Date: Sun, 20 Nov 1994 10:36:05 -0800 From: Audrey Wright Subject: Re: afterthought on braids I wonder if the reference could also be "culturally" determined, or even "politically" determined. For instance, my mother was a cosmetologists. In her usage, 'braids' and 'pigtails' would never overlap in meaning. Pigtails stick out from a single point, and do not have the connotation of even attempting to be 'hair sculpture' while braids (which can include hairwrapping) usually with the intent of providing a creative style, i.e. hairsculpturing. Politically speaking perhaps, I know enough women, who feel that what happened to Bo Derek and her 'braids' was such an insult to African/African American women that they would never, never refer to her style and 'braids'. Personally, I have been wearing 'braids' for more than 20 years. I know of no one who would call them pigtails. Audrey ?1;0c On Sun, 20 Nov 1994, M. Lynne Murphy wrote: > when people say "braids" they usually mean braided pigtails (a la > pippi longstocking?) because that's the prototypical way (in u.s. > culture, at least) of wearing braids (plural). but i could say "bo > derek had her hair in braids" or "...wore braids" meaning cornrows as > well, if the context allowed it. i do think, though that "braids" > have to hang. so, if you had someone with a cornrowed style that > stayed close to the scalp, i'd say that their hair is "braided" not > that it's in "braids". (however, "braided" can be used for hanging > braids as well.) > > i would not be at all surprised to learn that in addition to (or > instead of) regional differences, one would find gender differences > in the interpretation of these words. i know i've had arguments w/ > men from the same region about their use of hairstyle names that i > didn't believe were accurate descriptions. (things like: him: if > you're hot, put your hair in pigtails. me: pigtails are for kids. > him: you always wear a pigtail. me: that's a ponytail, there's a > difference.) > > lynne > > ____________________________________________________________________ > 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 >