Non-negative 1974 connotation of the word retarded

Victor Steinbok aardvark66 at GMAIL.COM
Mon Mar 5 15:14:00 UTC 2012

Of course, now "LD" has almost nothing to do with what used to be
"retarded". With "autistic" and "autism spectrum disorder" the goalposts
have been moved rather drastically, so you now have the same tags being
stigma to some and a badge of pride to others.


On 3/5/2012 9:55 AM, Charles C Doyle wrote:
> I seem to recall a time when "retarded" was the polite term, having replaced "idiot," " moron," etc.  Then in the 1970s "retarded" gave way to "L.D." and other designations--all of them quickly stigmatized, until now we're left with the highly nonspecific "special."
> Charlie

The American Dialect Society -

More information about the Ads-l mailing list