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Author Topic: Anglo-Saxon as a term  (Read 16553 times)

Horsa

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #15 on: November 29, 2019, 04:24:22 PM »
Cool.
I mean, until further notice, anyone and everyone can continue to use the term Anglo-Saxon. It's only really in the world of academia where the discussion is most pertinent and also going on alongside discussions of inclusion.
I've never been comfortable with the term, and in my posts here, I don't believe I've ever used the term 'Anglo-Saxon', though I may have written AS. For me, 'political correctness' isn't really a good reason not to do something. Some mistakes have been made in the name of political correctness: not having a Christmas Tree in a court of law, for example, but I've only ever experienced political correctness as based on the premise of courtesy between members and groups within a particular society.

And, if there are reasons not to use the term "Early English" or "pre-conquest English" (Ha ha! "PC English") I do not know of them, and am having trouble guessing what they might be. I mean the kingdom(s) of England were pluralistic places with Brythonic speaking, and (I believe) Latin speaking Britons, and later Danes Norwegians and people from the coastal areas of Götaland in Sweden, and goodness knows who else, who wouldn't be covered by the term "Englisc" in its sense as an ethnonym, though they were existing within the general political and indeed linguistic framework introduced by the continental arrivals/immigrants/invaders/conquerors what-have-you, so it's a good enough appellation for me and underlines a linguistic continuity from Aelfred up to Auden, so that's kind of why I prefer that term to Anglo-Saxon.
As I said, I personally have never been comfortable with the term, but that's just me and we can continue to refer to the Early English as Anglo-Saxons, or Angle-Saxon-Jute confederation or what-have-you until further notice.

Phyllis

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #16 on: November 30, 2019, 05:11:01 PM »
Having lit the blue touchpaper and retired I felt I might add my own thoughts as they have continued to evolve in the recent debate and further reading I have done.

I was shocked at the realisation that outside the UK the term Anglo-Saxon is understood so differently. I am not convinced there is a better term and feel we need to reclaim it. However, if this is in fact the way to proceed then we should do so fully aware of the fact that for a majority of people the term means something other than what we in this group mean. So we may need to qualify it at the same time.

Frankly I do not want to be misunderstood. I do not want to make people feel uncomfortable. Why would I? I may not have understood earlier how the term was perceived but I am no longer in ignorance.

But while I'm talking to you lot I will probably still use it, just as I use technical jargon when discussing matters of IT / computer topics with other ICT professionals (but never end users) :)



Phyllis

peter horn

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #17 on: December 01, 2019, 03:46:30 PM »
I was amazed and very concerned at the numerous political  posts surrounding the 'International society of Anglo-Saxonists' on the net. this will do great harm to that society and to AS Studies generally.


I do not want to see similar posts on the Gegaderung. 


In this regard the attention of Members is drawn to the notice at the top of the Home page.


Peter Horn Wita
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Eanflaed

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #18 on: December 02, 2019, 01:09:40 PM »

Locian

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #19 on: December 02, 2019, 07:05:08 PM »
Anglo-Saxon as term coined in the 19th C?  Perhaps.  But we all know the verse from the Parker MS of 937AD:

siÞÞan easten hider
ENGLE OND SEAXE up becoman
ofer brad brimu Brytene sohtan

I'm sure that the Anglo-Saxons had many ways to refer to themselves.  So why not Anglo-Saxon?
Þurh þone wudu Locian

Locian

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #20 on: December 02, 2019, 07:22:34 PM »

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/scholars-defend-anglo-saxon-name- At last some common sense!

Long may common sense continue against the ridiculous PC onslaught.
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Horsa

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #21 on: December 04, 2019, 04:16:06 PM »
What are the arguments against using "Early English" or "Pre-conquest English"?

peter horn

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #22 on: December 05, 2019, 03:10:31 PM »
What are the arguments against using "Early English" or "Pre-conquest English"?


"The pre-conquest up becomen ofer brad brim"


I think not
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Horsa

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #23 on: December 10, 2019, 07:27:24 PM »
Hello again Leofe gesiþas

I am not being contrary. I am not attacking anyone’s preference for the term ‘Anglo-Saxon’ over other terms. My comments are made in the spirit of good-natured, good-humoured debate. As I have said, at least for the time being, the discussion over ‘Anglo-saxon’ is raging in the Academy, and it is of little import which term we laypeople - enthusiastic knowledgeable and skillful amateurs – prefer to employ. Having said that, we are indebted to the work of the academy past and present so it’s interesting to keep track of, and voice opinions on, the debate going on there.

While I’ve never been particularly fond of ‘anglo-saxon’, and prefer other terms, I am in full sympathy with Phyllis’ statement that the racist identitarians should not have the right to invest their meanings into language that we use for utterly friendly and pacific, and dare I say inclusive, pursuits.I’m reminded of the case in Sweden where a far-right group appropriated the Tyr rune, and it is now deemed by a court of law to be a Nazi symbol (in certain contexts. It resembles an up arrow, so a comic got some good comedy out of “Nazi” signs on the Stockholm subway train system “One ticket, One journey, One Führer!”). Similarly, a German mid-century fascist political party appropriated the sun wheel symbol, flipped it and it’s now indelibly associated with unspeakable atrocity, loss of life, and odious ideas which is brought to mind every time I pass the Chinese buddhist association premises in West Toronto.

In any case, I am having difficulty following some of the points being made here. Perhaps, because they are made briefly and in haste, or conversely they are read briefly and in haste.


I mentioned legitimate problems with the term ‘Anglo-saxon’ that doesn't even include the current discussion in academia around its origins and use in contexts heavily characterized by racism. It was then said that there were problems with using the terms “Early English” and “Pre-conquest English” without further elaboration.

It was also said that it didn’t matter how the Early English referred to themselves, but how we should refer to them. This is a fair point. It is normally the courteous thing to do with ethno-cultural groups to use the name they prefer or which they use to refer to themselves. In Canada, for example, the indigenous peoples prefer to be referred to as “first nations” rather than “Indians” and out of respect and courtesy, this is the term employed settler Canadians. 

Taking this as the model, I like to refer to the mediaeval political-cultural group/s as “English” or “Early English” or "Early Mediaeval English” or 'pre-conquest English" as the early English referred to themselves in English almost exclusively as ‘Englisc’. As noted before, in Latin and mainly with very specific political/judicial or religious/spiritual meanings, they referred to themselves as ‘anglo-saxorum’.The difference between the First Nations and the mediaeval English is, of course, that the latter are an historical group and the object of study and the former is a contemporary group and a subject in nation to nation relations. In this case it is of less importance to refer to the Englisc by the name they prefer to use, and it is impossible (at the moment) to ask them how they would like people a thousand years thence to refer to them. Add to this that it was said in this thread that there are, in fact, problems with referring to the Early English as “Early English”.

When I asked out of curiosity, and interest in other views, for an example of these problems. I was answered with a line of Old English poetry with the plural nouns Engle and Seaxe (which are not the adjective anglo-saxon) replaced with a modern English word: ‘conquest’.This does not answer my question as to what the problems with “early English” as a term might be, and moreover, seems to be an assertion of how the early mediaeval English preferred to refer to themselves, which is in contradiction to the statement that it does not matter so much what the early English used to refer to themselves.


I say ‘seems’ as this poem is not an example of how the early English referred to themselves:
 “… Ne wearð wæl māre
 on ðȳs īglande    ǣfre gȳta
 folces gefylled    beforan ðyssum
 sweordes ecgum,    ðæs ðe ūs secgað bēc,
 ealde ūðwitan,    siþþan ēastan hider
 Engle and Seaxe    ūpp becōmon,
 ofer brāde brimu    Brytene sōhton,”
Nor has there on this island

been ever yet a greater number slain,
killed by the edges of the sword before
This time, as books make known to us, and old
and learned scholars, after hither came
The Angles and Saxons from the east
Over the broad sea sought the land of Britain.
 
I used Richard Hamer’s translation rather than my own. It came from a book with the title “Choice of Anglo Saxon verse’ 


As we can see from this poem, the author is not referring to the early Mediaeval English but Germanic peoples of the continent in late antiquity. The author is referring to historical groups not to his or her own cultural political group. And he or she is using them as a time reference not as an identity marker.

“since records began” “since the fall of the roman empire” “since before there was even an Englelond,” are rough loose paraphrases.

So, are there problems with modern enthusiasts describing the the dominant culture in what is now England using the phrases "early English" or "pre-conquest English"? If so, what are they?
« Last Edit: December 10, 2019, 07:29:08 PM by Horsa »

peter horn

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #24 on: December 18, 2019, 01:36:52 PM »
Im not comfortable with the term 'pre-conquest English'   :)


I prefer "Here comes the Anglo-Saxons" to "Here comes the pre-Conquest English"


see also WW 192 Page 6, just issued.


In my AS books the term "Anglo-Saxon" often appears in the title/





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cynewulf

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #25 on: February 21, 2020, 04:36:35 PM »
Hi


Just catching up with this discussion.


I have always been very clear in my understanding of the Anglo-Saxon period, and its peoples. No need to change. The term should NOT be appropriated by American racists or as a term of no great endearment by the followers of De Gaulle who used 'les anglo-saxons' to refer to the US/UK governments of the 20th century - how many errors are there in that one ? No, Anglo-Saxon should stay as it is. What would the wokes prefer us to call Anglo-Saxon Chronicle ? My books refer to the historical period as the Anglo-Saxon period and the language as Old English. End of.


It is a sad indictment of today's society that there are too many professional offence-takers objecting to innocent terms. Leave our sleeping AS dog to lie !!  >:(

Eanflaed

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #26 on: February 22, 2020, 05:49:53 PM »
Well said Cynewulf!

cynewulf

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Re: Anglo-Saxon as a term
« Reply #27 on: March 02, 2020, 12:09:20 PM »
Thanks Eanflaed

I've just read the most absurd PC rubbish on the ISAS site. If it wasn't serious it would be hilarious.....how PC Americans tie themselves in knots trying to avoid terms which might possibly offend the over-sensitive. Well let them carry on their pointless debate. I ask again, what would these people have us call the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle ?