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    #1

    a word refering to the color of the skin

    We use the words black and white to refer to the color of the skin. But what word do you use when the person has yellow skin and when the skin of the person is something between white and black ?

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    #2

    Re: a word refering to the color of the skin

    Black, white, yellow and brown were once used as simplistic adjectives to differentiate between various racial characteristics.

    Talking about skin colour is now a sensitive issue, so I couldn't possibly comment.

    Rover

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    #3

    Re: a word refering to the color of the skin

    Red, too. I agree that the prudent thing to do is not to discuss skin color at all.

  1. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: a word refering to the color of the skin

    If you actually know someone's nationality (by which I mean the country from which they hold a passport, not the American definition), then use it. Otherwise, I suggest you find another way of describing someone.

    I'm going out later with the Nigerian man who works in Accounts.
    Have you spoken to the Argentinian lady who started here yesterday? She's lovely. Do you know her name?
    I used to go to school with those three Irish guys in the corner of the bar.

    Of course, it would be better to refer to these people by name but sometimes that's just not possible.

    I would not recommend the following:

    I'm going out later with the black guy from accounts.
    Did you see that Oriental guy earlier?
    You know the one. The only white guy who plays basketball down there.
    A South American woman has started work here today.

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    #5

    Re: a word refering to the color of the skin

    I'm wondering what you find potentially offensive in "South American."

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    #6

    Re: a word refering to the color of the skin

    Quote Originally Posted by chrysanthemum View Post
    But what word do you use when the person has yellow skin
    Jaundiced.

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    #7

    Re: a word refering to the color of the skin


  2. shannico's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: a word refering to the color of the skin

    I think sallow is a nice way of describing oriental complexion.

    Google up sallow skin on google images and you'll see if that matches what you're trying to say.

    Hope this helps.

  3. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: a word refering to the color of the skin

    Quote Originally Posted by SoothingDave View Post
    I'm wondering what you find potentially offensive in "South American."
    I don't personally find it offensive, but many different nationalities have a complection which could belong to someone from South America, but could equally be from mainland Spain, central America, certain parts of Asia etc. I'm not suggesting that being South American is a problem, but you could easily be wrong. If you happen to know that the person you're talking about is Argentinian, then great.

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    #10

    Re: a word refering to the color of the skin

    "I think sallow is a nice way of describing oriental complexion."

    No . . . it really isn't nice.

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