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  #1  
Old 10-28-2007, 08:12 AM
minique minique is offline
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What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

I have no idea why "Oriental" is not approriate to refer to East Asian people. Because Asia is so diverse, "Asian" (like in Asian American, Asian Canadian...) seems to broad to identify East Asian people. So why not "Oriental"? Can anyone tell me the reason why and when this term were put down?

Second, I think the term "Mongoloids" should be abandoned because it has another offensive meaning (people of Down syndrome, though old-fashioned) besides the main one to refer to East Asians, which theoretically resemble Mongolian people. However, even Mongolians are well diverse with various phenotypes.

So defining people based on a particular geography (with similar cultures and phenotypes, of course) is more approriate and acceptable, I think.
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Old 10-28-2007, 08:18 AM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

where are you from?
ppl dont say "asian", or "oriental", and especially not "mongoloids"
if you meet ppl this smart, then you should feel lucky.
most of the time they just say LOOK CHINESE
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Old 10-28-2007, 09:30 AM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

dear mr. other:

a REAL asian would NEVER ask this question because a REAL asian would know that a hole will open up, the god of the underworld will appear, and claim his/her soul.

and mongoloid? seriously? are you reading some sort of 1800s textbook or something? who the fuck uses these words anymore? next you will probably complain about the phrase "23 skidoo" or the new dance craze called "the twist".

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Old 10-28-2007, 08:29 PM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

jeez whats with the rude responses...


minique- "oriental" refers to objects (ie rugs)

it is considered a derogatory term in the US when calling people "oriental".

i know that Englanders use that term to refer to east asians, while they use the term "asian" to refer to indians/other south asians.
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Old 10-28-2007, 08:58 PM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by eos View Post
dear mr. other:

a REAL asian would NEVER ask this question because a REAL asian would know that a hole will open up, the god of the underworld will appear, and claim his/her soul.

and mongoloid? seriously? are you reading some sort of 1800s textbook or something? who the fuck uses these words anymore? next you will probably complain about the phrase "23 skidoo" or the new dance craze called "the twist".

sincerely,

an asian-american from the 21st century

If u google the term "mongoloid" u'll see that its still being used in many many sites, academic or non-academic. It's also being used in history or geography books taught in schools of many Asian countries to stand in 3-4 "major races" (Caucasoid, Mongoloid, Negroid...). Those "race" stuffs by insane European anthropoplogist are defenitely outdated and prejudicial. But they are still being used by many people, including East Asians. It's a shame that we still fill up our children's mind with those stuffs.
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Old 10-28-2007, 10:03 PM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

There's a book by Edward Said called Orientalism, which I think provides some good insight into the term. I would've written an essay about it and come up with the term myself (which I still did), but he beat me to the punch :(

But basically, "oriental" is mainly offensive because a) it objectifies (as bunny4 said), and b) the underlying concepts "other" (used as a verb here) those who are pushed into this category of "orientals." Basically, the term was created to distinguish the exotic, savage east from the civilized west. Does that make sense? I'm probably leaving something out here..
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Old 10-29-2007, 04:13 PM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by tripostrophe View Post
There's a book by Edward Said called Orientalism, which I think provides some good insight into the term. I would've written an essay about it and come up with the term myself (which I still did), but he beat me to the punch :(

But basically, "oriental" is mainly offensive because a) it objectifies (as bunny4 said), and b) the underlying concepts "other" (used as a verb here) those who are pushed into this category of "orientals." Basically, the term was created to distinguish the exotic, savage east from the civilized west. Does that make sense? I'm probably leaving something out here..
Not as as far as my Asian American Studies class lecture notes had to tell me re: Edward Said. =P I need to re-read that work of his.
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  #8  
Old 10-29-2007, 04:58 PM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

this has been discussed.
http://forums.yellowworld.org/showthread.php?t=28463
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Old 10-30-2007, 06:34 PM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by bunny4 View Post


it is considered a derogatory term in the US when calling people "oriental".

.

Uh-oh! I'm in trouble now!

I'm Caucasian, born and raised in the USA. <<< Just for background.

I had no idea the word is offensive.

I use "Oriental" when I am unsure of a person's nationality, but it appears to me that the person is from somewhere east of Europe, and somewhere west of the Pacific Ocean.

If I'm sure the person is from the largest continent, I might refer to them as Asians.

My mistake! I thought I was being polite.

And then we have "Jap". I never considered it an offense to use that word, but it seems lately that it has become politically incorrect to use it to refer to a product (Jap motorcycle) or a person, as in "Yes, he's a Jap."

As far as being offensive goes, I am not much on using a person's nationality or race as an insult. I never call black people nigger, but I don't mind the use of the word in a discussion such as this. I'd never say to someone who wronged me "You stupid Jap!" or "You ignorant Mexican!" or "Damn you, White Boy."

Just not my style.

So tell me, am I (Have I been) wrong to use "Oriental" as a descriptor of people from the east?

In the proper context, and not trying to be mean, is it really so wrong and so bad for me to call my friend Tomio a Jap? An Oriental?
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Old 10-30-2007, 06:43 PM
chuckcZRX chuckcZRX is offline
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by tripostrophe View Post


But basically, "oriental" is mainly offensive because a) it objectifies (as bunny4 said), and b) the underlying concepts "other" (used as a verb here) those who are pushed into this category of "orientals." Basically, the term was created to distinguish the exotic, savage east from the civilized west. Does that make sense? I'm probably leaving something out here..

Objectifies? Sometimes an object is needed. I wouldn't say "An oriental man came into our store today. He bought all of our ice cream." if his race or nationality had nothing to do with the story. Same with Negroes, Mexicans, Australians...

If the story had an element that required knowing nationality or race then I'd add it, but not "just because".

As far as "othering" people goes, my intentions are usually benign. I have always enjoyed traveling, and always enjoy meeting people from other places. Your "other", to me, is what you are, and, in my opinion, is something you should be proud of. Your "other", to me, is a source of knowledge about the world we live in. The stories of your life and times in the land of "other" have always been educational, enlightening, and interesting - all in a good way.

Savage beasts? I never thought of it that way. Only as a descriptor, when one is required.
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Old 10-30-2007, 08:11 PM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

how old are you exactly? Do you understand the term objectification in relation to women? Reducing a person to less than their whole is the basic concept I'm driving at -- by calling someone oriental, you're defining them not as an individual, but as a member of an outgroup that you (willingly) have little to no understanding of. And as for your other comment -- consider how often you describe a person as white. White is the default race in most conversations, is it not? For example, it's much more common to talk about the "big Black dude" than "the huge White dude," as the white one would often be described on other terms not related to his ethnicity (e.g. football player), whereas since "Black" sticks out in peoples' minds more as unusual, it will often be used in place of such terms.

And intent is never the end of the story -- you should know this. And do you realize that you're being offensive when you tell us that your "other," to me, is what you are? Just because we are Asian American does not mean that we identify with Asian cultures. Especially so with later generations, and those who were not raised in an Asian household.

And your last comment makes me think you're a troll.

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by chuckcZRX View Post
Objectifies? Sometimes an object is needed. I wouldn't say "An oriental man came into our store today. He bought all of our ice cream." if his race or nationality had nothing to do with the story. Same with Negroes, Mexicans, Australians...

If the story had an element that required knowing nationality or race then I'd add it, but not "just because".

As far as "othering" people goes, my intentions are usually benign. I have always enjoyed traveling, and always enjoy meeting people from other places. Your "other", to me, is what you are, and, in my opinion, is something you should be proud of. Your "other", to me, is a source of knowledge about the world we live in. The stories of your life and times in the land of "other" have always been educational, enlightening, and interesting - all in a good way.

Savage beasts? I never thought of it that way. Only as a descriptor, when one is required.
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Old 10-30-2007, 08:13 PM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

Check out the history behind the word Caucasian. "Jap" has been offensive since the US Gov't started using it as a slur against Japanese Americans in WWII propaganda. So yes, you're wrong in using both terms. I don't think this is the proper place for you to be educated. Check out Racialicious. Read the aforementioned book, and something by Cornell West. And Tim Wise.

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by chuckcZRX View Post
Uh-oh! I'm in trouble now!

I'm Caucasian, born and raised in the USA. <<< Just for background.

I had no idea the word is offensive.

I use "Oriental" when I am unsure of a person's nationality, but it appears to me that the person is from somewhere east of Europe, and somewhere west of the Pacific Ocean.

If I'm sure the person is from the largest continent, I might refer to them as Asians.

My mistake! I thought I was being polite.

And then we have "Jap". I never considered it an offense to use that word, but it seems lately that it has become politically incorrect to use it to refer to a product (Jap motorcycle) or a person, as in "Yes, he's a Jap."

As far as being offensive goes, I am not much on using a person's nationality or race as an insult. I never call black people nigger, but I don't mind the use of the word in a discussion such as this. I'd never say to someone who wronged me "You stupid Jap!" or "You ignorant Mexican!" or "Damn you, White Boy."

Just not my style.

So tell me, am I (Have I been) wrong to use "Oriental" as a descriptor of people from the east?

In the proper context, and not trying to be mean, is it really so wrong and so bad for me to call my friend Tomio a Jap? An Oriental?
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Old 10-30-2007, 11:10 PM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

chuckcZRX...let's just forget your past offenses and intent. Now you know it's wrong, so stop just saying it. You're only perpetuating society and your own ignorance when you do.

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by tripostrophe View Post
And your last comment makes me think you're a troll.
In my experience, this isn't a troll, just the common ignorance of America.
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Old 10-30-2007, 11:32 PM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by nameless View Post
chuckcZRX...let's just forget your past offenses and intent. Now you know it's wrong, so stop just saying it. You're only perpetuating society and your own ignorance when you do.
good advice. and also, if i may add.
this "other" business is also getting offensive.
most of us were born and raised here.
we don't have many exotic stories involving
the times and life in the land of "other"
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Old 10-31-2007, 12:34 AM
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Re: What is wrong with the term "Oriental"?

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by chuckcZRX View Post
Objectifies? Sometimes an object is needed. I wouldn't say "An oriental man came into our store today. He bought all of our ice cream." if his race or nationality had nothing to do with the story. Same with Negroes, Mexicans, Australians...

If the story had an element that required knowing nationality or race then I'd add it, but not "just because".

As far as "othering" people goes, my intentions are usually benign. I have always enjoyed traveling, and always enjoy meeting people from other places. Your "other", to me, is what you are, and, in my opinion, is something you should be proud of. Your "other", to me, is a source of knowledge about the world we live in. The stories of your life and times in the land of "other" have always been educational, enlightening, and interesting - all in a good way.

Savage beasts? I never thought of it that way. Only as a descriptor, when one is required.
Did you just say Negro? You sound like you've never been to school, Gringo.

What is it with gringos and their obsession with "other foreign lands" anyway?
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