SIGIA-L Mail Archives: RE: SIGIA-L: International IA Theories ?
RE: SIGIA-L: International IA Theories ?
From: VanTol, Robert (Robert.VanTol_at_plc.cwplc.com)
Date: Thu Mar 29 2001 - 06:00:26 EST
>Slightly off-topic (or maybe not??) I'm curious to
>know the cultural identity of the person(s) who told
>you that the term "Anglo" has "the whiff of white
>supremacist racists" in the U.S.
It was an African-American CFO of a large Golf Course Management
Corporation, as reported by my Anglo-South African CEO. Of course, what with
one thing and another, people with a pronounced Sid Afrikann accents are
probably at a bit of disadvantage when discussing the etymology of racism
with anyone. Mind you, it can work both ways - I was with a American guy who
wanted to refer to Black people living in Britain, and came up with
British-African-Americans - so keen was he to avoid using the B word.
(Afro-Caribbean is the usual term, though with significant populations
having come directly from Africa, it's euphemistic utility is doubtful.)
>Maybe it just goes to show that, though it's worth it to do everything
>you can to speak the language of your target audience,
>you can never assume the possibility of a 100%
Absolutely. And when the audience is world-wide, it is impossible, even if
you stick to "English" (in all it nuances to English, Scots, Welsh, Irish,
Americans, Canadians, South Africans, Australians, New Zealanders - just to
name the English speakers deeply infused (or overwhelmed) in the "English"
language). And if you want to just how difficult that is, go to an
international English-speaking cookery site: the foods, the measuring
systems, the heat measurements, the names of cooking methods, even the names
of cooking implements are ALL different. You saying Toe-MAY-Toe and me
saying Tom-MAR-Toe is the very least of the difficulties.
>And, swerving back on topic, why shouldn't this apply
>to IA as well as to language? ;-)
Indeed, and swerving even more wildly and crashing semi-out of control into
the neighbouring thread on Standards: whose Standards? Implicit in the whole
Standards thing is that you can have a one-size-fits-all construct. But it's
important to remember that America (and I fully realise that a hundred years
ago the pumped chests of hubris would have been English) and The World are
not synonyms - and nor is the English Language and Global Communications. So
please, locate them in their cultural context: they are an attempt at
creating American IA Standards.
rob van tol
List archives are available at:
To subscribe or unsubscribe, send mail to majordomo_at_asis.org with the
appropriate command from the list below in the body of the message:
This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2
: Sun Nov 23 2003 - 22:54:35 EST