Blog Archives

Expats and immigrants: How we talk about human migration

On Friday, the Guardian published an article by Mawuna Remarque Koutonin arguing that the word expat (short for “expatriate”) is a label “reserved exclusively for western white people going to work abroad”. According to Koutonin, the word immigrant is set aside for everyone else —

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Posted in Language and race, Language and social class

Naming whiteness: A data-driven history of the New York Times’ racial labeling (part 3)

In two previous posts, I examined the New York Times’ (NYT) use of racial labels for African Americans and Latin@s (Latinos or Latinas) using NYT Labs’ tool, Chronicle. I found that the NYT has changed the labels they’ve used for these groups over

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Posted in Language and race, Media discourse and media bias

What to call the Other: A data-driven history of the New York Times’ racial labeling (part 2)

In a previous post, I examined the New York Times’ (NYT) use of racial labels for African Americans using NYT Labs’ tool Chronicle. In this post, I expand on that work and look at another racial minority in the US: Latin@s. Latin@s is

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Posted in Language and race, Media discourse and media bias

Formality of language, power, and African American English

Yesterday, I read Jamelle Bouie’s great article on Slate responding to arguments about the notion of “talking White” (or “acting White”), or the idea that African Americans are opposed to things like ‘standard’ English or even academic success because they are associated, in our collective

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Posted in Language and race

What to call the Other: A data-driven history of the New York Times’ racial labeling

The word negro makes me uncomfortable. I never hear it, but I occasionally read it. There’s a pretty famous book by sociolinguist Walt Wolfram (Professor of English, North Carolina State University) called A Sociolinguistic Description of Detroit Negro Speech published in 1969. Every time

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Posted in Language and race, Media discourse and media bias

Who is articulate?: Biased perceptions of language

A while back, I read H. Samy Alim and Geneva Smitherman‘s excellent book Articulate While Black. The book takes an in-depth look at racialized public reaction to Barack Obama especially as a candidate for president. One phenomenon they explore is the use of the

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Posted in Language and politics, Language and race, Media discourse and media bias

Gizoogle: Amusing tribute or racist caricature? – NSFW (part 2)

In my last post, I took up the question of whether the website Gizoogle (see the previous post for an explanation of it) is an amusing tribute to hip-hop artist Snoop Dogg, a racist caricature of African American English (AAE),

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Posted in Ideology and social change, Language and race, Linguistic diversity, Technology and language

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