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May 4, 2012

Comments

omar

see also: http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/gnxp/2011/01/stop-using-the-word-caucasian-to-mean-white/

Its a completely ridiculous term, but one reason it sticks around is that people of European origin (like yourself) dont want to use the word "White" in scientific circles because its tainted with racism, but they sometimes need to specify racial origin and so they think its better to say "caucasian". What would really be better is to use the term "European" (and the interntional hapmap project does exactly that when it labels its European origin samples "EUR").
Quite apart from any social usage, this specification of race (or population) is sometimes needed for "purely" scientific reasons e.g. in a medical paper, where the objective is just to identify what population the subject is from (different populations having different disease risks and so on) ...population in this case means what race used to mean...population being a less loaded and probably preferable term..on that topic, see http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/gnxp/2012/02/the-social-and-biological-construction-of-race/

Picador

'What would really be better is to use the term "European"'

Yes, I can imagine how THAT would go down among the white supremacists of North America. "Europeans" are a bunch of cheese-eating socialists. Proper white people originally sprang out of the earth in Branson, Missouri in 1905 and have since migrated across the entire range of their habitat, namely "real America" (the continental US, minus New England, Washington DC, and California). It's high time the nation's textbooks started reflecting the real history of this majestic and proud people; I'm sure the Kansas Board of Education is working diligently to correct this oversight.

meika

USAmericans are still addicted to using terms which are derived from a slave society. Look at any wikipedia entry for any county or town in the US and one of the useless facts presented is some census figures on the racial make-up of the county or town. It's not racial information is code for who used-to-own-slaves, who was-a-slave, and other. "Caucasian" is a part of that base stupidity.

Why is it on wikipedia? Why does the US census collect that shit information?

In the USA it's never about race, it's about slavery. Racism is a form of nostalgic slavery, not the other way around.

In Australia it's not about race, it's about land, about squatting, racism here is a form of nostalgic settler capitalism. The slave labour, the convicts, were always only temporary.

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