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Lolai Brin
July 16th, 2014, 15:43
It recently came to my attention that an English professor here at my college is teaching the Japanese students not to use the phrase "native speaker". She says that the term "native" is offensive and degrading.

I have never heard of this opinion before. It's a very common term, or at least it is in the US. She is British, so I am wondering if it is just a difference between cultures?

Has anyone else heard of this? Or is she just a special snowflake?

yingyangryder
July 16th, 2014, 15:44
I`m British and I don`t take offense to it....

Jiggit
July 16th, 2014, 15:45
1 Timothy 2:12 I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. (http://biblehub.com/1_timothy/2-12.htm)

This is why, people.

Antonath
July 16th, 2014, 15:53
I don't see a problem with it. The only time "native" is a dodgy word is when people get all colonial and start talking about "the natives".

word
July 16th, 2014, 15:54
Yeh I think she's a basket case. I've never heard anyone say that the term is offensive.

There was an ALT near me last year who seemed to think that half the English language was offensive; sometimes people are just weird.

Ini
July 16th, 2014, 15:54
so you could be raised from a young age in a country, be totally fluent but because of your passport you're not a "native speaker"? Racist!!!!

Jiggit
July 16th, 2014, 15:55
How is it offensive btw? Does she just not understand what it means? How the hell else would you say it?

mothy
July 16th, 2014, 16:02
Yeah, I think the jackoff is confusing native with the natives. Even then I don't find it offensive, but at least then there's an argument to be made.

ihatefall
July 16th, 2014, 16:44
Unless Timothy 2:12 sensei is thinking it's offensive because a learner of a language can never be a native and thus the native has the upper hand? If so even that is bullshit.

My father speak English at a higher level than most native speaker.

That teacher needs to STFU have her creditability checked.

Jordaius
July 16th, 2014, 16:46
How the hell else would you say it?

indian speaker

mrcharisma
July 16th, 2014, 16:51
My father speak English at a higher level than most native speaker.



Good to see fluency runs in the family.

ihatefall
July 16th, 2014, 16:59
Good to see fluency runs in the family.

I's makes the English good

SomePeopleJustSaySnow
July 16th, 2014, 17:32
I don't think her being British has anything more to do with it than her being crazy.

Her being British may have helped her become crazy, but still... No. it's not offensive. And if anybody tells you that it is, punch them in the face repeatedly until you knock some sense into them.

Ini
July 16th, 2014, 17:45
so now you are white knighting this limey cunt? jesus snow, give it a rest already

SomePeopleJustSaySnow
July 16th, 2014, 18:01
Surely I'm actually white-knighting the word 'Native'?

Jordaius
July 16th, 2014, 18:11
I find "white-knighting" offensive. Why's it gotta be white-knighting, and not fuchsia-knighting or turquoise-knighting, huh? Huh?

SomePeopleJustSaySnow
July 16th, 2014, 18:13
I find "white-knighting" offensive. Why's it gotta be white-knighting, and not fuchsia-knighting or turquoise-knighting, huh? Huh?

We do already have a resident rainbow knight...

Jordaius
July 16th, 2014, 18:20
We do already have a resident rainbow knight...

So what does rainbow-knighting entail?

SomePeopleJustSaySnow
July 16th, 2014, 18:27
So what does rainbow-knighting entail?

A lot longer making a suit of armour.

Jiggit
July 16th, 2014, 18:28
So what does rainbow-knighting entail?

Arguing in support of anyone who vaguely falls under the LGBTQAH spectrum regardless of how bonkers and hateful they are in their SJWing.

therealwindycity
July 16th, 2014, 18:38
Who did I support that was bonkers and hateful?

SomePeopleJustSaySnow
July 16th, 2014, 18:39
CoughSarkeesianCough

therealwindycity
July 16th, 2014, 19:21
Sheesh, you men really know how to hold a grudge, don't you?

SomePeopleJustSaySnow
July 16th, 2014, 19:27
Sheesh, you men really know how to hold a grudge, don't you?

Windy! If anybody else attacked you for liking her I would obviously spring to your defence.

... and you did ask. :)

mothy
July 16th, 2014, 19:37
It's ok windbag. You're rainbow knighting out of love so it's cool my brother.

therealwindycity
July 16th, 2014, 19:53
I'll rainbow knight for you, mothy. Don't worry, it's not gay if we don't kiss.

mothy
July 16th, 2014, 20:11
Sorry, I don't enjoy it unless I feel beery breath.

ihatefall
July 16th, 2014, 20:15
Arguing in support of anyone who vaguely falls under the LGBTQAH spectrum regardless of how bonkers and hateful they are in their SJWing.

What's the H stand for?

mothy
July 16th, 2014, 20:18
Hermaphrodite

ihatefall
July 16th, 2014, 20:28
Can we add "TN" as well?
Triple nipple?

mothy
July 16th, 2014, 20:30
It would have to just be T, otherwise it might be mistakeen for Tennessee, and they aren't down with this shit.

Lolai Brin
July 16th, 2014, 21:19
Wan't trying to say anything about British people in general. Mainly wanted to make sure this wasn't simply a difference in language between cultures. Like American chips and British chips.

Now that we got that cleared up, yea she is crazy. She tells the students native speakers should be described as a person who's first language is ___ . According to the students, she said they should not use it because it is offensive to the said person to be described as "native anything". I guess somehow her imperialist attitude can't be associated with the lowly idea of being native.

Sigh.

Jiggit
July 16th, 2014, 21:21
What's the H stand for?

Homeless, apparently.

mothy
July 16th, 2014, 21:55
What do thy have against hermaphrodites? Such haters, those LGBTQHVs are.

SomePeopleJustSaySnow
July 16th, 2014, 22:18
Vehicles? Viruses? Vitalists?

tealparadise
July 17th, 2014, 08:21
Wan't trying to say anything about British people in general. Mainly wanted to make sure this wasn't simply a difference in language between cultures. Like American chips and British chips.

Now that we got that cleared up, yea she is crazy. She tells the students native speakers should be described as a person who's first language is ___ . According to the students, she said they should not use it because it is offensive to the said person to be described as "native anything". I guess somehow her imperialist attitude can't be associated with the lowly idea of being native.

Sigh.

I love when people, in their insane quest to be PC, actually reveal their own racism.

How is being "native" a bad thing? It's not. But apparently she thinks it is, hmmmm.

Aside: everyone that I know also uses the term "native level" which clears up the passport/birthright BS.

webstaa
July 17th, 2014, 08:28
In a similar vein - there was a brouhaha in on of my prefectural meetings because the Americans casually dropped the word 'handicapped' in connection to someone in a wheelchair and the two resident Irish JETs lost their fucking minds about how offensive 'handicapped' is and how there must be better words, because in one corner of one English speaking area it has the connotation of 'that dude's fucking stupid.'

So now we're 'indigenous speakers'?

greyjoy
July 17th, 2014, 08:35
I think "handicapped" has been phased out by "disabled", which sounds worse in my opinion, but whatever. I still call them retards.

Gizmotech
July 17th, 2014, 09:10
I'll weigh in for a second here..

Online, and in certain academic circles (most of em being British) there has been a recent push against the term native and non-native for English speakers. Mostly it comes from the idea that in developing countries there are English speakers who are fully capable at English, but their English is not seen as a native English, but a secondary colonial English (This mostly applies to India, South east Asia, and in some small parts European Englishes).

They have been saying the term is offensive/discriminatory by indicating that those Englishes are inferior. More importantly, it comes into play at the teaching level, where many institutions still discriminate against non-native English teachers because they are percieved as being less capable at English language instruction than a native speaker.

Is it genuinely offensive? Not really.

Is it being turned into an issue? Yes.

Jiggit
July 17th, 2014, 09:16
Online, and in certain academic circles (most of em being British) there has been a recent push against the term native and non-native for English speakers. Mostly it comes from the idea that in developing countries there are English speakers who are fully capable at English, but their English is not seen as a native English, but a secondary colonial English (This mostly applies to India, South east Asia, and in some small parts European Englishes).

Uhh, if you learned English as a first language then you're a native speaker. Otherwise Americans, Canadians and Australians wouldn't be native speakers of English either.


More importantly, it comes into play at the teaching level, where many institutions still discriminate against non-native English teachers because they are percieved as being less capable at English language instruction than a native speaker.

They are though. They sound fucking ridiculous and barely anyone can understand them. If you teach someone to speak like an American or Australian at least most people stand a pretty good chance of understanding them. If you teach them to speak like someone from Singapore then you've taught them a useless skill since they won't be able to communicate with anyone.

word
July 17th, 2014, 09:23
Can we add "TN" as well?
Triple nipple?Yay! I would finally be included in the group!


I love when people, in their insane quest to be PC, actually reveal their own racism.See: any white South African.

Gizmotech
July 17th, 2014, 09:28
Uhh, if you learned English as a first language then you're a native speaker. Otherwise Americans, Canadians and Australians wouldn't be native speakers of English either.

They are though. They sound fucking ridiculous and barely anyone can understand them. If you teach someone to speak like an American or Australian at least most people stand a pretty good chance of understanding them. If you teach them to speak like someone from Singapore then you've taught them a useless skill since they won't be able to communicate with anyone.

I know. I find the whole discussion a pointless tone argument because someone got their panties in a twist.

There is a small amount of merit in the employment side of the discussion though. For instance, some people (not many) here in japan could teach English anywhere. Their accent is good, they understand the methodology and systems of how to do it, and they are fully capable teachers. Will they get jobs outside of Japan, I highly doubt it, but being a NNS shouldn't be an automatic disqualification.

Ohh and Jiggit, I didn't learn English as a first language. It was my second. That's actually one of the big problems coming out of the US and Canada right now are billingual children who don't have perfect English skills, but have no problems communicating. English as a language is changing.

Jiggit
July 17th, 2014, 09:31
Sure, but the employment thing isn't about whether the term is offensive or not.

therealwindycity
July 17th, 2014, 10:29
What do thy have against hermaphrodites? Such haters, those LGBTQHVs are.

The correct term is Intersex, you monster!

ihatefall
July 17th, 2014, 11:00
The correct term is Intersex, you monster!

So for human animals we now use a different term than for the rest of the animals?!?
Those Intersex people/ hermaphrodites can go f#&@ themselves.....


(PS. Intersex has a dotted redline under it when you type it....just saying #NotAWord)

sharpinthefang
July 17th, 2014, 11:08
According to spell check, my name is not a word, yet it exists in several languages. The only time its a 'real' word is when i switch my spell check to Irish English and not British English.

Ini
July 17th, 2014, 11:16
According to spell check, my name is not a word, yet it exists in several languages. The only time its a 'real' word is when i switch my spell check to Irish English and not British English.

Rose of Sharon?

ihatefall
July 17th, 2014, 11:42
siobhan aoife ciara treasa ?

tealparadise
July 17th, 2014, 11:53
What makes a country's citizens auto-native speakers?

The India thing struck me because not everyone in India is a native English speaker, and it's true that many who are do not speak the commonly accepted form of English. And if you sent their writing in to a middle school English teacher anywhere else in the world, it would come back with a big fat F. The differences are far more substantial than UK vs US for instance, and extend to grammar and usage.

Does listing English as an official language make all of your citizens "native speakers" regardless of their level? What do we mean when we say "English?" Do we really mean "English" or do we mean "a method of communication that can be understood by most of the western world?"

But then on the other hand, when I went to Ireland with a friend, he literally couldn't understand anyone. I was "translating" fucking Irish accents and it was hilarious.

ihatefall
July 17th, 2014, 12:16
If it's different enough that other speakers of English have (a lot of) trouble understanding your "dialect" than maybe it should be a different language such as Hawaiian Pidgin - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hawaiian_Pidgin)

word
July 17th, 2014, 12:54
Technically, more English speakers speak with an Indian dialect than any other dialect. If we were gonna go by sheer numbers, their English would be the best English.

MG's first language isn't English (and she was born in the US), nor is the first language of at least four of her ALTing coworkers, but they all do pretty well in the classroom. I can't imagine any of them being offended by the term "native speaker." They may make the odd mistake now and again, but they're worlds ahead of any of their JTEs, and that's pretty much what really matters, isn't it? Hell, I spend half my time in my conversational classes pushing the kids to quit being so desperately scared of making a mistake that they'll avoid speaking at any cost. If any of 'em could eventually learn to speak half as well as an Indian, or a Singaporean, or an Irishman, or, f*ck, even an Australian, I'd be thrilled.

tealparadise
July 17th, 2014, 13:35
I misled with my original statement about India. I don't think that saying English wasn't someone's first language is a relevant way of qualifying it. If they are native-level it's moot.

India's "English" is more similar to Japan's English- Galapagos'd with loan-words and weirdness, and not actually spoken at a native level by many people. And even vaguely proficient people are difficult to understand. Do they get to claim native English speaker status simply by listing English as an official language of the country?

"According to the 2001 Census of India, almost all Indians who speak English are second language speakers.[3] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_English#cite_note-3)[4] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_English#cite_note-4)[5] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_English#cite_note-5)[6] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_English#cite_note-6)[7] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_English#cite_note-7) According to the 2005 India Human Development Survey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/India_Human_Development_Survey), the surveyed households reported that 72 per cent of men did not speak any English, 28 per cent spoke some English, and five per cent spoke fluent English. Among women, the corresponding percentages were 83, 17, and 3.[8] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_English#cite_note-8)"



I honestly don't know. Anyway, it's a stupid system- native vs non-native. They should just check people's actual English comprehension.