house nigger

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By analogy with slaves that worked predominantly indoors during US slavery who were trained with more skills than basic field hands or plantation niggers.


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house nigger (plural house niggers)

  1. (dated, now offensive) A black slave that worked as a domestic as opposed to manual laborer.
    • 2008, Julia L. Mickenberg, Philip Nel, Tales for little rebels: a collection of radical children's literature, page 195
      If massa was sick, house nigger would come 'round and say, “Massa we sick, ain't we?
  2. (derogatory, ethnic slur, idiomatic) A subservient or accultured black person; an Uncle Tom or traitor
    • 2003, John Cheever, The Wapshot Chronicle[1], page 162:
      "You look like a house nigger."