Terms No Longer in Common Use
The terms mulatto and colored were widely used until the second quarter of the 20th century, when they were considered outmoded and generally gave way to the use of negro. By the 1940s, the term commonly was capitalized, Negro, but by the mid-1960s it was considered disparaging. By the end of the twentieth century "Negro" had come to be considered inappropriate and was rarely used and perceived as a pejorative. The term is rarely used by younger black people, but remained in use by many older black Americans who had grown up with the term, particularly in the southern U.S.
The word negro is the Spanish and Portuguese word for the color black. In regions such as Latin America where these languages are spoken, negro (pronounced slightly differently than Negro in English), is a normal word used without disparaging intent in relation to black people.
There are many other deliberately insulting terms. Many were in common use, but had become unacceptable in normal discourse before the end of the twentieth century.
Famous quotes containing the words common, terms and/or longer:
“It is the characteristic of great poems that they will yield of their sense in due proportion to the hasty and the deliberate reader. To the practical they will be common sense, and to the wise wisdom; as either the traveler may wet his lips, or an army may fill its water-casks at a full stream.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)
“What had really caused the womens movement was the additional years of human life. At the turn of the century womens life expectancy was forty-six; now it was nearly eighty. Our groping sense that we couldnt live all those years in terms of motherhood alone was the problem that had no name. Realizing that it was not some freakish personal fault but our common problem as women had enabled us to take the first steps to change our lives.”
—Betty Friedan (20th century)
“When other helpers fail and comforts flee, when the senses decay and the mind moves in a narrower and narrower circle, when the grasshopper is a burden and the postman brings no letters, and even the Royal Family is no longer quite what it was, an obituary column stands fast.”
—Sylvia Townsend Warner (18931978)