Language defines those that use it.
Language is a major component of identity and a cultural determinant.
Our individual use of language is a combination of the legacy we inherit from our ancestors and the communities that we inhabit today.
Our group use of language marks our groups and territories in a war-like manner, saying 'this is who we are (as we see us), this is who you are (as we see you)'.
may break my
bones but names will
never hurt me – a childhood lie
that does not die because language
small words and large systems that
grow into huge
pervasive organisms of destruction
and discrimination. The
pyramid of falsehood will continue to grow and
the foundation will
widen under the pressure of the lie
that is not challenged or made to die.
Marjorie Morgan Ó June 07
Racism surfaced during the slave trade: the idea of white superiority and inequality was encouraged by slavery. Negative stereotypes and offensive language were used to support the idea of African inferiority in the world.
This legacy still exists today.