nigger

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See also: Nigger

English

English Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia

Alternative forms

Etymology

Probably immediately from French nègre or Spanish and Portuguese negro (a black African); ultimately from Latin niger (black). Compare Danish nigger, Swedish nigger, German Nigger, Dutch nikker. Doublet of negro and noir.

Pronunciation

Noun

nigger (plural niggers, feminine niggeress)

  1. (offensive, ethnic slur, vulgar, see usage notes) A black person; a person of black African descent.
    1. (offensive, ethnic slur, vulgar slang) A person of black African descent who acts in an unapproved manner (whether positive or negative).
      • 1996, Chris Rock: Bring the Pain[4]:
        (Chris Rock): There's black people, and there's niggers. And niggers have got to go. Every time black people wanna have a good time, ign'ant-ass niggers fuck it up.
      • 2008, Greydon Square (music), “The N Word”, in The CPT Theorem:
        See, niggers are followers, blacks normally lead. / Niggers call blacks "whitewash" soon as they on the scene.
      • 2010 April 13, Kitty Kelley, quoting an unnamed town resident, Oprah: A Biography, New York, N.Y.: Crown, →ISBN, OL 24087304M, page 193:
        Blacks stayed at home during the civil rights march. Niggers are the ones that marched.
  2. (offensive, ethnic slur, vulgar, see usage notes) A member of another typically dark-skinned people (now especially in combinations, e.g. prairie nigger, sand nigger).
  3. (African-American Vernacular) An informal term of address.
    • 2002 January 13, Earl Ofari Hutchinson, “"Loaded Language", a review of Nigger: The Strange Career of a Troublesome Word by Randall Kennedy”, in Washington Post, page BW06:
      I had overheard him greet a buddy who called him on the phone with "Yo, nigger, what's up?"
  4. (African-American Vernacular) A friend.
    • 1997, McKinley Lee, Chosen by Fate: My Life inside Death Row Records, →ISBN:
      “Snoop Dog!” one of them yelled. “That’s my nigga from Long Beach, man.”
    • 2001 Autumn-Winter, Awad Ibrahim, quoting ‘Sam’, “Hey, whadap homeboy?”, in Taboo[5], page 94:
      I wonna say whassup to all my Niggers, you know, peace and one love.
  5. (now offensive) A fish, the luderick (Girella tricuspidata).
  6. (now offensive, dated) A dark brown butterfly, Orsotriaena medus.
    • 1932, Gustavus Athol Waterhouse, What Butterfly is That?: A Guide to the Butterflies of Australia, page 112:
      Nigger (Male) Orsotriaena medus moira Waterhouse and Lyell. 1914.
    • 2010, Khew Sin Khoon, A Field Guide to the Butterflies of Singapore, page 69:
      The Nigger is a common butterfly in Singapore and can be found in the company of bush browns.
  7. (archaic, electrical) An impurity in the covering of an electrical conductor which serves to make a partial short circuit, and thus becomes sufficiently heated to burn and destroy the insulation.
    • 1892, Western Electrician, volume 11, page 72:
      Now to locate the portion of the machine which contains the "nigger."
  8. (Britain, Cornwall, fishing, archaic) A kind of sea cucumber, Holothuria forskali, the cotton spinner.
  9. (archaic) The larva of the turnip sawfly, an agricultural pest.
    • 1873, Nature, volume 7, page 448:
      To this group belongs the nigger, or black caterpillar of the turnip, which is often in sufficient numbers to do much mischief.
  10. (archaic) A strong iron-bound timber with sharp teeth or spikes protruding from its front face, forming part of the machinery of a sawmill, and used in canting logs, etc.
    • 1918, Leonard L. Shertzer, How to Build and Operate a Sawmill (page 20)
      A sawyer will come along and be touted and recommended as the best in the country when his chief qualifications will be his ability to jerk the carriage back and forth in a hurry without striking the bumper or to turn the log with the nigger []
  11. (archaic, US) A steam-capstan on some Mississippi river boats, used to haul the boat over bars and snags by a rope fastened to a tree on the bank.
    • 1983, Goldenseal, volume 9, page 20:
      Well, it's a big heavy line, and you operate the nigger — capstan it's also called — by steam. You wrap your line around that and keep taking in the slack, and that draws up them things.
  12. (film, dated) A black screen used in conjunction with the camera to block light or produce special lighting effects.
    • 1961, Peter Snow, Electronic Flashlight Photography (page 114)
      Care should be taken to check visually from the position occupied by the subject and from the camera also, to ascertain that the nigger is positioned correctly and does not obstruct the picture area.

Usage notes

  • The word "nigger" is considered one of the most offensive words in the English language. In a 2007 study by Kristy Beers Fägersten, undergraduates at the University of Florida were asked to rate 12 pejorative English words on a scale of 1 ('Not Offensive') to 10 ('Very Offensive'). Participants rated nigger the most offensive, nearly 2 points higher than the second-most offensive word, cunt.[1] New Zealand's Broadcasting Standards Authority conducted a study in 2010 and again in 2013 which found that nigger was the second-most offensive word in New Zealand (after cunt), offending 66% and 65% of those surveyed respectively,[2][3] and a similar study by several British broadcasting organizations found that "nigger" offended 68% of Brits and was the fifth most offensive word in the UK (after cunt, motherfucker, fuck, and wanker).[4]
  • There have been efforts by those of African descent to reclaim the word (especially in the form nigga), but these efforts are controversial and some people do not believe it is able to be reclaimed due to its fraught history and continued derogatory usage.[5] Regardless, usage by non-blacks is still almost invariably considered highly offensive.
  • "Nigger" has derogatory connotations, suggesting not only negatively-perceived darkness of skin but also unfavorable attributes such as a lack of intelligence, chronic unemployment, use of government welfare, a propensity toward drug use and criminal behavior, etc.[6] It is furthermore associated with the era of white colonization of Africa and enslavement of Africans and African Americans.
  • To blunt its force, the word is commonly referred to as the "n-word" and is typically censored in direct quotations.

Synonyms

Derived terms

Related terms

Translations

Verb

nigger (third-person singular simple present niggers, present participle niggering, simple past and past participle niggered)

  1. (transitive, dated) To clear land by laying light pieces of round timber across the trunks of the trees and setting fire to them at the point of contact, by which means the trees are slowly burned through.
    • 1844, J. W. Dunbar Moodie, “The Ould Dhragoon; or, a visit to the beaver meadow”, in Literary garland, volume 2, Lovell & Gibson, page 360:
      [] he resorted to the practice of “niggering,” as it is called: which is simply laying light pieces of round timber across the trunks of the trees and setting fire to them at the point of contact; by which means the trees are slowly burned through.
    • 1914, Indiana State Teachers Association, Readings in Indiana history, Indiana University, History Section, page 171:
      The operation was this: they placed smaller logs and dry rubbish across the log and applied fire to them; this was called “niggering”.
    • 1956, Joseph Kirkland, Zury: the meanest man in Spring County: a novel of western life, University of Illinois Press, page 40:
      All day long his axe rang through the frosty air as he felled saplings for the fence and stripped them from fuel for the “niggering” fires.
    • 1980, Elaine Hedges, William Hedges, Land and imagination: the rural dream in America, Hayden Book Co., page 69:
      This means subduing and taming the forest itself—the central drama of The Fields—performing the hard labor of hacking the trees and “niggering” and burning the butts in order to get to the rich black soil underneath.
  2. (transitive, dated) To exhaust (soil) by cropping it year by year without manure.
  3. (intransitive, offensive) To behave as a stereotypical black person.
    • 1989, Reynolds Price, The surface of earth, Ballantine Books, page 120:
      His father said, “Niggering, I was niggering about. You knew that surely.”
    • 2007, George Hovis, Vale of Humility: Plain Folk in Contemporary North Carolina Fiction, Univ of South Carolina Press, page 86:
      Forrest’s rediscovery of his father coincides with his discovery that old Robinson’s “niggering around” produced at least one child of mixed race.
    • 2008, Joe Ambrose, Gimme Danger: The Story Of Iggy Pop, Music Sales Group:
      I mean he was niggering. Niggering out, grabbing at my leg and microphone cord. I said, ‘Stop that you damn nigger!’ and that takes guts!
  4. (uncommon, transitive, offensive) To treat as inferior.
    • 1997 January 18, Joe Frisch, “Anglo-US relations under a Blair Government”, in uk.org.mensa, Usenet[6]:
      The gated community is a powerful tool in the systematic and sustained niggering of local 3rd-world communities - namely, in the book, the Hispanic (mostly wetbacK[sic]) community
    • 1999 December 3, Jeff Welch, “Who is McGuyver and why was he "niggered?”, in seattle.general, December 3, Usenet[7]:
      > He is on TV saying that he was "abused" by the police and treated like a nigger.
    • 2003 July 16, “Mob Attacks Palestinian Pollsters Who Told The Truth”, in soc.retirement, Usenet:
      Why would many Paletinians want to return to a land where they would be "niggered" for the benefit of the Israelis as the present Palestinian population is

References

  1. ^ Kristy Beers Fägersten (2007) , “A sociolinguistic analysis of swear word offensiveness”, in Saarland Working Papers in Linguistics (SWPL)[1], Högskolan Dalarna (Dalarna University), Sweden, pages 14-37
  2. ^ What Not to Swear: The Acceptability of Words in Broadcasting
  3. ^ What Not to Swear: The Acceptability of Words in Broadcasting, 2013
  4. ^ "Delete expletives?"
  5. ^ Rachel Higson (September 28, 2017) , “Considering the N-Word: To Reject or Reclaim?”, in The Prindle Post[2], DePauw, Indiana: The Janet Prindle Institute for Ethics at DePauw University
  6. ^ Wikipedia-logo-v2.svg Stereotypes of African Americans on Wikipedia.Wikipedia

Anagrams


Danish

Danish Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia da

Etymology

Borrowed from English nigger.

Pronunciation

Noun

nigger c (singular definite niggeren, plural indefinite niggere)

  1. (vulgar, derogatory, offensive, rare) nigger; a dark-skinned person, especially a person of, or primarily of, Negro descent

Synonyms


Norwegian Bokmål

Norwegian Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia no

Etymology

From English nigger.

Noun

nigger m (definite singular niggeren, indefinite plural niggere, definite plural niggerne)

  1. (vulgar, offensive) nigger

Synonyms

References


Norwegian Nynorsk

Etymology

From English nigger.

Noun

nigger m (definite singular niggeren, indefinite plural niggerar, definite plural niggerane)

  1. (vulgar, offensive) nigger

Synonyms

References


Swedish

Swedish Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia sv

Etymology

Attested since 1888 according to Svenska Akademiens ordbok. From English nigger.

Pronunciation

Noun

nigger c

  1. (vulgar, offensive, dated) nigger, a variant of neger

Declension

Declension of nigger 
Singular Plural
Indefinite Definite Indefinite Definite
Nominative nigger niggern niggrer niggrerna
Genitive niggers niggerns niggrers niggrernas

Synonyms

Anagrams