Explanation for 白人 - why is "caucasian" not politically correct?


#1

Ok, so I’m fully aware that I’m probably going to get a lot of heat for this. I am making this thread not because this offends me, but because I feel it’s out of place for a website like this.

I mean, since when is Caucasian even a non-politically-correct word? Why even go there? Regardless of how anyone feels about any political issues, this website should be the last place those topics are even hinted at.

Again, I am not trying to raise any political or social justice hellfire here, just think it’s out of place is all.


#2

There’s a good reason to make, or suggest that, something about the word or mnemonic is offensive, since that makes it more vivid. I don’t know that it’s doing that here, but I have no idea why the idea of mentioning it seems out of place to you. WK has plenty of offensive vocab and mnemonics.


#3

Sorry, I meant the implication that the word “Caucasian” is somehow politically incorrect or offensive seemed weird and out of place.


#4

I guess the meaning explanation is referring to the Japanese word 白人, not caucasian, not being particularly politically correct…


#5

Is it not a direct translation to “Caucasian”? If not then this whole thread is just a misunderstanding on my part.


#6

Literal translation would be white (白) person (人). Could be dodgy depending on context.


#7

Of course one of the translations is “Caucasian”… but the meaning description is about the Japanese word, not the English translations.

“It is a word that will help you learn these two kanji and their readings.”

What could be the “it” in that sentence? Caucasian won’t help with learning the readings and meanings of 白 and 人, but はくじん does.


#8

I get that. I misunderstood the first sentence to imply that the word “Caucasian” itself is politically incorrect, as opposed to はくじん being politically incorrect (which I, with very little Japanese knowledge, don’t know the connotations of). I suppose the entire topic being on the fore-front of most internet dramas these days has me a bit jumpy. My apologies if I got it wrong.


#9

It’s a bit odd anyway - “white person” isn’t very sketchy either. It’s not formal language, but you hear phrases like “white people” or “he’s white” from all but the staunchest of armchair activists.


#10

On an unrelated minor note, it might be a good idea to switch “Caucasian” with “White person” as the main meaning (I know that it is in the synonyms).

I understand that the USA is more relevant place than the rest of the world in the context of this website, but still - there are quite a lot of users not from the USA, and “white person” would sound well both for Americans and non-Americans.


#11

If both “white person” and “Caucasian” are politically incorrect, then what is the politically correct term? Minnesotans?


#12

Jesus Christ, some first world problems


#13

I updated the thread title because “weird meaning explanation” will not make much sense when someone is looking at the list of topic threads in six months’ time.


#14

Here’s an article about the term


#15

Huh, I didn’t actually know that. But then again, I have never met anyone who thought that “Caucasian” is in any way offensive.


#16

The Internet is teeming with this ridiculous kind of stuff. It’s like a virus.

Saying “Caucasian” isn’t politically incorrect - however, there is a lot of thought police that will tell you otherwise. Ignore, ignore, don’t be race baited, and don’t fall for the “skin color” fallacy either. This is my Caucasian opinion - others might (will) disagree and I care exactly nothing about it, because people who use skin color and/or lineage as arguments lack rationality. I was hoping wanikani would have been devoid of the disease known as “politically correct”… apparently it isn’t, and this is the one and only time I will respond to it. It’s a bad thing and we as a species need to move past it because it’s a toxic and divisional form of social interaction. Don’t fall for it.


#17

Yes, this is a first world problem. But since I live in the first world, I call it a problem.


#18

I don’t live in the first world and I don’t care much either way, just believe that WK, which has precisely nothing to do with anything even remotely socio-political, should stay away from it. It’s a very tiresome subject that is engulfing way too much of the internet in the past few years. It’d be nice to have bastions where it’s simply absent.


#19

As a millennium European white privileged boy, I’m not offended.

Next.


#20

When people get offended over people getting offended…

So meta.