how do you explain the *n*-word + its history to toddlers ? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 8 Old 08-09-2010, 07:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
whooopsy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: northern GERMANY
Posts: 214
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
dd (4,5 yrs.) is multiracial - i am white, her dad is black, she is brown.

we are always up to give her a good self-feeling about her look and family-history.

now she is listening to a cd of an old version of pippi longstocking, where pippis dad is described as the *n---*-king of takka tukka land. i cannot delete that word so dd heard it - and innocently repeated it when playing.

i want to explain to her why this word is not be used and what history is there behind it. i just couldnt find the right word.

how do you explain this children-like?

Me with the wonder of my life (2/06) * : * : * * * ...surfin' together on the wave of life : ...
whooopsy is offline  
#2 of 8 Old 08-09-2010, 10:58 AM
 
cappuccinosmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: SW Pennsylvania
Posts: 5,628
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
That is is an old word that used to be used to describe people of color, and because it was so closely connected to slavery, discrimination, and segregation (maybe for 4 yo, "hurting and rejecting people based on the color of their skin"), it is not an OK word to use. Some people use it now, and it is very disrespectful and an ugly thing to say. That's how I approached it when my kids heard the word while listening to Huck Finn. It was an abridged version for kids, I had assumed (wrongly) that they would have edited the word out.
cappuccinosmom is offline  
#3 of 8 Old 08-09-2010, 05:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
whooopsy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: northern GERMANY
Posts: 214
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
thank you, that sounds good!

Quote:
Originally Posted by cappuccinosmom View Post
That's how I approached it when my kids heard the word while listening to Huck Finn. It was an abridged version for kids, I had assumed (wrongly) that they would have edited the word out.
yeah, same here. i was so surprised when i heard that word, better: shocked!

i found out that in the very new versions of pippi longstocking they deleted that word. it took them a long time to do so.

Me with the wonder of my life (2/06) * : * : * * * ...surfin' together on the wave of life : ...
whooopsy is offline  
#4 of 8 Old 08-09-2010, 05:13 PM
 
philomom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 9,431
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Doesn't the word come from the Spanish meaning black?
philomom is offline  
#5 of 8 Old 08-10-2010, 10:27 AM
 
cappuccinosmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: SW Pennsylvania
Posts: 5,628
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Yes it does.

It might at one time have been fairly innocuous. I think there are still languages where the root word is still used and it's not an issue.
cappuccinosmom is offline  
#6 of 8 Old 08-14-2010, 02:44 AM
 
eepster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: growing in the Garden State ............
Posts: 9,010
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by cappuccinosmom View Post
Yes it does.

It might at one time have been fairly innocuous. I think there are still languages where the root word is still used and it's not an issue.
The out dated but not specifically offensive word "Negro" comes from Spanish, but I'm not sure that the N word is directly from Spanish. There is a fairly old word in English (it is in Shakespeare) that mean cowardly, that I have often wondered if it might have come from, and been chosen b/c of it's similarity to "Negro." It is basically the N word with an LY tacked on the end of it.

Here is an example of it being used in Shakespeare
Quote:
Well, 'tis not so, my lord high constable;
But though we think it so, it is no matter:
In cases of defence 'tis best to weigh
The enemy more mighty than he seems:
So the proportions of defence are fill'd;
Which of a weak or niggardly projection
Doth, like a miser, spoil his coat with scanting
A little cloth.
From Henry V

So, I think there may be more to the words offensiveness than simply being an outdated term. Just as the F word isn't just an outdated term for Gay people, it is a direct reference to burning them on the stake.

Timmy's Mommy WARNINGyslexic typing with help of preschooler, beware of typos
eepster is offline  
#7 of 8 Old 08-14-2010, 03:22 AM
 
Liquesce's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Mayberry
Posts: 4,963
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by eepster View Post
The out dated but not specifically offensive word "Negro" comes from Spanish, but I'm not sure that the N word is directly from Spanish. There is a fairly old word in English (it is in Shakespeare) that mean cowardly, that I have often wondered if it might have come from, and been chosen b/c of it's similarity to "Negro." It is basically the N word with an LY tacked on the end of it.
As far as I know it is widely accepted that the pejorative in question and niggardly have unrelated etymologies.
Liquesce is offline  
#8 of 8 Old 08-17-2010, 12:47 AM
 
rredhead's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Antioch, CA
Posts: 469
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Niggardly and "the n word" do not have a common etymology.
http://transracial.adoptionblogs.com...-spade-a-spade

Thank you cappuccinosmom for the suggestion. I'm going to file it away for when my son hears it...

~ Robyn

Mom to Jackson, b. January 2006

and Cassandra, b. October 2011

 

weadopted.gif novaxnocirc.gif

http://chittisterchildren.wordpress.com

rredhead is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off