Ragtime and coded slurs in the Chicago Tribune

Barbara Need bhneed at GMAIL.COM
Mon Jun 30 15:08:37 UTC 2008

Wilmette, IL (a Chicago suburb) has decided not to stage _Ragtime_ in
one of the town's parks, having just discovered the plethora of
offensive words in the script (most notably the N-word)--they were
concerned that people in the park who were not attending the play
would be offended. The production has been under way since January.
jun28,0,795774.story and http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/

And there was an article on today's front page about "coded slurs".
i..e., ways of being offensive without (!?) being obvious. The
article referenced _reggin" (read it backwards), the reference by Fox
to Michelle Obama as Barack's "baby mama" (discussed here) and a
situation in which an Indian was attacked by a co-worker with
learning disabilities because the latter believed the former was
Osama bin Laden's brother! (http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/


Barbara Need

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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