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外人 vs. 外国人

Japanese, general discussion on the language

RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby coco » Tue 06.27.2006 3:42 am

paul_b wrote:
As pointed out earlier in this thread (or the other one),

ポールさん。このスレッドの on 24-06-2006 07:56 投稿分の
See link for reference.にもあります。
また、なるべく同じ話題を同じスレッドでまためた方がよいと考え
別スレッドへの誘導も兼ねてあちらに転記したつもりですが、誘導に失敗してしまいました。
Last edited by coco on Tue 06.27.2006 4:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby two_heads_talking » Tue 06.27.2006 8:39 am

keatonatron wrote:
Harisenbon wrote:
What else would you use to call out to a foreigner who's name you didn't know?


外国の方 :D


and once again the gai pops in.. you see it was the outside part of foreigner that was the part most people were offended with.. gaijin, gaikoku no hito, gaikokujin, gaikoku no kata.. in each case it is just a more polite way to refer to someone from the outside.. with japans history, it didn't really matter you were referred to as a lesser person this way.. as an outsider.

nevertheless, if one is ok inside their skin, then being an outsider is never really an offensive statement. it is correct no matter the level of speach..
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RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby keatonatron » Tue 06.27.2006 9:37 am

two_heads_talking wrote:
and once again the gai pops in.. you see it was the outside part of foreigner that was the part most people were offended with.. gaijin, gaikoku no hito, gaikokujin, gaikoku no kata.. in each case it is just a more polite way to refer to someone from the outside..


No no no, you must have not read my other post on "gaijin". "Gaikokujin" means "person from a foreign country." No problems there. "Gaijin" doesn't only mean "foreigner," but "person outside my social circle". In Japanese culture, people who are outside your circle are treated completely differently. With people outisde your circle, you will never show your feelings, you will never complain, you will never do favors, you will never use a first name. Can you imagine going through life being outside the circle of every person you meet, even with people you see everyday?
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RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby two_heads_talking » Tue 06.27.2006 10:12 am

ACTUALLY, gaikokujin is outside ones country which is also outside ones circle which means traditionally even more contempt etc.. even japanese were referred to as gaijin if they were not of the clan etc..

i have been outside the circle on many occassions. being american in japan is just such a thing. being ainu in japan is very much the same thing. but this is not the place to discuss inner japanese cultural segregation, so i will let it end here..

remember the word gai means outside.. whether you add country, person, honorable person, etc.. it still means outside..
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RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby Mukade » Tue 06.27.2006 10:39 am

Harisenbon wrote:
What would you call someone you didn't know who isn't a foreigner? Why should it be necessary to point out the obvious fact that someone is a foreigner unless to you it has some kind of either stigma or some kind of aura of weirdness?


This is that whole, "It's a different culture" thing that I was talking about.
You're not pointing out the fact that they are a foreigner, you're referring to them in a way that they are sure to know that who you are talking about.

You go into a store, and you are referred to as kyakusama (customer). It's no different.


So I walk into a store and see an old man, an old woman, and an African, and it's okay to say "hey, Mr. blackie," because that's the most obvious way to get his attention?

I see nothing wrong with someone using "oniisan" or "ojisan" with me. There's no reason I should have to be treated differently.
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RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby AJBryant » Tue 06.27.2006 10:51 am

You know, when I was at Tokyo Journal, we had an in-house reference for people who would regularly write offended letters about JUST A FREAKING JAPANESE WORD to the newspapers or us, as if it was some great secret understanding.

We called them "the professionally sensitive."

Look, "gaijin" is just the word for foreigner. Get over it. The etymology is no more or less sinister or offensive than the German "auslander" or the English "foreigner." What is foreign? It is something that is not part of where it is, an alien element. Think about it. Foreign substances. Foreign affairs. Foreigner. Big woop.

Remember how I always say not to get caught up in literalizing the Japanese language you're learning? This is a classical example.

A "gaijin" is a person who is not native. That's exactly what a foreigner is. That's exactly what an auslander is. Hell, no one complains that the French "etranger" has "strange" at its root, and people who complain about the "gai" sound just as silly as people complaining that France is calling every foreigner "strange."

Christ.


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RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby two_heads_talking » Tue 06.27.2006 12:54 pm

AJBryant wrote:


A "gaijin" is a person who is not native. That's exactly what a foreigner is. That's exactly what an auslander is. Hell, no one complains that the French "etranger" has "strange" at its root, and people who complain about the "gai" sound just as silly as people complaining that France is calling every foreigner "strange."

Christ.


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RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby hyperconjugated » Tue 06.27.2006 1:09 pm

The bi-monthly gaijin-discussion strikes again.
*winding a clock*
Last edited by hyperconjugated on Tue 06.27.2006 1:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby Mukade » Tue 06.27.2006 7:31 pm

I don't care what the word means or what its etymology is.

I care about how it's used.

If I'm watching a news program and they're talking about an increase in foreign workers, or a rally for (or against) letting more foreigners into Japan, I don't care that they use the word gaijin.



However, in that previous example, if someone walks into a store and sees an old man, an old woman and a whitey (me), what's wrong with saying "Excuse me, sir?"

This is what they would use with anyone else. But because I'm white (i.e., non-Japanese), it suddenly becomes "Excuse me, Mr. Outsider?"

THAT is what I find offensive. Not the meaning of the word, and not the general usage of the word, but the marginalization that comes of a particular use of that word.
Last edited by Mukade on Tue 06.27.2006 7:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby keatonatron » Wed 06.28.2006 2:30 am

Mukade wrote:
I don't care what the word means or what its etymology is.

I care about how it's used.

If I'm watching a news program and they're talking about an increase in foreign workers, or a rally for (or against) letting more foreigners into Japan, I don't care that they use the word gaijin.



However, in that previous example, if someone walks into a store and sees an old man, an old woman and a whitey (me), what's wrong with saying "Excuse me, sir?"

This is what they would use with anyone else. But because I'm white (i.e., non-Japanese), it suddenly becomes "Excuse me, Mr. Outsider?"

THAT is what I find offensive. Not the meaning of the word, and not the general usage of the word, but the marginalization that comes of a particular use of that word.


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RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby SenescenceReign » Mon 06.11.2007 6:05 pm

[center]This seems like an example of people juxtaposing our own politically correct hyperexamination (I can make up words, hush) onto another language as well as culture. Shouldn't we leave well enough alone and assume that, like in every other circumstance, to become outraged over a word just because it's a word is pointless? Without knowing the mindset or even the emotional content of the word as it's being said in everyday life, how can you assume it's negative? Like the word "wicked" when you think something is cool? It's the same principle- "gaijin" could simply mean that. "Foreign person". I don't mind being a foreign person; and with that recognition I expect there are going to be words used that I might not necessarily "get" with my own cultural and ethnic background.

And from what little I understand about Japanese, I've already discerned that pretty much everything is in contextual. So let's all put down our sharp sharp prejudice-weapons, shall we?[/center]
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RE: 外人 vs. 外国人

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Mon 06.11.2007 7:22 pm

WOW. This is almost a one year necropost. I have seen worse in the past, but it's rare. Can the admins lock this thread?
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