotta on Algonquian linguist Ives Goddard's research on the origin of
the term 'redskin', along with reaction from Native American activists who
oppose the current use of the term.

An extract:
'Smithsonian Institution senior linguist Ives Goddard spent seven months
researching its history and concluded that 'redskin' was first used by
Native Americans in the 18th century to distinguish themselves from the
white 'other' encroaching on their lands and culture.

'When it first appeared as an English expression in the early 1800s, 'it
came in the most respectful context and at the highest level,' Goddard said
in an interview. 'These are white people and Indians talking together, with
the white people trying to ingratiate themselves.'

Goddard also claims that the earliest citation (used in the OED) is a fake.
Goddard's scholarly article appears in the European Review of Native
American Studies.

The Washington Post article is available (with free registration) for two
weeks from the date of publication.

The URL is:

--Paul D. Fallon
Asst. Prof.
Dept. of English, Linguistics, and Speech
University of Mary Washington
1301 College Avenue
Fredericksburg VA 22401

Linguistic Field(s): Lexicography

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