In the wild: boujie

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Tue Jan 25 05:53:50 UTC 2011

On Mon, Jan 24, 2011 at 10:34 PM, Victor Steinbok <aardvark66 at> wrote:
>> A Southern African-American contraction of the word "bourgeoisie",
>> used to describe someone rich or in the upper class. Similar meaning
>> to "sidity".

Really, really, really old news, Victor. In BE, this has been in use
since possibly the '40's. Lately, I've noticed that the pronunciation
appears to be shifting from the [budZI] of my youth to [buZi]. I noted
this in an earlier post because, among BE speakers from at least my
grandparents' time, ca.1875-, to "here of late," there was no [Z] in
BE: garage, rouge, barrage, leisure, etc. all once had [dZ] and not

WRT Asians, have you seen the commercial for some big-name brand of
bastitbaw shoes - Nike? Adidas? - featuring a hip-hop-speaking Asian
baller who, in one version, refers to himself as the "Beast From The
Far East," with his black sidekick, the "Beast From The Regular East"?
I wonder why it is that two real black guys aren't used, instead of a
pswaydo-black Asian guy and a black guy.

It's merely the American way, I reckon. Or maybe it's karma making up
for the '50's R&B sides, "Ling-Ting_tong," My Chinese Girl," "The
Japanese Sandman," and such. At the time, I figured that such songs
mere made up for Charlie Chan's colored boy, the inimitable


When a BE obscenity like "tapping  ass," in no way distinct from
"getting pussy" or even "fucking" among native-speakers of BE, can be
used by characters on the mainstream, "white" TV show, "Bones," as
though it was as trivial as "dating" - well, clearly, it *is* as
trivial as "dating" among white speakers or it couldn't have gotten
past the censors - that an Asian-American should use "boojie" on TV
isn't particularly startling and is only just barely interesting.

That only the use of "nigger" and "bitch" should be the only words
that gather any ink when people whine about rap and hip-hop as though
they somehow were a sign of the Apocalypse is interesting

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"––a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
–Mark Twain

The American Dialect Society -

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