Date: Wed, 28 Jan 1998 21:41:36 -0500 From: Gerald Cohen Subject: Re: "dis" The discussion of the verb"dis" should include mention that it arose in the speech of African-Americans. Evidently the word is emotionally charged for many young African-Americans; "disrespecting" or, for short, "dissing" someone can be regarded with great seriousness and provoke a violent response. The example given by Clarence Major's _Juba to Jive_ (under "dissing") is: "Man, they were dissing us, so we jumped them." On a general note, the contribution of African-Americans to American speech has been considerable. A comprehensive treatment of this topic is still waiting to be written. --Gerald Cohen gcohen[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]