"Wokeist" - When people talk about progressivism without acquaintance

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Angst, May 5, 2022.

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  1. Narz

    Narz keeping it real

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    I grew up listening to hip-hop & never heard the word 'woke'
     
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  2. Narz

    Narz keeping it real

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    Tldw : 'progressives' might benefit from being more of a big tent party & less purity testy. Considering democracy is a popularity contest they might benfit from trying to be more popular.
     
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  3. Akka

    Akka Moody old mage.

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    Okay, we may have missed the earlier point when I asked for example. I wasn't specifically about "insults" by themselves. I was asking about examples of "the right" being able to warp language as you say. To change meaning for words to the general public that aren't specifically from the "woke" wing of the political spectrum.
    Because I see many people making claims about it, but I still don't see such cases. Yeah, the right tried to make "liberal" an insult. It failed. It tried to make anyone left of Reagan a "commie". It also failed. Both are pretty ingrained in the right-wing lingo, but they didn't caught outside, and when someone call you a "liberal" or a "commie" as if they were insults, it tends to tell more about them than about you.

    So I'm still asking for examples of this right-sponsored warping of the language that spilled over the general public.
    I despise attempts at warping language. It's just underhanded manipulation and it's a textbook authoritarian cookbook. So here we are in agreement.
    As for the right being able to direct the language, as above I'm not convinced and awaiting cases that aren't just restricted to the "woke" part of politics.

    That part I completely agree. This is what I'm seeing happening in the language battlefield when it comes to politics.
    The thing is though... I see it mostly precisely from the "woke" subset. All the overuse of the "*ist" and "*ism" words, that are so overused they lose all meaning and impact - I think it was even you who pointed at it ?
    I also saw some regrets about this very behaviour during the recent French election, with people lamenting that there overused "fascists" so much, that basically it became neutered, and as such couldn't "scare" away people anymore when applied to Le Pen.
    Sadly this epiphany doesn't seem to have started a real move of self-criticism beyond this very specific case, but it was rather relevant and revealing.
    As pointed before, you do use "right-wing" (and "left-wing") despite these terms being even more vague, and yet you see what they mean. "woke" cover a subset that is pretty understandable to nearly everyone, it's about a subset of the "left" that is focused on social justice and identity politics. It's actually much less nebulous than many other words you use without problems.

    This attempt to claim the word is meaningless while everyone actually understand what it covers, really feels like a pretext just to reject it because it carries a pejorative undertone. To me the main problem, going hand in hand with the whole "the right somehow manages to direct language" despite the lack of concrete example, seems like an attempt to not look at why it's specifically (and only ?) the words coming from the "woke" side that always seems to become pejorative.
     
  4. Arwon

    Arwon

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    Is that the flasher
     
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  5. EnglishEdward

    EnglishEdward Deity

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    @ Akka

    Many words have very much changed their meaning in my life time.
    Speaking from a UK English perspective.

    Cash

    This used to be paper notes or coins, but now many people regard
    a prompt online bank transaction as cash, as opposed to credit

    Cis

    A word invented to be easily derogative, because certain people weren't happy with "normal".

    Dead Cat

    Used to be a dead feline, but now a red herring.

    Democracy

    That used to be about people voting for decisions, laws or representatives
    or in juries; but in many places it is regarded as rule of law, charters of rights;
    division of power, transparency, with the public voting bit almost forgotten.

    Earnings


    Income used to be divided into unearned income (rents and
    dividends and capital gains) and earned income (wages);
    but earnings is now used as a synonym for nearly all income.

    Gay

    Used to be being happy, jolly, lively.

    Invest, investment.


    It used to mean spend money or time e.g. in machinery or
    land draining or etc. to obtain definitive productive benefits later,
    but it has been co-opted by the capitalist right to include
    property speculation and gambling with crypto-currency.

    Nazism

    Used to mean admirers and followers of Adolf Hitler, but it
    is now used by many merely to emphatically refer to fascism.

    Property


    This used to be something one could pick up, walk over or be inside.
    But lawyers invented intellectual property and financial instruments etc.

    Pegging

    Used to be with camping with tents, hanging laundry to dry or scoring.

    Random

    Used to be a number selected by chance, now often meaning a red herring.

    Their

    Used to imply plural or unknown ownership, but now used where gender/sex of owner is immaterial.

    Wife

    Always used to be female.

    Woke

    A state of being formerly created by amongst other things, alarm clocks.
     
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  6. Gorbles

    Gorbles Load Balanced

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    The "right wing" is a large part of the general public, right? It's not some fringe element - this kind of language is used across the right-of-centre spectrum, and even happily by liberals that have an axe to grind with those left-of-centre. "woke" is used in tabloid papers that a bunch of regular folk read daily. "cancel culture" also. Jeremy Corbyn was portrayed as a Communist (however dramatically overstated the comparison might have been, the point is it was made) by our main state-funded broadcasting body (the BBC), some years back.

    You can't ask for examples that have spilled over to the general public, and then discount them because they're primarily used by "the right".

    Actually, it's merely the Latin opposite to the "trans" prefix, which is in no way derogatory unless you assume "trans" to be. Certainly not "invented" in the slightest.

    Unlike "normal", whose opposite state is "abnormal", which would be a rather derogatory label to apply to trans folk (if "cis" folk are "normal" as you're suggesting).
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2022
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  7. Samson

    Samson Deity

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    I did not realise you are older than the Statute of Monopolies (1624), the Statute of Anne (1710) or the Amsterdam Stock Exchange (1602).
     
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  8. Akka

    Akka Moody old mage.

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    Wat ?
    Sorry guys, but at this point this is just nonsensical, you're flip-flopping from "the right" as a manipulative force which manages to twist the general discourse, to "the right" as being the general discourse itself and as such any term used by "the right" being part of the main discourse, but "the left" on the other hand can't affect the general discourse, so it would mean "the left" is not part of the general discourse, despite this contradicting the very concept that made "the right" the general discourse itself to begin with. WTF.

    Make up your mind, it feels that, in full reverse illustration of the thread, the words and concepts and themes are redefined on the fly from post to post just so the premise of "we're victim of the right manipulations on language" stays fulfilled.
     
  9. Gorbles

    Gorbles Load Balanced

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    I didn't say anything about what "the left" does, or doesn't do. I said nothing about "the right" as a "manipulative force", either. You wanted examples of "the right" redefining phrases that then made their way to the general public. I gave explanations as to how this happened.

    One thing Edward did get right is that language changes over time. Always has done, likely will always continue to. That doesn't mean that language can't be changed in a manipulative or coercive way. A different example of this can be seen in the US (and sometimes elsewhere), where the media really tries its best to avoid saying "a police officer shot someone", using torturous language like "police's firearm found itself discharging in public" or the like. That's an attempt to coerce language (to pre-emptively absolve blame / misrepresent what's happening). The media impacts how people perceive events (by definition), so I don't think I'm stretching here.

    (edited for clarity, mainly the last paragraph)
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2022
  10. Arwon

    Arwon

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    The exonerative tense
     
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  11. Arwon

    Arwon

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    Oh you're older than Chaucer hey
     
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  12. EnglishEdward

    EnglishEdward Deity

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    Ah ha, as expected it is the usual culprits jumping on my reply to @ Akka


    English isn't Latin and referring to English people by Latin terminology is often derogatory.

    I remember being told In one thread that cross dresser was alright but transvestite was not.


    Not necessarily so.

    I wouldn't refer to an Olympic runner as a normal runner, but I wouldn't refer to an Olympic
    runner as an abnormal runner as both terms would be incorrect and IMHO rather rude.


    Looked at first URL only.

    When I was young, most people referred to those things as Patents and as Copyrights.
    I don't recollect the more general grouping term Intellectual Property being used then.
    I dare say it may have been used by American lawyers, but not by ordinary English folk then.


    I dare say it is possible to argue with "their" that modern English has reverted to medieval English.
    Certain English words e.g. skillet were retained in the USA after being largely abandoned in England,
    but when I was young "his" and "hers" were used wherever possible rather than "their".

    But I dunno what happened downunder.

    What I have noticed in my general reading, see book thread, is that in many books "their" has often
    replaced almost exclusively replaced "his" and "her" in reference to single people of known sex/gender.

    Thing is languages change, and it is often for political reasons.
     
  13. Samson

    Samson Deity

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    I never realised the term came to be used so late, and more in the US than the UK, at least by percent of words written. Though we hardly write about copyrights?
    Spoiler NGrams for IP in british and american english :
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2022
  14. EnglishEdward

    EnglishEdward Deity

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    @ Samson

    Thank you for the graphs.

    I was replying from personal memory which apart from being different to others is of course fallible.
     
  15. Hygro

    Hygro soundcloud.com/hygro/

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    yeah why?
     
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  16. Cloud_Strife

    Cloud_Strife Deity

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    What do you mean "Normal"? Are trans people not normal?
     
  17. Hygro

    Hygro soundcloud.com/hygro/

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    I have neuroatypicality, am I normal?
     
  18. Samson

    Samson Deity

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    Who is really "normal"?
     
  19. Cloud_Strife

    Cloud_Strife Deity

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    haha imagine being trans or gay and not normal
     
  20. Farm Boy

    Farm Boy syntax error

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    Looking 'normal' is how people get described after somebody finds kids in their freezer.
     
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