Clarification Requested (was: Teaching about language)

Mr. E (jackechs@EROLS.COM)
Sat, 10 Feb 1996 21:10:28 -0500

I think I'm finally getting an accurate picture of this. It's to bad that
the good doctor closed her mind on my request earlier for further
information on this and immediately assumed that I was a feminist-baiter. I
can agree with this premis on one level. Addressing a people by current
accepted terms is appropriate. However, it should be made clear what the
people of the time preferred to be called. I still do not fully understand
how this relates directly to anthropology versus good behavior, maybe
someone can enlighten me. I could and I feel that others could as well be
"concerned with contemporary linguistic issues" if we knew why we should as
anthropologists outside of being polite conversationalists. I always strive
to be sensative in what and how I communicate my thoughts in regards to sex,
race and ethnicity. However, coming from a family that on one side fought
in the American Revolution and on the other side had it's culture taken from
it; I fight like hell when someone tells me what I have to do or say. A
weakness? Maybe, but if a willness to share information had existed instead
of prejudice alot of the recent non-anthropological postings would not have
taken place. A very wise social studies teacher taught me a very important
lesson early in my life. Yes, evil and ignorance exists in the world. Only
we can judge (be prepared to except that you may be wrong) what that is and
do our best to fight against it. However, there is a very fine line between
fighting evil and becoming evil ... in essence replacing the old with the
new. I believe the current terminology is reverse-racism as well as

The anthropological point to this ... how does "contemporary linguistic
issues" relate to anthropology directly? While it is obvious to me that we
should be sensative and conduct ourselves in such a matter in our day-to-day
interactions with our peers in civilized society; I do not clearly see where
anthropology directly relates to this. Why it's an anthropologists
responsibility to do so outside of being a human in itself. Any ideas?

At 08:26 PM 02/10/96 -0500, Ruby Rohrlich wrote:
>Congratulations. You seem to be one of the few anthropologists on the
>net who is concerned with contemporary linguistic issues. I requested a
>repeat of your post because I think it is important. It was defnitely
>not too long. Best wishes. Ruby Rohrlich

respectfully submitted,

Anthony Dauer

"We have met the enemy, and he is us." Walt Kelly (1913-1973), Pogo

Copyright 1996 Anthony Dean Dauer. All rights reserved.