From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Indigenous peoples of North America (Rated C-class)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Indigenous peoples of North America, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of Native Americans, Indigenous peoples in Canada, and related indigenous peoples of North America on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
C-Class article C  This article has been rated as C-Class on the project's quality scale.
 ???  This article has not yet received a rating on the project's importance scale.


There was an indication that citations are needed for the claim that "squaw" does not mean "cunt", so here and here.--droptone 05:15, 20 February 2006 (UTC)

THIS PAGE IS BIASED! Just wanted to put that obvious point out there. One of the references is to Squaw Peak's website. That's like saying the Rebel Flag is not bad, and then having a link to "sons of the confederacy" website. There's an obvious subjective slant. Ugabuga

the word squaw referred to the female genetalia, not to the young woman...Men of the tribe did not go ariund calling their women "squaws" anon user

Where is the evidence that the word 'squaw' was ever used in reference to 'vagina' or 'cunt'? Anyone who has read any primary documents knows that the white/euro authors seldom minced words and were very candid in displaying what we recognize today as racist terms. Given that, why has no one to date been able to document a single example of 'squaw' = 'vagina'? If such evidence exists, cite it. The evidence shows that this idea is of recent origin, a creation of uninformed activists minds. Many otherwise neutral words can be USED in a pejorative way.. "It's THEM again", "It's the INDIANS again" Enough real racism exists - we don't make the case better by exaggerating or asserting fanciful claims. Qureus1 10:28, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

As part Algonquin, I'm impressed by the article. My parents didn't have patience with political correctness overlaid upon the language by others, and my mother used squaw freely, meaning a woman, usually one married or of marriageable age. It was often used like the word 'Mrs'.
--UnicornTapestry (talk) 21:12, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

What kind of evidence is required? How do you site a racial/gender biased word that originated a long time ago, as in pre-information highway (aka internet).

Check this link to Lori Blondeau, a native artist who uses the word "squaw" in her work, she claims its very painful to be called "squaw". As a women I would be upset at being reduced to a "vagina" and have people tell me it means "Mrs.".

Here's evidence of "whatever you want to believe the word means", bottom line, there is some problem with it if its hurting people when they are called it.

Also, just because a woman uses the word to refer to herself doesn't mean the word isn't sexist, it merely reinforces the fact that women do enforce patriarchy and are prepetators as well as victims in regards to sexism.

See Bell Hooks for further information.

In that it refers to female people and not male people how can it be anything but sexist? Jasen betts (talk) 11:46, 9 August 2011 (UTC)

See the sexism article. "Sexist" usually means believing one sex (usually female) is inferior. Merely identifying people as female and male, as you did above, or using such words as "woman" and "man" is generally not considered sexist. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 13:25, 9 August 2011 (UTC)
Is it correct that "at present, the term is often held to be offensive"? Leaving aside the obviously false claims about the origins of the word, why should it be considered offensive? Doesn't it require more than the statement of one person to be regarded as offensive? (talk) 23:47, 3 December 2013 (UTC)
The "Controversy" section of the article cites three dictionaries saying that the word "can be" or "is" offensive, as well as insulting uses of it and more than one person's objections to it. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 15:42, 4 December 2013 (UTC)

There is another example of a Native Indian using the word "squaw" [[1]]. It doesn't look offensive, but it's hard to be conclusive. (talk) 18:28, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

I've edited the intro paragraph to make it less universal. It had read as though every Native American found "squaw" to be an offensive word. I left it open to some interpretation, but the article contradicts the idea that American Indians are united against the word. First, it's an Algonquin word, and no one except those who speak those languages has any reason to decide which of their words are offensive. (FWIW, the German, Roman, and Iroquoian languages are not Algonquin.) Second, the article explicitly refers to the misunderstanding of the word by those who don't speak one of the Algonquin languages, and it goes on to specifically talk about Algonquin efforts to "reclaim" the word. Controversy aside, imagine if Wikipedia stated that the French found the term "Belle" offensive. We'd squash that, of course, because it's a ridiculous claim credible only to people ignorant of the language. The same thing applies here, and we should give Native Americans as much credit for their languages as we'd give anyone else. Canute (talk) 00:29, 2 October 2015 (UTC)
There have been renewed efforts to make introductory paragraph leave only one possible interpretation of the use of "squaw". An editor who is invovled said I should not simply revert but bring this to the Talk page. Reading the article documents that the word has a legitimate Algonquian etymology as 'woman'. The idea that the word is a slur was launched into many people's minds by Susan Harjo on Oprah Winfrey's program in 1992. Saying something loud enough and often enough can make it true in the minds of many people. But the introduction to the article should still allow for non-pejorative interpretations of the word. I am not saying that the word is not a slur in the minds of many people today, but I am saying that the intro should allow for the historic and linguistic interpretation. Pete unseth (talk) 18:41, 8 December 2017 (UTC)
I just edited the intro paragraph again. I read the cited source for some of the content (by Vincent Schilling) and found that it did not contain support for some of the material for which it was cited, e.g. Inuit. Some of the content for which it was cited was simply not found in the Schilling piece. Also, the piece does not agree with some of the content, but rather disagreed with it. Therefore, I have gently edited this paragraph. The content about the word being seen as offensive is still intact in following paragraphs.

"Greedy" white man?[edit]

"Although labelling 'white man' as greedy was not without foundation".

I don't understand how THIS is not a racist statement.

Replace any other racial group for "white man", and it would be considered racist.

This should be removed. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 03:13, 28 February 2007 (UTC).

It should perhaps be rephrased a little—"Although using 'greedy' to mean 'white' man is understandable" or some such. However, I think that whole paragraph could go. It's enough to show that Sanders and Peek were wrong. If anything is needed, maybe it's a parenthetical note that wasichu literally means "one who takes the fat", and readers can draw their own conclusions about S. and P.'s reliability. After all, we Americans sometimes use "Caucasian" with the same meaning. A translation into Iroquois might just note that it means "white" without adding that it literally means "from the Caucausus mountains". I'll wait a little while before I do this, though, in case anyone objects. —JerryFriedman 17:38, 1 March 2007 (UTC)
Sorry, I got started editing and couldn't wait. If anyone objects, we can resolve it. —JerryFriedman 16:39, 2 March 2007 (UTC)

Reversion of citeneeded tags[edit]

I put the two tags back in this sentence:

During the 1970s, some American Indian activists objected to the term, and a number of false etymologies emerged,[citation needed] apparently arising from the assumption that European settlers had always regarded Native women as easy sexual partners, and that, therefore, the word "squaw" must have been equivalent with the English word "vagina."[citation needed]

There's no citation below that there were a number of false etymologies, or that Europeans thought Native women were "easy", or that "squaw" must have meant vagina or vulva. In fact, without citations after two months, all those claims should probably be deleted. But I'll wait a little longer. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 03:24, 18 January 2008 (UTC)


This sentence appears in the article, seemingly apropos of nothing:

One author, for example, described the "universal" Indian squaw as "squat, angular, pig-eyed, ragged, wretched, and insect-haunted" (Steele 1883).

Why this appears, I can't tell, unless someone confused the English word "squat" with the Algonquin word "squaw". It otherwise seems to have nothing to do with the article. If we can't figure out what/why/how it contributes, it should be deleted.

--UnicornTapestry (talk) 18:40, 18 July 2008 (UTC)

I just changed it to show the complete quotation—I hope that makes the relevance clear. I'm glad you added the citeneeded tags, by the way. Soon it will be time to remove that material unless it's supported. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 21:51, 18 July 2008 (UTC)

Rarity of spelling[edit]

Is it worth mentioning in the article that it is the most widely-known non-onomatopoeic English word in common use that contains both a q and a w? The reason is that W is not used in Latinic languages and Q is not used in Germanic ones, so only words from outside those origins in English would use both letters. The only other words using both are either onomatopoeic (e.g., squawk) or less common loan-words (e.g., Qawwali). Grutness...wha? 01:48, 25 July 2008 (UTC)

It's not jumping out at me as something that needs to be in the article—just one man's my opinion. It would certainly need a citation. By the way, Q does occur in a few English words of Anglo-Saxon origin, such as "quake", "queen", "quick", "bequeath", as it does in modern German, such as Qual and quellen, so the explanation isn't that simple. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 03:40, 25 July 2008 (UTC)


The line about Asimov has troubled me enough that I've returned to it a couple of times. I'm starting to feel it's not appropriate for the topic.

  • The quote gives no reference to the story.
  • The date given is 1950 which is more than 300 years later after the white man recorded the use of squaw meaning a woman of age.
  • In the science fiction story the term Earthie-squaw supposedly insulting, but
  • we don't know wha kind of science fictional world it is.
  • we don't know if the offending word is Earthie, squaw, or the combination.

Finally, the relationship to the topic is tenuous at best. It's not historical but fictional, and science fiction at that. For all we know, Earthie-cowboy might have been insulting in the story as well.

It's more a topic for the talk page. I'd like us to consider either removing the line or moving it here.

--UnicornTapestry (talk) 18:33, 1 August 2008 (UTC)

FWIW, the novel will be Asimov's 1950 novel Pebble in the Sky, which had a character called Claudy. I don't have a copy of it, so I can't check the quote. Grutness...wha? 00:19, 2 August 2008 (UTC)
It is indeed Pebble, and the reference is in the References section. By the way, there's a "limited preview" available at Google Books, if anyone wants to check the quotation. How did we live before Google Books?
The quotation isn't in the part of the article about the origin of squaw. It's in the part about derogatory uses and statements that the word is derogatory in the 19th and 20th centuries but before the "vagina" claims. A quotation from 1950 is appropriate in that section.
If you want to learn a little about what kind of science-fictional world it is without reading the whole novel (though it's short and has its good points), you could look at Pebble in the Sky. (I just linked the reference in this article to that article, which I should have done earlier.)
"Earthie" by itself does seem to be insulting in Pebble. "Squaw" doesn't occur in the book except in this compound (twice—the second occurrence doesn't shed any light). I think it's pretty clear that "squaw" makes the term more "richly insulting" than the mere "Earthie girl". The male equivalent, by the way, is "Earthie-buck", if that helps. There aren't any other compounds with "Earthie".
Indeed it's science fiction, but science-fiction writers use the words of their time (mostly). It seems to me that Asimov's use of "squaw" as an insult of the imagined distant future shows that he heard insulting connotations in it in the real 1950. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 14:56, 2 August 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for the information, Jerry. I've read a fair amount of Asimov including the bloody long Trilogy, but hadn't read Pebble.
Before proceeding, I need to mention I'm part Algonquin, and my grandmother freely used 'squaw' among her friends, the word having no pejorative meaning before her time. The earliest claim of a negative meaning seems to be 1990s, possibly 1970s, so I suspect it's more likely Asimov fabricated the term, much like John Brunner used current words (slit and shiv) as derogatory words in his novels. (Brunner went to far as to create a fictionalized dictionary. Very clever author, by the way.)
Asimov was born in Russia, grew up in a Jewish Brooklyn neighborhood, and remained there until the late 1950s when he moved to Boston. Algonquin lands covers roughly the eastern half of the US and Canada, so he wouldn't have encountered negative use there. I'm becoming convinced he used it as a "term of art", a fictional construction to further his story.
At best, I feel the Asimov reference is an interesting footnote, not an indication the term was used outside his novel. After all, this is futuristic science fiction. In a vacuum of other sources, it's possible Asimov's use created a circular self-justifying reference, to wit: A writer of speculative fiction used the term in a science fiction story, therefore the term must have been in use.
This use wouldn't pass any kind of academic review. What options do we have if we choose to keep the reference, but not give it etymological credence?
--UnicornTapestry (talk) 14:02, 4 August 2008 (UTC)
I see two issues that are important for the article. The first is whether "squaw" was used derogatorily before the late 1970s or '90s. It definitely was, as the article shows. Your comment on this prompted me to do some more research, which is a good thing, and I added two more examples today. I see more by searching on "call her a squaw", and I think I'm about to add a significant one from a Mohawk writer. However, most early uses seem to be neutral or include hostility that's hard to tell from prejudice against Indians or women. For instance, there's a lot of someone calling a man or boy a squaw as a taunt, especially for supposed cowardice. For another, "Like a squaw or a dog, poor Lizzie Blennerhasset followed Long Dick." (The Living Age, by Eliakim Little, 1876). I can't tell whether there's some special connotation in the word "squaw" or whether the author just thought Native women were servile (as he makes clear later on the same page). So for many the word was neutral, as it was for your grandmother; for some it was derogatory.
The other important issue is whether the Asimov quotation should be in the article. Of course it's a "fictional construction to further his story", as you put it, but I still think it's good evidence for the connotations at the time—why wouldn't Asimov have constructed "Earthie-wench" or some such, except that he felt that "squaw" added extra insult? (And I strongly suspect that Brunner used "slit" and "shiv" in accordance with their meanings and connotations.) But it's less important now that we have more examples. Maybe a footnote, as you mentioned, would be a good compromise.
As a side issue, in New York Asimov was probably as likely to meet Mohawk speakers as speakers of any Algonquin language, and the Mohawks are precisely the people who came up with the incorrect etymology. Indeed, the only Mohawk man I know has assured me that it's true, as he learned in childhood ('60s or maybe late '50s), and suspects that a Mohawk traveler or trader was in Massachusetts to meet the Pilgrims and be responsible for the 1622 citation. But it seems far more likely to me that the tone he saw in the word came from what he read and heard from whites, and would have been the same in any other part of the country. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 21:46, 4 August 2008 (UTC)
Good work, Jerry. I suspect using 'squaw' in the context you mention is probably like saying "You throw like a girl," or saying a boy is a sissy or old woman. It's probably a gender zing rather than racial.
I didn't follow your last paragraph, where the Mohawks are said to have come up with incorrect etymology. My understanding is that Plains Indians (and Western Indians) floated the incorrect etymology, unless you meant something different. In the paragraph you quote ("Poor little Wanda"), were you able to interpret a meaning?
I don't have a Larousse/Hachette dictionary handy to dig into the first use, but Cassells (college) French dictionary lists 'squaw' as being "Indian woman". French explorers often explored place English settlers hadn't gotten to and they would have had a good notion.
I've been impressed that Wikipedia has managed to avoid hysteria in this article. Some older generation Indians have been upset to see the word misunderstood and misused, and I'm glad we make the effort to get it as right as we possibly can.
--UnicornTapestry (talk) 15:34, 5 August 2008 (UTC)
Yes, lots of gender insults. "An Abenaki who spoke English cried out: ' If you are so bold, why do you stay in a garrison house like a squaw ? Come out and fight like a man !'" Parkman, The Jesuits in North America in the Seventeenth Century.
The "genital" etymology arose because "squaw" resembles the last syllable of the Mohawk word for vagina (or is it vulva?). The Mohawks would have noticed this before anyone else. I don't know who Sanders and Peek were, but I have to imagine they heard this etymology from a Mohawk.
On Pauline Johnson, I think that at that time mention of a woman's reputation and her virtue, otherwise unspecified, means her chastity. When the hero's friends call Wanda a squaw, it doesn't seem that Johnson means they're calling her incompetent or a liar or a thief or anything like that. So to Johnson, "squaw" meant a promiscuous woman, and I think it's possible, though not certain, that she believed it came from the word for vagina in her tribe's language—something she could never have ment.ioned in print.
I agree with you that there's a lot of biased stuff on this subject and it's important for this article to be calm and neutral, so I'm glad you think it is. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 04:29, 6 August 2008 (UTC)
You're welcome, Jerry. The Mohawk would have been a subset of the broader Algonquin/Iroquoian. The -skwa suffix was merely a feminine ending, a little like -elle en françois but not as broad in, say, Latin. I suspect the descendents of Plains Indians misinterpreted the suffix, which resulted in the current controversy.
Although I'm not very familiar with the concept, some tribes were reputed to have accepted effeminate males who worked with women rather than men. Supposedly they were called men-skaws, which wasn't an insult, per se, but could be interpreted out of context as one. I have no direct knowledge, so I consider it anecdotal.
I lean toward conservatve interpretations, having grown up where negative connotations were unheard of. It's a pity the Old Ones didn't take the controversy seriously and speak up while the could.
Thanks for your scholarship, Jerry. Let's demote the Asimov reference because I think your contributions are more pertinent.
--UnicornTapestry (talk) 15:58, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

Done. (And my stack of colons fell over.)

From what I read, the Algonquian and Iroquoian languages are entirely unrelated (despite cultural similarities between tribes in the same region). Thus the fact that an Iroquoian word for "vagina" has what appears to be an Algonquin suffix meaning "woman" is a total coincidence, like Nahuatl chāntli, house, and Canadian French chantier, a lumberjack's cabin. (The latter is more likely the source of "shanty".) Ahem. Where was I? Yes, total coincidence. So it would be natural for Iroquois speakers to misunderstand English speakers calling Iroquois women "squaws".

I too have heard of Native men who lived as women; no doubt if they lived now, some would get surgery. I suspect that if we looked into it, some tribes accepted the practice and some forbade anything remotely resembling it. A brief mention with references wouldn't hurt the discussion of "squaw-man" in this article in my opinion. —JerryFriedman (Talk) 04:18, 12 August 2008 (UTC)

Beetle Bailey comics character[edit]

One of the characters who appears in the Norwegian issues of Beetle Bailey, sub-section "Rødøye" (lit. "Red-eye") is a woman named "Squawmamma" ("Squaw-mom"). Does this term apply only to the US/UK? Cid SilverWing 19:13, 15 April 2010 (UTC)

I think it would be fine to have a brief section about uses in other languages. I see the word has been adopted in Italian, for instance. The Norwegian comic-book character could go there if properly sourced.
Do I understand correctly? Beetle Bailey (renamed "Billy", apparently a clever Norwegian pun) comes out in comic books in Norway. those books contain other stories as well, including one called "Rødøye", and that story (which has nothing to do with Beetle Bailey or Mort Walker) has a character named "Squawmamma". And is she American Indian? —JerryFriedman (Talk) 19:05, 16 April 2010 (UTC)

Linguistic map[edit]

File:Femme algoquien.png -- AnonMoos (talk) 19:16, 21 August 2010 (UTC)

Not a huge deal, but...[edit]

The last sentence in the "Claims of Obscene Meaning" section has the word "otsikwa" referenced, while previously it is referenced as "otsiskwa". I thought about changing it, but I'll leave it up to someone more knowledgeable than myself to clarify this —Preceding unsigned comment added by Aaronburro (talkcontribs) 03:20, 6 November 2010 (UTC)


Why is this page under canadian indigenous people? I know for a fact "squaw" was used in tribes in other parts of north america. it was used often in the book "Panther In The Sky," about Tecumseh, a shawnee, who remained mostly in today's United States territory. and by the way, it was never used as a synonym for genitalia....I have never heard it that way before. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:07, 4 October 2011 (UTC)


This article has recently received some heavy editing from members of a university class whose course is entitled "Race, Femininity and Representation" and who were encouraged to edit by their professor. I'm not sure if the class was covered by our scheme for such things or whether they winged it but, either way, someone with more knowledge of the subject than me should probably review recent changes for possible undue weight etc. - Sitush (talk) 19:04, 24 December 2014 (UTC)

Now reverted by Nyttend. Thanks for looking at it. - Sitush (talk) 11:21, 25 December 2014 (UTC)
You're welcome. Besides the reason that I gave in the edit summary, advancing the "this is evil" point of view, the class seemed to have no idea that this is a US topic as well; they had converted it into something almost purely Canadian. I'm not the most knowledgeable on the subject either; I could just see that the overall result was negative. There may be some positive changes that should be restored. Nyttend (talk) 14:14, 25 December 2014 (UTC)

Poor citations[edit]

Someone has added names and years in brackets at the end of certain sentences as a means of sourcing them. This is not how citations work. You can choose to keep it short like that, but at least providing a page number is the bare minimum. It's currently unverifiable and not helpful. Bataaf van Oranje (Prinsgezinde) (talk) 14:27, 19 June 2016 (UTC)

Edit warring to preserve slur[edit]

@Pete unseth: Really? Do you go to other racial slur pages and argue that, since only minority populations are harmed by them that only "some" see them as offensive, or that since it's only "recently" that these populations have gotten some degree of access to mainstream coverage that the historical views of them should still predominate?[2] You said you didn't want to edit war, but that is precisely what you are doing. I'll also be adding other sources, since you don't seem to think the current ones are sufficient. - CorbieV 19:35, 8 December 2017 (UTC)

Actually, looking over the sourcing here, I reiterate what I've said in edit summaries: Pete, If you think it's not clear that there is overwhelming consensus on how offensive this is, you are simply not reading the sources we've already cited, as well as the very first dicdefs that come up in google searches. - CorbieV 20:14, 8 December 2017 (UTC)

Trying to address this slowly and by Wikipedia rules. The source that was cited as confirmation that the word is overwhemingly pejorative, the article by Schilling, is very clear that there is no consensus on this even among Native Americans. Also, the article does not include the Metis and Inuit. I left intact the section about it's mostly recent pejorative connotations (especially after the Oprah Winfrey incident). Also, I left intact the scholarly section on the etymology of the term, meaning "woman". The intro needs to be a general introduction to the topic, despite the fact that some feel strongly about one interpretation. Also, the deletion of the category suggests loss of NPV, since the origin is a simple loanword for "woman", though the connotations are now changing. Please let the intro include the very genuine differences, including the Native American woman quoted in Schilling's article, "I understand the concern of Indian women who feel insulted by this word, but I respectfully suggest that we reclaim our language rather than let it be taken over."Pete unseth (talk) 02:56, 10 December 2017 (UTC)
Why are you prioritizing Schilling's article? It's far from the best source, and we could easily cut it. You did something very odd and inappropriate with your edit. You removed better sources, that quote several Indigenous women academics, and then moved Schilling's very brief article up, and then cut the content that had been sourced, with the reason that Schilling didn't source it (!). That is truly bizarre. Read the other, much better, sources, and take the time to understand them, before attempting going further with this disruptive editing. What you did was deceptive. Actually, the only lack of consensus Schilling indicates is about the "origins" ("The jury is still out as far as where squaw originated from" - and if Vince thinks this is unclear, he hasn't thoroughly studied the linguistics. Honestly, I think the piece is just clickbait). You even misread the subtitle of the piece. The article is basically useless as a source as we have all the other sources cited in more detail in the article. You aren't even reading that brief, pop culture, unsourced blurb correctly. - CorbieV 18:35, 10 December 2017 (UTC)
While I am trying to discuss this on the Talk page rather than editing the article, as you suggested, you continue to edit the intro to make it more strongly support your point of view. You accused me of edit warring; I am not sure of a precise definition of edit warring, but your actions seem closer to edit warring than mine. In my editing, I was trying to keep the cited sources, though moving them. If I lost some, my sincere apologies. Some content was originally sourced as based on Schilling, so I removed it, such as Inuit. Schilling did not mention the Inuit. In addition to what he cited as lack of consensus on the etymology, Schilling showed there is lack of consensus on attitudes toward the word. "I understand the concern of Indian women who feel insulted by this word, but I respectfully suggest that we reclaim our language rather than let it be taken over." As far as the etymology of the word "squaw", historical linguists reached consensus long ago. The question for us now is whether the word is only seen as pejorative and as a slur, not its etymology. The Native American I just quoted from Schilling's article is an example of a Native American who believes that the word should not be seen as a slur. I think this supports my call to have a more neutral introduction, but include strong claims that it is a slur in the body of the article. Let's keep talking. Pete unseth (talk) 19:50, 10 December 2017 (UTC)
Please re-read what I said about Schilling as a source. "Native American, First Nations, Inuit and Métis" is how we write about the Indigenous North American communities when we name them individually, instead of with a shorthand, pan-Indian term. Just look to the right of the opening text, at the info box. It is how we write about these communities when we write on this topic. Again, you are privileging a brief, inferior source and then complaining that it doesn't source the content. Read. The. Sources. You are revert-warring, and you deleted an excellent source that quoted multiple Native women who are experts in this field, either because you don't want their views represented here, or because you simply clicked "undo" and returned to an earlier version. I strongly suspect you aren't reading any of these in-depth sources. One person quoted in Schilling's brief, derivative pop piece does not outnumber all the other WP:RS sources we have here, sources that clearly indicate an overwhelming consensus that this English word is nothing but a slur. Even Schilling does not indicate that this English word is used in-community. I can assure you, Native people do not use this word in English. It's seen as abhorrent. Re-read what I said. You are not getting it. Let me state it clearly: The English word Squaw is only a slur. The only words that aren't a slur are not the English word this article is about. The only words any Natives are defending are other words in Indigenous languages that are simply related to this word. This English language word is seen as a hideous slur. If you are getting another impression from the sources, you are having a comprehension issue and you are attempting to misrepresent the sources. - CorbieV 20:15, 10 December 2017 (UTC)

The word 'squaw' does not occur in any indigenous language in North America. No Native American or FNIM in thei right mind uses the term. We did not coin it, it is a linquistic bastardization that has been used derogatorily throughout history. Shilling is not an indigenous linguist nor is he an indigenous woman, he is the author or a click bait piece that far to much weight is trying to be put on. This is absolutely ridiculous. There are excellent sources already standing, I cannot believe this point is even being argued. Indigenous girl (talk) 03:28, 11 December 2017 (UTC)

Pete, the pronunciation in dialect when it comes to say, Narragansett or Abenaki isn't the same as one pronounces the slur. The use of an in context in language in culture word or portion of a word or term that sounds similar to the english language squaw is not the same as my saying to my friend or neighbor, "Hey squaw, let's go get a cup of coffee." That would be appalling and not something that happens in community. Indigenous girl (talk) 03:54, 11 December 2017 (UTC)

Some have complained that Wikipedia is losing editors because of unfriendly (or worse) responses from other editors. Let's strive to edit accurately, respectfully, and kindly.Pete unseth (talk) 03:00, 14 December 2017 (UTC)
It's obvious to anyone with at least half a brain that in most contexts the word 'squaw' is not even remotely offensive. But this page has obviously been hijacked by gender activists who insist that the term is now "universally" considered to be "highly offensive". This page is an absolute joke and needs to have its neutrality disputed. (talk) 20:30, 23 December 2017 (UTC)
Instead of insulting other users, please offer any reliable sources you have in support of your position. Thank you. 331dot (talk) 20:34, 23 December 2017 (UTC)
I just looked up one of the sources that is invoked five times in the article. The source is only a statement of a position, making linguistic claims that serious scholars like Ives Goddard have shown to be incorrect. It is a brief, inferior source. " |title=SQUAW - Facts on the Eradication of the "S" Word |accessdate=2017-12-10 |publisher=Western North Carolina Citizens For An End To Institutional Bigotry|quote=When people ask "why now?" explain that: Through communication and education American Indian people have come to understand the derogatory meaning of the word. American Indian women claim the right to define ourselves as women and we reject the offensive term squaw." I plan to delete the source, so I thought it only appropriate to warn y'all. Pete unseth (talk) 00:20, 4 January 2018 (UTC)

It is not an inferior source. It is one that counteracts systemic bias. It is an educational site that has archived resources from The American Indian Movement. It is a prime example of how Native Women's voices need to be represented on this topic, not colonial ones. Reading the text there, and the background in this article, should make it clear to you why Indigenous articles sometimes have to rely on sites like this, and why they are often more accurate than misinformation collected by non-Native men who happened to get a position in academia. - CorbieV 19:13, 4 January 2018 (UTC)

I'm really not comfortable with an article that is biased toward white washing a word that is absolutely viewed by NA/FNIM folks as a slur. The words of indigenous women are necessary when it comes to a word that has a historically and contemporary derogatory use tied to it. Indigenous girl (talk) 19:36, 4 January 2018 (UTC)

Another source that quotes members of AIM. Adding later on. "From Negro Creek to Wop Draw, place names offend - Demeaning names were often given to areas settled by ethnic or racial minorities". - CorbieV 20:16, 4 January 2018 (UTC)

The whole article seems biased and has a condescending tone, while using heavily loaded words (”universally offensive”). The source discussed above is obviously a politically charged advocacy site, so anything taken from there should be taken in that light. Claims that a word – any word – has some sort of universal, immutable meaning that can be ”understood” is factually wrong. Instead, words mean what people take them to mean, making them fuzzy and subjective. Notions of offensiveness are fundamentally arbitrary and subject to change with the passage of time, and can also be intentionally manipulated for i.e. political aims. Such meanings cannot be unilaterally decided by any one party. Word games, however, are one form of power and are quite prevalent in the world today, which is why one should do one's best to try to find neutral sources, not ones that advocate a position. Zillious (talk) 11:53, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just modified one external link on Squaw. Please take a moment to review my edit. If you have any questions, or need the bot to ignore the links, or the page altogether, please visit this simple FaQ for additional information. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, you may follow the instructions on the template below to fix any issues with the URLs.

You may set the |checked=, on this template, to true or failed to let other editors know you reviewed the change. If you find any errors, please use the tools below to fix them or call an editor by setting |needhelp= to your help request.

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

If you are unable to use these tools, you may set |needhelp=<your help request> on this template to request help from an experienced user. Please include details about your problem, to help other editors.

Cheers.—InternetArchiveBot (Report bug) 05:05, 14 January 2018 (UTC)