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Re: [SciFiNoir Lit] New 'Sambo' Version Stirs Old Criticism

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  • SEBARNES@aol.com
    I think that the story is fine, but the only way the inevitable problems could be avoided is by changing the name Sambo. The meaning of a word is found in
    Message 1 of 2 , Jan 2, 2004
      I think that the story is fine, but the only way the inevitable problems
      could be avoided is by changing the name "Sambo." The meaning of a word is found
      in its referents, and culturally, the amount of negative baggage associated
      with the term far outweighs the positive. Who is the market for this product?
      The idea that such a children's book would be purchased by large numbers of
      black people to read to their children is almost inconceivable. This woman
      probably means well, but she might as well create a book for little girls
      titled "Suzy, the sweet little cunt", figuring to "re-claim" that particular
      four-letter-word. Why not merely change the name to "The Adventure of Ali" or
      some such neutral name. Same story, minus the offensive connotation. All the
      positive benifits, none of the negative.

      Steve


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Club Services
      Curious Yellow Hello!  :) Again, this is a difficult one! :) At school, even recently (2000 ... Wheeling Jesuit University) ... I just could not sit still for
      Message 2 of 2 , Jan 2, 2004
        Curious Yellow

        Hello!� :)

        Again, this is a difficult one! :) At school,
        even recently (2000 ... Wheeling Jesuit
        University) ... I just could not sit still for
        the Faulkner: "Nigger this and nigger that ..."�
        I'd always leave the class until the discussion
        or reading was over.� I felt backwards in doing
        this ... yet ...
        Like the Johnny Cochran "I would be remiss .."
        speech I'm not personally bothered by people
        saying, "Nigger," or "Sambo," or whatever they
        choose to say ... but there is usually something
        that gets under my ... well ... SKIN :) when
        these words appear in literature.�
        Why?� Is it when these words are used to tear
        something up?� Is it when these words are used to
        show how things were or are in a particular place
        or time?� Is it when these words are casually
        passed on to our children?
        To me ... any word is available as a tool.� I
        believe when General W. Clark publicly and on
        camera used the word "... ****," this was OK.
        If you use the Microsoft on line dictionary, and
        type in "jap," or I assume any other pejorative,
        you get an admonition ... not a definition.� I
        LIKE that ... ???� I do.� But ... I don't
        understand my own varied reactions: Here it is OK
        here it is not.
        I don't know if this is an archaic� reaction or
        not ... but something in me just sometimes balks
        at that point.� AND I'm not consistent with it
        either.� I mean, sometimes, even written, it is
        fine with me to see and yes, use whatever words
        ... but then ... sure it is in the context but
        I'm not sure about the science ... there are
        times and words which just give an unwelcome
        jolt.� Your use of the word "cunt" for example,
        is very strong.� Yes, yes ... as an example of
        what not to do ... but the very appearance of
        this word makes me uncomfortable.
        To use "Sambo" now ... I don't know ... it might
        actually be OK.� What did you think if you saw Al
        Sharpton on Saturday night live ... parodying
        stereotyped skits of yore?� I was uncomfortable
        ... yet ... I'm not uncomfortable when I actually
        see that old stuff: "Uh ... Yas SIR, Mr. Erwin,
        SIR!"� It was stupid then it is stupid now ....
        How about when a Hare Krsna bigot (Oxymoron)
        approached me at New Vrindabana� and hissed,
        "Jiva ... do you want to know what they say about
        you around here?� Do you want to know what they
        really say?"
        "What?" I responded.
        "Jiva?" he returned.� "They say ... �jiva ...
        he's just another nigger."
        I felt and stated that that person had the
        problem ...
        Maybe then people should just go ahead and
        publish whatever they want and sink or swim by
        and with it.
        In the military, and growing up, it was clear
        that "nigger" was / is a word to immediately go
        to blows over.
        Ah ... I feel another story brewing.� Got to
        write got to write got to write ... :)
        I would not call a work of mine ... Sambo, or
        Rastus, but you know what?� If I saw such a work
        ... I'd be (more contradiction ... curious
        Respectfully
        jivajiva (President Club Services)


        SEBARNES@... wrote:
        I think that the story is fine, but the only way
        the inevitable problems
        could be avoided is by changing the name
        "Sambo."�� The meaning of a word is found
        in its referents, and culturally, the amount of
        negative baggage associated
        with the term far outweighs the positive.�� Who
        is the market for this product?
        � The idea that such a children's book would be
        purchased by large numbers of
        black people to read to their children is almost
        inconceivable.��� This woman
        probably means well, but she might as well create
        a book for little girls
        titled "Suzy, the sweet little cunt", figuring to
        "re-claim" that particular
        four-letter-word.�� Why not merely change the
        name to "The Adventure of Ali" or
        some such neutral name.�� Same story, minus the
        offensive connotation.�� All the
        positive benifits, none of the negative.

        Steve


        [Non-text portions of this message have been
        removed]



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