- Feb 13, 2011
- In your bedroom wardrobe...
But "Oriental"? That colonialist, racist term will make me want to take a stick and beat whoever calls me that on the head with it. The British Empire is no more, yo! It's not the Victorian period anymore!
It’s dreadful to my ears. My sisters fiancé used to insist on it! I always asked him why he wanted to use such an antiquated term with such unsavoury connections and he never gave me an answer I understood. But that’s the point here; these terms and where we place ourselves are deeply nuanced despite our own misgivings.
I even have black friends who prefer the term ‘coloured’ (!!!) and these days we have the term ‘brown’ for non Afro-Caribbean people.
However identity and culture are two different things and you can’t tell someone what to call themselves.
I personally loathe the word ‘queer’ and despise its use. I think it’s pejorative and othering and over-general, but plenty of gay people are happy with it.
Such is the minefield the author navigates when writing.