Date: Wed, 2 Nov 1994 02:00:00 LCL


Subject: Re: who is african american

I know that biologically speaking, there is no such thing as "race."

Is there a another use of the term "race" other than in bigotry (and

government)? This is a serious question -- no humor this time.

some physical anthropologists are interested in figuring out about

"races"--but i believe their use of the term is somewhat different

from the popular use, and their interests are often highjacked for

political reasons. but, the relevant thing is that the

caucasoid/mongoloid/negroid classification was only ever one of a

number of conflicting theories, but it got popularized in a way that

other theories (including that there's only one race) never did. the

interest in physical anthropology is to trace the origins of the


did anyone else see the program "ape man" on arts and entertainment

network? (a friend sent me the one re: language.) it discussed the

possibility that physical differences from the rest of humanity in

europeans (protrusion of the nose, in particular) are partly

accounted for by the hypothesis that homo-whatever (can't remember

my ancestors' names) interbred with the neanderthals in europe

(neanderthals have only been found in europe). this would, in part,

account for the disappearance of neanderthals. and, of course,

argues against nazi notions that the "aryans" are "pure". also gives

me a whole new take on calling someone a neanderthal.



M. Lynne Murphy e-mail: 104lyn[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]

Lecturer, Dept. of Linguistics phone: 27(11)716-2340

University of the Witwatersrand fax: 27(11)716-8030

Johannesburg 2050 South Africa

"Language without meaning is meaningless." --Roman Jakobson