[extropy-chat] Redneck Transhumanists

Olga Bourlin fauxever at sprynet.com
Sat Jul 3 20:44:55 UTC 2004

From: "Samantha Atkins" <samantha at objectent.com>
>> On Jul 3, 2004, at 8:27 AM, Olga Bourlin wrote:
> I can see where a lot of stuff is wrapped up in redneck that is
> problematic and how it can be and is used to mark the "other" rigidly.
>   But it isn't the way I use it usually except when joking around.

Regarding the problematic aspect - it may not be the way *you* use it, but
it is the way a lot people use it.  Perception is everything, and perception
is really what counts.  And the perception of "redneck" is not

> > One of the meanings of "transhumanism" is that it's a "philosophy ...
favoring the use of  certain technologies to improve the human condition
beyond the constraints of biological evolution."  IMHO we can do a lot to
improve the human condition now by resisting making fun of a certain class
and "race" of people.

> I agree with the sentiment although again I don't believe "redneck"
refers to class or race.

As for "race":  Whenever I've heard it being used, "redneck" referred to (a
certain class of) "white people."  From the very inception of the word,
"redneck" referred to whites.  I realize words and phrases change meanings
and sometimes evolve to mean different things in time, but one just can't
get away from the *visual* image of a "red neck," hmmmm?:

"The "Encyclopedia of Word and Phrase Origins" by Robert Hendrickson (Facts
on File, New York, 1997) has this to say about the term: "REDNECK. A poor,
white, often rowdy southerner, usually one from a rural area. The word,
which is sometimes derogatory, has its origins in the sunburned necks of
farmers and outdoor laborers, and originally meant a poor farmer."

As for class:  Again, the *perception* of the word "redneck" does have a
definite classist component.  It doesn't matter whether you personally don't
believe redneck refers to a class - it does.


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