Name calling in Thailand

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StevePIraq
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Name calling in Thailand

Post by StevePIraq » Thu Jul 27, 2017 12:36 pm

[Mod Edit] I thought this might generate some discussion, so have created the thread for you.
Moved from viewtopic.php?f=8&p=444084#p444084
handdrummer wrote:
Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:54 am
The biggest benefit in being an expat ( I despise that term) is that I can leave.
Would you sooner be called a Farang? I personally find that very offensive
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Re: Biggest Benefit to Being Expat

Post by J.J.B. » Thu Jul 27, 2017 1:09 pm

StevePIraq wrote:
Thu Jul 27, 2017 12:36 pm
handdrummer wrote:
Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:54 am
The biggest benefit in being an expat ( I despise that term) is that I can leave.
Would you sooner be called a Farang? I personally find that very offensive
I understand Farang is a descriptive term in Thai, not a pejorative one.

There's always a price to pay for the life you choose. You choose to pay no tax and people choose not to give a toss if what they call you offends you or not. Seems fair enough.
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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by Big Boy » Thu Jul 27, 2017 4:04 pm

When I first started coming here, I was a large Westerner, and all Thais were like short bean poles. Not surprisingly, I was called by a multitude of pet names such as (apologies for my poor attempt at Thai words) pumpoi, wan. Of course, hearing them so much, I enquired what they meant, and found them amusing. These days of course, many Thais have caught me up/overtaken me in terms of waist size.

IMHO they don't use these words in a nasty way, just affection. They are not just used towards foreigners, but to Thais just as much.

We are just as bad. I was called a Nazi on here a couple of days ago (I took it as being in jest), but we do it. I would never get upset at being called a name. How many of us refer to the BIB?

I don't think the use of the word Farang is offensive, it's an easy way of giving us a group name.

Nearly every Thai I know has a nickname - they are not offended by that. When you apply a straight translation, they could be seen as offensive. It's just one of the quirks of Thailand, and quite harmless.
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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by Nereus » Thu Jul 27, 2017 4:16 pm

There is this post: viewtopic.php?t=17644

But, there is a big difference between a nickname, and calling somebody a name!
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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by Gregjam » Thu Jul 27, 2017 4:19 pm

It is not so much the name but the way it is used. I would say that in more than 99% of occasions when I am referred to as a farang it is not malicious and when it is the word itself is not malicious but rather the comments linked to it. "Sticks and stones...." and all that comes to mind. If you can understand it is sometimes better to just play dumb.

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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by RCer » Thu Jul 27, 2017 4:28 pm

"Farang (Thai: ฝรั่ง [faràŋ], colloquially [falàŋ]) is a generic Thai word for someone of European ancestry, no matter where they may come from. ... Edmund Roberts, US envoy in 1833, defined the term as "Frank (or European)."

Not offensive at all.

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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by 404cameljockey » Thu Jul 27, 2017 4:42 pm

BB please don't take offence I wasn't calling you in particular a nazi! I was just referring to the very vigilant roles that admins take in keeping threads on topic. Just tongue in cheek. Yes it was a jest, really. :)

And 'farang'? No issue with it, as said above it's just descriptive unless said with venom. I think the same can be said in most countries, for example 'ang moh' or 'gweilo' in Singapore/China. Racism exists worldwide, it's just the West that has tried hard to surpress it.

Don't you just think caucasians take less offense at things like this than some other races (although I think 'taff' and 'sweaty' would raise some hackles in the UK)?

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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by StevePIraq » Thu Jul 27, 2017 4:52 pm

For one thing my reference was not "name calling" it was group referencing, Expat & Farang are referencing a group of people NOT name calling. So this topic title is incorrect.

I have no problem in being called a Farang when I am in a shop or similar as the person stating Farang does not know my name, however I object to Thai family members who after being related to them for 10 years still call me "The Farang", they know my name but will not use it and I find that offensive.
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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by Big Boy » Thu Jul 27, 2017 5:15 pm

BB please don't take offence I wasn't calling you in particular a nazi! I was just referring to the very vigilant roles that admins take in keeping threads on topic. Just tongue in cheek. Yes it was a jest, really.
Don't worry, I've been called much worse, and people have meant it :oops:
I object to Thai family members who after being related to them for 10 years still call me "The Farang", they know my name but will not use it and I find that offensive.
OK, but Thais are often embarrassed if the say your name wrong. As an example, my real name is Neal. That has often been the subject of much laughter when people have been learning to say it. In about an hour's time, we have an old friend calling in to see us from the UK - his name is Errol. Although my wife has known him for about 30 years, it has been quite hilarious here listening to her practicing his name this afternoon. He is of Caribbean origin, and I'm sure somebody will refer to him as a 'chocolate man' before the evening is through simply because they can't say Errol. That would not be PC in the UK, but I doubt my friend will even flinch when they use the nickname. Of course, if your name is truly Steve, I don't see too many excuses :D
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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by RCer » Thu Jul 27, 2017 5:42 pm

I can hear it now, Neal pronounced as Near and Errol will be Ellor. 555

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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by Spitfire » Thu Jul 27, 2017 6:09 pm

The label "Farang" isn't that bad but definitely "Bak-si-da"[sic] has negative connotations, the latter much worse than the former and if I hear the latter then my contempt is earned straight away for the speaker as it's a pretty bad...but it's situational too and whether there is intent behind it. Mostly, there isn't, as it is usually due to lack of education on the subject of foreigners or a lack of exposure to foreigners, depends where you are. Most locals don't realize that Thailand would fall apart without migrants and foreigners visiting.

Everyone in the world should be forced to live in a different culture for at least 6 months and these problems would certainly be reduced.
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Re: RE: Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by hhinner » Thu Jul 27, 2017 7:59 pm

RCer wrote:I can hear it now, Neal pronounced as Near and Errol will be Ellor. 555
I think more likely Erron :)

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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by HHTel » Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:02 pm

My name is Terry. When I first met my wife she tried desperately to pronounce my name. The nearest she got was Charlie which I admitted 'will do'. More than 20 years later and all the family call me Charlie but when my wife speaks of me to others, she uses my name Terry (She finally learnt to pronounce it!)

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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by Spitfire » Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:08 pm

The R and the V are a problem when it comes to the locals pronouncing things in English correctly.

HHTel...surprised they didn't call you "Telly"....haha
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Re: Name calling in Thailand

Post by hhfarang » Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:36 pm

Sticks and stones....
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