Appendix:English terms for outsiders

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This is a list of words meaning outsider, foreigner or "not one of us", used in English language either natively or as a borrowing to refer to national specifics. Though often such words are not used with an intent of disrespect nor contempt, their nature of non-inclusion sometimes makes them offensive terms.

A number of words, such as newbie, epigone, dilettante that have a different meaning of persons with inferior expertise may also be used in the sense of an outsider with respect to a class of "experts".

Similarly, the terms such as plebs, may be used to denote outsiders with respect to "higher social classes".


  • ajami means "barbarian; non-Arab" in Arabic and acquired the meaning Persian, due to the Persians' lack of fluency in Arabic and because they were the main non-Arab people with whom the Arabs had contact.
  • ajaniib — Arabic for foreigner, said of stateless Kurds in Syria. [1]
  • aglasiew — Mi'kmaq term for Europeans.
  • alien — A general-purpose term; ranging from foreigners to extraterrestrials. [2]
  • ang Mo — A Chinese phrase in the Hokkien dialect meaning "red-haired", said of Caucasians, principally in Maylaysia and Singapore. [3]
  • babylon – The Rastafari movement believes that Babylon "is the historically white-European colonial and imperialist power structure which has oppressed Blacks and other peoples of color". [4]
  • barang – In Cambodia "these days the term barang applies to pretty much anybody white". [5] [6] Ultimately from European tribal name of Franks, via Arabic; [7] [8]; see also the entries for falang, farangi, etc., below.
  • barbarianBarbaros, a non-Greek in Ancient Greece. The accepted version of the term's origin is that it came "originally from the sound bar-bar which, according to the Greeks, was supposed to be the noise that people made when speaking foreign languages". [9]
  • bideshi – "[T]o denote foreigners in the dialect of Bengali that my family speaks we say bideshi"desh meaning country; thus Bangladesh is country of the Bengalis [10]. For a similar attestation to the meaning of this word, see [11].
  • biganeh — Persian, literally meaning unknown. One source states the word is also used to mean eccentric, when applied to "the revolutionary left and the secular right" in Iran [12]. In a widely read translation of a Persian book, That Stranger Within Me: A Foreign Woman Caught in the Iranian Revolution, the word is translated as stranger. [13]
  • boston – Used by indigenous people in the Pacific Northwest to describe any outsider (after the European settlement of the area)[14]
  • breeder – A common English word used in gay slang to describe heterosexuals, particularly those who have children, either jokingly or in a derogatory manner (Ling Liu of the Associated Press at [15]). The word is also used by childfree people [16] [17].
  • carpetbagger – Reconstruction-era [U.S. South. Primarily used for Northern (US) profiteers following the (US) Civil War.
  • CFA ("come-from-away") — Used in Newfoundlandto refer to a tourist. [18] [19]
  • cheechako — Somebody new to Alaska [20], from Chanook Jargon, a trade language spoken in earlier years in that territory. [21]
  • city slicker – A "city dweller with sophisticated manners and clothing" [22]. A "person from the big city who thinks country people are dumb" (in Anna on the Farm, by Mary Downing Hahn, page 31. [23])
  • civil slave - Somebody who belongs to the working class, used as a slang within the Hare Krishna movement.
  • country bumpkin — An awkward, heavy country fellow; a clown; a country lout. Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) states the origin of bumpkin is a French word, which an earlier dictionary (Cotgrave, 1610), defined as a certain block of wood used on a sailing vessel. "Hence, a clumsy man may easily have been compared to such a block of wood." Bumpkin is related to boom, a pole. [24] The poet Washington Irving wrote about bashful country bumpkins in The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. [25]


  • english — Amish people refer to the non-Amish as English: "Amish individuals are seldom completely comfortable around non-Amish people, or the 'English' or 'Outsider,' as non-Amish are known to the Amish" — Dr. Joe Wittmer at [26].
  • erdaldun – Basque language, a speaker of a foreign tongue (usually Spanish or French)
  • falang – Laos – Lao– Foreigner, usually from a European country.
  • farangi – Persia – Persian– a Persian word for foreigner, deriving from Frank, incorporated into Hindi and Thai languages.
  • farang – Thailand – Thai– (An English language magazine by the same name is published there specifically for the expatriate community).
  • firangi – India – - means not of the same color.
  • ferenji – Ethiopia – Foreigner, usually from a European country. Also ferenj.
  • ferenji – Arabic – Foreigner, usually from a European country.
  • flatlander – used by any mountain population to refer to lowlanders.
  • fresh off the boat (sometimes abbreviated as F.O.B. or FOB) is a slang phrase applied to recently arrived foreigners who have settled or are settling in an English-speaking country.
  • gadje, gorgio – Roma people – Romani. Related to the Sanskrit "gajjha", which means civilian [27].
  • gaijin – Japan – Japanese (although these days gaikokujin is becoming popular because of its "softer" meaning.)
  • gentile – Mormonism – Judaism – Latin.
  • giaour – non-Muslim (infidel)
  • goy – Judaism – Hebrew, also Yiddish. Plural Goyim. The word literally means "a group or nation of people". Jewish religious tradition refers to the entirety of worldwide Jewry as a nation (Israel). Members of other religious traditions are therefore members of other nations (goyim). The word is sometimes mistakenly regarded as pejorative by non-Jews. The Yiddish terms shegetz for a non-Jewish man, particularly a young man, and shiksa for a non-Jewish woman do, however, have a somewhat derogatory etymology.
  • gringo – Latin America, Anglosphere Hispanics – Spanish, Portuguese – a sometimes derogatory term for white-skinned speakers of non-Romance languages or U.S. citizens and other foreigners
  • grockle – South-west England
  • gweilo – Hong Kong – Cantonese
  • haole – Hawaii – Foreigner, also adopted colloquially with the same definition by other indigenous island cultures as far away as Palau
  • hick – Cities


  • idegen ee-dae-gae-n - Hungarian - foreigner. neutral.
  • illegal alien - USA - a foreigner living in the United States without a U.S. visa
  • infidel – Christianity – Latin
  • inostranets – Russian for those outside the society, local or national.
  • jackeen – Ireland – derogatory term used by Non-Dubliners to describe Dubliners
  • jarawa– Andaman & Nicobar islands, India; reference to a 'primitive' tribe least receptive to 'modernity'; the word means simply 'the others' in the language of the neighbouring Onge tribe
  • kafir – Islam – Arabic; infidel or non-believer in Islam.
  • kaffir used as blanket derogatory term for Black people in South Africa during the Apartheid era.
  • karmi - meaning 'one who wants to enjoy the results of their activity', used as a slang within the Hare Krishna movement.
  • khawagah - Derogatory Egyptian Arabic equivalent for Ajaniib, above.
  • laowai – China
  • life person - term for one who is not a member of the Fellowship of Friends cult.
  • longhair – Beatnik term for classical music fans not hip to jazz.


  • mayavadi - a person who promotes the philosophy that God is incable of having a form, or is ultimately formless. From the Hare Krishna movement.
  • mundane - used by members of science fiction fandom for those who aren't involved. It is not derogatory. Also used by people involved in magic and similar esoteric subjects to refer to people or things not involved. Also, not derogatory.
  • mun - short for "mundane", occasionally used by people with ADHD or Asperger syndrome with the intent of discrediting those who call ADHD and Asperger syndrome neurological 'disorders' similar to calling them "fuddy-duddies"
  • mzungu - means 'white man' in Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi
  • neurotypical - sometimes abbreviated "NT" - used by people with autism or Asperger syndrome syndrome to denote individuals not on the autism spectrum. Descriptive and not derogatory, used in both ordinary and academic discussions.
  • norm - sometimes used by hipsters of various generations to refer to people in the mainstream, as in in the phrase "freaking the norms".
  • n.O.S. - a term from Edwardian England used in the snobbish sense of 'not our sort' as in 'N.O.S., dear'
  • osantasu - Powhatan (extinct language) term for Europeans
  • outlander (auslander) - German speaking countries - a foreigner
  • palagi (or palangi) - Samoa - Non-samoans, usually used for white people
  • pākehā – New Zealand – New Zealand English, adapted from Māori
  • paleface – used by Native Americans, usually in Hollywood movies
  • pardesi – India
  • paynim – Crusader term for non-Christians


  • strapper - Gloucestershire - outsider, especially outsider coming from a town to the country life of which ignorant and causes trouble pretending to have local concerns
  • ricain — France — Basically means yankee. From American.[28]
  • spailpin (pr. 'spalpeen') - Ireland - original meaning was 'migrant worker', now used as a general insult
  • sasanach - Ireland - original meaning was 'English person'
  • square – Beatnik term for those not hip to jazz.
  • taig/teague - Northern Ireland Protestant - a catholic (derogatory) (from Gaelic given name tadg, of similar pronunciation)
  • textile – nudism


  • uitlander - Afrikaans equivalent of 'Outlander' or German "auslander" - a foreigner
  • utböling – Swedish language
  • vanilla – BDSM
  • videshi – India
  • vlach – Eastern Europe – Slavic languages
  • waiguoren – China, Taiwan
  • weigukin in Korea
  • wetback – Used to describe undocumented Mexicans in the U.S., as if they had swum across the Rio Grande
  • —Welsh – English – Old English
  • wog – British Empire. Reported to be an acronym for "Worthy Oriental Gentleman" (used ironically). Also used by the Church of Scientology to refer to non-Scientologists [29] [30]
  • wop With out Papers. – First used to describe Italians but mainly Mexicans now.
  • Worldly – Used by Jehovah's Witnesses to refer to non-Witnesses
  • yankee — When spoken by Southerners in the United States, it refers to a person from north of the Mason-Dixon Line. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language says that in this context the word "carries less emotion" than it formerly did. [31] People living in New England call themselves Yankees, It is also the name of a New York baseball team.
  • zuagroasta — " . . . a foreigner having adapted just fairly to Bavarian culture. . . . whether or not the title of a 'Zuagroasta' is meant detrimentally or in a positive sense, depends on the tone of voice in which it is expressed! Spoken detrimentally signals other aborigines, that the person addressed that way has demonstrated a beginner's level, but is not yet ready for further acceptance. The next rank is the status of a person welcome to Bavaria and eligible for naturalisation to a Bavarian citizen, which means ample integration on a revocable basis." The origin of this word is from zugereister, below. (Source: Rudi Osler at [32].)
  • zugereister – Germany, Austria – German
  • zugezogener – Germany, Austria – German

Lists by originator[edit]

List by nation, ethnicity or religion[edit]


  • alien – a general-purpose term; ranging from foreigners to extraterrestrials
  • Rastafari movement: babylon
  • Cities: hick
  • Countryside: city slicker
  • Island Communities: mainlander is often used on the East Coast by residents of Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, Deer Island, New Brunswick, Campobello Island, New Brunswick, Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick or Cape Breton Island. On the West Coast the term is used by people who live on Vancouver Island
  • Military, police, or other uniformed services: civilian
  • Mountain populations: flatlander
  • Reconstruction-era U.S. South: carpetbagger