Press "Enter" to skip to content

I saw a post that this word is an antisemitic slur, I’m looking for some expert opinions because I can’t find much online

I came across a post on Facebook that said “go**in and g *psy are slurs and you need to remove them from your vocabulary.” And I was like, yeah, that second one is a well known slur, definitely don’t say that. But I couldn’t even figure out what the first one was supposed to be. After scanning the comments for clues, I found out it was “goblin” and that this was apparently an antisemitic slur.

I’m gonna go into my research on the topic and it’ll take a bit so: TL;DR for the rest of the post: have you heard this stance? How do you feel about it?

I had never heard of this before so I decided to do some research. As a word nerd, I headed to my etymology app and found the history is from 14th century French, and it has always been a word to refer to the mythical creature. No roots in or ties to religion.That doesn’t really mean much though, so I checked the usage history thinking if it was a common slur, I’d see an uptick during the 40s for sure. Instead I found a downward trend. Again, doesn’t mean much. Could be a more recent development. Okay, time to go to Google for more info cuz I wasn’t getting anywhere.

“Goblin as a slur”

The first result is a blog post talking about the antisemitic depictions of goblins and the parallels to anti-jewish propaganda, big noses, hoards wealth, etc. The next result was a fairly low activity tweet saying this word is NOT antisemitic, and people need to stop spreading the idea. Comments were saying it seems more antisemitic to make the comparison. The next several Google results were how “goblin mode” was Oxfords word of the year 2022. Then another blog post that was almost the same as the first. A few Reddit and Quora posts also showed up where people were asking about this, and again the general consensus was a no. For any semi commonly used slur, you can find endless news articles, government agencies, and awareness groups talking about the history, why it’s bad, and why you shouldn’t say it. I didn’t see anything of the sort here. The biggest supporters of this stance were blog posts, and anyone can own a blog and say whatever they want.

To be clear, there is no denying that there have been eyebrow-raising depictions of goblins in recent media. A prime example is from the Harry Potter movies. But that doesn’t seem to be the norm. Dungeons and Dragons, Magic the Gathering, Lord of the Rings, and plenty of other fantasy settings include goblins with no (obvious to me) antisemitic undertones at all.

So where did that leave me? Well, it’s not a term I’d use as an insult anyway, but I would definitely say that I could see calling a Jewish person a goblin would be pretty offensive. As far as it being a slur though? I think I’m leaning towards the stance that it’s more antisemitic to draw the comparison than it is to use the word.

I tried to strike up a conversation on the original post and the page deleted my comment and said there would be no discussions, no changing their mind. But they also admitted they were not Jewish. So I really want to hear “from the source”, if you will. Do you find this word to be a slur or offensive? Should we stop using it in our daily lives? If so, is there a proposed alternative name for the lil chaotic creatures of myth?

Also gotta end this by saying: if this IS considered a slur, apologies for saying it about 15 times. I’m here trying to learn and to make sure I’m not being antisemitic with my language. I’m not trying to be inflammatory or disrespectful. Thanks for reading my book.

submitted by /u/Steady_Ri0t
[link] [comments]
Source: Reditt