Date: Thu, 25 Aug 1994 08:55:11 CDT From: Mike Picone Subject: Re: What is a Racist Term? Racial labels/epithets are probably one of the best examples around of how essential pragmatic information is to the proper interpretation of any utterance. What is interesting to me is to compare racial terminologies in Cajun French to the English system, the latter having undergone shift due to public pressure which Cajun French was able to `hide' from. Thus most Cajuns refer to African-Americans as _les neg'_ (les negres), which can be pejorative or neutral depending on context. However, what is really surprising is that in many Cajun ballads, the term _mon neg'_ is a term of endearment referring to a white Cajun. No doubt this has its origin in the close ties between Cajun and Creole musical roots. Mike Picone University of Alabama