On 8/31/06, Paul Robinson <paul / iconoplex.co.uk> wrote:
> On 31 Aug 2006, at 14:25, Michal Suchanek wrote:

> > For one, I heared that Eskimos use some tens of various words for
> > different kinds of snow and ice. You get the idea.
>
> They're called inuits, not eskimos - calling somebody an eskimo is
> like calling them a nigger, i.e. highly offensive - but I'm aware of
> what you mean by the snow/ice thing.

I hereby apologize to any Inuits frequenting this list. To my defence
I'd like to say that the word Eskimo was adopted into Czech probably
more than half a century ago, and sice there are no Inuits around the
nationality designation could not collect any negative racist or
pejorative connotations.

However we also have to develop new designations for nationalities
that are around because the designations that are used too long become
somewhat rasistic or pejorative, just like in English speaking
countries.

>
> However, this is just social slang, all cultures have it, and there
> is more slang for those things that culture is obsessed by. Think how
> many different terms there are in western culture for genitals and
> having sex and getting drunk (yes, I know this is a sad statement on
> western culture) - it's exactly the same thing. A big enough
> dictionary takes care of it.

Slang or not it creates many words with different meanings, at least
in the snow case these should be different kinds of snow I beleive.

However the drunk case is interesting as well. As far as I am aware in
Czech there are two words widely used that mean 'get drunk by wine',
'and get drunk by beer', and the rest of the slang is just a synonym
for 'get drunk'. Though some are probably used for 'get drunk much'
and others for 'get drunk slightly'. I do not have detailed knowledge
of English in this regard.

This reflects that wine and beer are two historically most widely used
drugs in Europe so one needs to talk about the consequences of using
them.

Thanks

Michal