Is Farang an f word?

Re: Is Farang an f word?

Postby Jed Robinson on Thu Jul 30, 2009 9:08 am

Being English born and spending half my life in Australia and being referred to as 'Pommie......' or 'Pom' on many occasions,you really do have to get used to it and get on with it.I've stated before that racism (conscious or unconscious)is there in all forms of society and political correctness is really just a naffy word that some bureaucrat thought up in order to appease his masters.The only thing I'd like to add to this debate,is that it is not the actual word/words that are offensive,it's people's attitude in their behavior towards individuals that concerns me.Ignorance I think springs to mind! :cheers:
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Re: Is Farang an f word?

Postby Jason McDonald on Thu Jul 30, 2009 9:28 am

Just to add to the argument.

Thai culture is inherently racist. It is deeply ingrained in both the language and culture to the extent that Thai people are totally unaware that they are being racist and as a consequence do not use the language in an overt racist way.
Thailand also has another problem holding back its rightful development in that the society is too inward looking to Thai culture. Racism is just one effect of this. The others such as history, education, land ownership have been covered in other topics.

But having said that the people are lovely and I get on with them extremely well. Go fishig with the guy next door and our wives cook the fish when we bring them home. He is better at fishing than me so we do get to eat some fish. Just have to accept the good with the very small amount of bad.

If the bad gets bigger than the good I'll go to Vietnam or return to my other home in Australia permanently.
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Re: Is Farang an f word?

Postby Isaannative on Thu Jul 30, 2009 9:51 am

Eggmeng wrote:
Dear Farang,

Dear Chinaman,

Sure, people have all kinds of nicknames in Thailand, and elsewhere too. Some people hate their nicknames and would do anything to get rid of them. But that misses the point, as does the rest of your post, once again. The point is, that when you use a term to lump all people together by their appearance, and you use it constantly to remind them that they are not, and never will be anything but ''others" in your society you are not being brotherly. It''s not the word itself that is objectionable, it's the ways people use it here.

However it's clear you are never going to understand, so I will leave the last word to you if you wish, and other like minded defenders of the f word here.

BTW if you would like to contribute to the fund I am establishing that will help me return to my home country, please send me your email address and I will send you my bank account information. As a matter of fact I am about ready to head back.


Dear Farang,

You are requesting a poor Isaan farmer son to contribute to the fund that you are establishing in order to help you return to your home country. Are you day dreaming? I am sure in your bank account you got more money than my entire family members combine together. There are a lot most poor people in this country that needed helps more than you greedy Farang.

Like an old saying, when in Rome, do what the Romans do. But you are the type that expects other to change to suit your needs & comforts. After 16 years living in this country and you still cannot adapt to this society and accept that we Thai has been using the word Farang to address you white foreigners for 400 years now. And the word Farang as we Thai all knew there isn’t any insulting or racist meaning attach to it. That show you are a narrow minded person and will never change.

I am glad to hear that you are ready to head back but please at your own expense. It is better for you since this is not a place for you anymore. You will feel better, eat better and sleep better in your own hometown as no one will call you Farang anymore. I wish you the best of luck, good health and happily re-locate back to your own hometown. God bless you.

Warmest regards,
Chinaman.
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Re: Is Farang an f word?

Postby AjarnV on Thu Jul 30, 2009 10:35 am

taysahai wrote:Thanks for the correction Ajarn, a little bit too hasty of a post earlier before my coffee.


Thanks, that's been little understood by the farang community. No problem at all. :cheers:

Jason McDonald; thanks for that bit of detail, I'm not there yet (writing Thai). On your second post following; generally I'd agree only adding that Thai's extreme nationalism isn't helpful; but that would also be true of any country. :cheers:

As an aside; I had an American get abusive over this and when I told him my wife (he knew my wife) told me it was a fact; he told me she was wrong. He and I don't drink beer together any more, as I don't take kindly to abusive behavior. :D
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Re: Is Farang an f word?

Postby Jason McDonald on Thu Jul 30, 2009 10:58 am

Issan native,

Sanuk sanuk :-)

Let's not get all serious now Thailand is a great place and the people are fantastic. I have lots of sanuk with my Thai Family and I am pretty sure they have a great time when I'm with them. One of the wives described me to the ma and pa shop lady as farang kee niao which i promptly added not me that's kee niao but you now buy me a chang. Lots of laughter, sanuk sanuk!

Thai people like fun so give them back what they give you but in a fun way. You'll both have fun. Be happy dee jai allaround.

Jason
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Re: Is Farang an f word?

Postby Eggmeng on Thu Jul 30, 2009 11:59 am

I knew this topic would be provocative and I don't feel besieged by the responses. I've wanted to discuss this openly with a group of people for a long long time. I am grateful for the feedback, on both sides of the issue. For what it is worth, had I posted this on the TV forum and not here, I probably would have found a whole lot more support and gotten a whole lot of of lamentable anti Thailand vitriol.

I do not take this issue as seriously as some here seem to think. It's not about an attempt to malign the Thai character or radicalize Thai society, and I don't spend my days obsessing about this. It was meant to provoke a discussion about changing manners in a changing world. Do you think that I did not learn to modify many of the ways I think, speak and act when I moved to Thailand? I consider myself much more Thai than Western in my approach in many situations, and I'm always culture shocked at the way people behave when I visit my home country.

But using the old "This is the way things have been done here for hundreds of years and you should get used to it or leave" admonition, belies the fact that Thailand is part of a globalized world. Societies everywhere are changing - some faster than others - to accomodate their increasingly multi-cultural populations. If Thailand wishes to remain a place only for Thais, keeping all the old ways without regard for how they are seen by the outside world and thier immigrant residents, well then some here are right. There is nothing I can or should try to do about that.

Decades ago people in the West used terms objectionable to large portions of thier immigrant populations, freely. Many of those immigrants at the time told their peers "Don't make waves! To get along we have to go along." But as these populations grew, assimilated, and became educated, they made their voices heard. Little by little, a thing called progress happened. When Barack Obama was elected president of the USA people there rejoiced at how far the country had come. I am by no means equating the situation of blacks in America with that of Westerners in Thailand. My point is just that a long journey began with little steps and an awareness that for societies to progress, people must open their minds and respect all its members.

One of the BP's esteemed columnists writes often about how ethnic minorities are negatively portrayed in the media in Thailand. Will the people here deny that racism is holding Thailand's own people back, and suggest that those who don't like it should either learn to accept the status quo, or keep quiet in their hills, forests, and impoverished villages for another 100 years?

I'm afraid that some of Isaannative comments are really indicative. And I find this ironic, because the people of Isaan have probably suffered from discrimination to a disproportiate extent. When he says "Farang will always be farang" I wonder if he means; "You can come to Thailand as a young man, learn the language, embrace the cuisine, have a Thai family, build a business employing dozens of people, and learn how to respect the Thais in the Thai way. But as far as we are concerned, you will always be an outsider. And if you don't like it, tough luck." He really has stated my case better than anything I could have said.

Another comment IN made is worth noting: (and by the way pi, I was joking about the donations. What happened to your Isaan sense of humor?) You assume I have a large sum in my bank account. This betrays an all too common misconception that all Westerners here are rich, when in fact a great many live day to day just trying to pay the bills and provide for their families, just like Thais. I am one of them. I'm sorry pi, but this mistaken belief is really unhelpful, as it contributes to the jealousy and animosity amongst Thais towards Westerners, that keeps us "others."

And yes, I need some Thai friends. Any volunteers?

Peace on earth
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Re: Is Farang an f word?

Postby williemac on Thu Jul 30, 2009 12:15 pm

farang an f word? no I dont think so I have been going to udonthani since 1997 and hve never been called a farang I have been treated with the most respect from all thais even from the local people in the village where my wife comes from anyway as I am a foreigner it would not bother me in the least if I ever was called a farang.
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Re: Is Farang an f word?

Postby Isaannative on Thu Jul 30, 2009 1:40 pm

Eggmeng wrote:

I'm afraid that some of Isaannative comments are really indicative. And I find this ironic, because the people of Isaan have probably suffered from discrimination to a disproportiate extent. When he says "Farang will always be farang" I wonder if he means; "You can come to Thailand as a young man, learn the language, embrace the cuisine, have a Thai family, build a business employing dozens of people, and learn how to respect the Thais in the Thai way. But as far as we are concerned, you will always be an outsider. And if you don't like it, tough luck." He really has stated my case better than anything I could have said.

Another comment IN made is worth noting: (and by the way pi, I was joking about the donations. What happened to your Isaan sense of humor?) You assume I have a large sum in my bank account. This betrays an all too common misconception that all Westerners here are rich, when in fact a great many live day to day just trying to pay the bills and provide for their families, just like Thais. I am one of them. I'm sorry pi, but this mistaken belief is really unhelpful, as it contributes to the jealousy and animosity amongst Thais towards Westerners, that keeps us "others."

And yes, I need some Thai friends. Any volunteers?

Peace on earth



Dear uncle Eggmeng,

Please do not address me Pi. I feel a bit awkward coz I believe I am only half your age or may be less. Let me address you uncle a more polite way in Asia to address someone who is more senior in age. If in any way my comments posted here offended you, I would like to sincerely apology to you from the bottom of my heart. Please forgive me. I don’t mean to be nasty.

I don’t have the intension to offend you or to be sarcastic. May be it is the way I express in writing as you already knew that my English isn’t that good coz it is not my mother tongue. There is still a long way for me to learn how to write better English and how to express in sentence in a more polite way. I am probably the only few Isaan Natives here in this forum and I had my many reasons to be here and I’ve enjoyed it very much.

Regards,
Chinaman.
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Re: Is Farang an f word?

Postby afarangaranarang on Thu Jul 30, 2009 2:00 pm

get over it! words are just sounds... the point is: it's never what you say, but how you say it. aloha!
Last edited by afarangaranarang on Fri Jul 31, 2009 5:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Is Farang an f word?

Postby Isaannative on Thu Jul 30, 2009 4:04 pm

williemac wrote:
farang an f word? no I dont think so I have been going to udonthani since 1997 and hve never been called a farang I have been treated with the most respect from all thais even from the local people in the village where my wife comes from anyway as I am a foreigner it would not bother me in the least if I ever was called a farang.


Yes, my farang friend. You are the type of outgoing Farang we enjoy having in Isaan and we will respect you the most and like to be friend with. What we call you is not important. How we treat you is more important.
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