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  #41  
Old 08 September 2008, 08:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Mama Duck View Post
What is it suppose to be if not "Eye rack" and "Eye Ran"? Seriously, I don't think I've heard another pronunciation. Of course, it's possible that I can't tell the difference.
I, for one, will not get dragged into that discussion again.
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  #42  
Old 08 September 2008, 08:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Avril View Post
Usually, Ear rack and Ear ran. Though I could swear that during Desert Storm all the news broadcasts were using Eye rather than Ear.

Avril
I don't believe I've ever hear "Ear rack". But like I said, I have a lousy ear for such things. And I'm not sure how you pronouce "i-rock". Tomato, tomato. I'm guessing I'd make a horrible "Eliza Doolittle".
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  #43  
Old 08 September 2008, 08:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Mama Duck View Post
I don't believe I've ever hear "Ear rack". But like I said, I have a lousy ear for such things. And I'm not sure how you pronouce "i-rock". Tomato, tomato. I'm guessing I'd make a horrible "Eliza Doolittle".
Did you see my link? You can actually listen to it.
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  #44  
Old 08 September 2008, 08:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Little Pink Pill View Post
Ear-ON is closer to the way Iranians say it. Here is a sample.

Here's a question for you guys, though. Out of curiosity, does everyone say, "Ear-ON-ians?"
I don't; I say Eye-rain-ee-ans.

I recall hearing that the mispronunciation of "Italian" as "Eye-talian" came about as, or came to be taken as, a slur against Italians, ca. World War II. I have no idea if this is true (possible UL alert!). However, mispronouncing someone's country name when there is a perfectly understandable and pronounceable alternative has always seemed rude to me. Furthermore, it seems to me that I hear mispronunciations of "Iraq" and "Iran" used more often by people who are supportive of US military action in that region than by those who are not. If this is generally the case, and not just an oddity of my own region and exposure, it is an interesting observation.

And Mama Duck, the pronunciation I have heard is closer to "ear rock", but without the elongated "r" sound you get from my example.
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  #45  
Old 08 September 2008, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Little Pink Pill View Post
Did you see my link? You can actually listen to it.
No, sorry, I didn't. I overlooked your entire post. Thanks for the link.
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  #46  
Old 08 September 2008, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Magpye View Post
I don't; I say Eye-rain-ee-ans.

I recall hearing that the mispronunciation of "Italian" as "Eye-talian" came about as, or came to be taken as, a slur against Italians, ca. World War II. I have no idea if this is true (possible UL alert!). However, mispronouncing someone's country name when there is a perfectly understandable and pronounceable alternative has always seemed rude to me.
Wait. You say "Eye-rain-ee-ans." That's wrong, isn't it?

Quote:
Furthermore, it seems to me that I hear mispronunciations of "Iraq" and "Iran" used more often by people who are supportive of US military action in that region than by those who are not. If this is generally the case, and not just an oddity of my own region and exposure, it is an interesting observation.
I have noticed that same thing, by and large, though it isn't universal.
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  #47  
Old 08 September 2008, 08:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Magpye View Post
Furthermore, it seems to me that I hear mispronunciations of "Iraq" and "Iran" used more often by people who are supportive of US military action in that region than by those who are not. If this is generally the case, and not just an oddity of my own region and exposure, it is an interesting observation.
I think it was my observation of this phenomenon to which RangerDog is referring. There was a bit of a hoo-ha when I made the suggestion that it was a political shibboleth. (I can't get there any more, but google for chloe, snopes.com, and eye-raq).

(FWIW, I say IRR-an, and IRR-aynian, though if I thought about it I'd probably say IRR-ahnian.)

Last edited by Chloe; 08 September 2008 at 08:48 PM.
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  #48  
Old 08 September 2008, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Chloe View Post
(FWIW, I say IRR-an, and IRR-anynian, though if I thought about it I'd probably say IRR-ahnian.)
I don't think I could pronounce that if my life depended on it. :o
In my defense, I can't really tell the difference between short "i" and short "e". And then there's anything with "oi" in it.
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  #49  
Old 08 September 2008, 08:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Magpye View Post
....However, mispronouncing someone's country name when there is a perfectly understandable and pronounceable alternative has always seemed rude to me.....
You mean like saying Japan instead of Nipon, or Germany instead of Deutschland or perhaps pronouncing Mexico 'Mex-ee-co' rather than 'Meh-he-co'?

Would you really get offended in someone in Mexico pronounced Estados Unidos slightly different from what you expected?
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  #50  
Old 08 September 2008, 08:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Mama Duck View Post
I don't think I could pronounce that if my life depended on it. :o
Maybe now I've fixed my own spelling... :o
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  #51  
Old 08 September 2008, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Mama Duck View Post
What is it suppose to be if not "Eye rack" and "Eye Ran"? Seriously, I don't think I've heard another pronunciation. Of course, it's possible that I can't tell the difference.
American Heritage New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Iran [(i-ran, i-rahn, eye-ran)]
Iraq [(i-rak, i-rahk)]

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
I`ran
I`rak, I`rahk

The Random House College Dictionary
i ran
i rak

Nuclear examples: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/nuclear
I say new-cle-er
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  #52  
Old 08 September 2008, 10:17 PM
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Originally Posted by AnglRdr View Post
Wait. You say "Eye-rain-ee-ans." That's wrong, isn't it?
Yup, despite my denouncing of people who mispronounce things as rude, my own pronunciation is wrong. Well, habits are habits, and I will cheerfully admit that I don't always live up to my own standards. Upon experimentation, though, I don't always say it that way. I also, and generally, say it more like the way Chloe does: "IRR-aynian". I think that I tend to emphasize the "I [eye]" when I want to be sure that my meaning is clearly understood. Ooh, I just thought of something... in singing we learn to pronounce "the" as "thee" when the next word begins with a vowel, and as "thuh" when the next word begins with a consonant. I think my modulating vowel in "Iranian" may be for similar reasons of aural clarity and ease of pronunciation.

Okay, enough linguistic geekery.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chloe View Post
I think it was my observation of this phenomenon to which RangerDog is referring. There was a bit of a hoo-ha when I made the suggestion that it was a political shibboleth. (I can't get there any more, but google for chloe, snopes.com, and eye-raq).
Ah, pardon me for missing this. Thank you.

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Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
You mean like saying Japan instead of Nipon, or Germany instead of Deutschland or perhaps pronouncing Mexico 'Mex-ee-co' rather than 'Meh-he-co'?
No; I don't mean it like that. In this case I do tend to agree with Chloe that there is some usage of pronunciations as a shibboleth. When there is an accepted alternate name or pronunciation, it is perfectly acceptable to use it, indeed preferable, for the sake of clear communication. Japan and Mexico are both countries which fall into this group.

When, as in the current topic of discussion, there is no clearly accepted standard name or pronunciation, it is polite to use the country's own name for itself, or a reasonable approximation. As neither "Iraq" nor "Iran" are difficult to understand under any of the current (American) pronunciations there is no reason not to approximate local (Iranian or Iraqi) pronunciation as closely as possible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
Would you really get offended in someone in Mexico pronounced Estados Unidos slightly different from what you expected?
No, of course not. I don't get offended when people make good-faith efforts to communicate. The only reason I am bothered by "Eye-rack" and "Eye-ran" as pronunciations is that, by context, they have come across to me as deliberate and belittling mispronunciations of the countries' names. If someone were speaking to me about where to find "Eye-rack" on a map I would take it rather differently than someone telling me how we ought to nuke "Eye-ran". Context, as always, is crucial.
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  #53  
Old 08 September 2008, 11:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
You mean like saying Japan instead of Nipon, or Germany instead of Deutschland or perhaps pronouncing Mexico 'Mex-ee-co' rather than 'Meh-he-co'?

Would you really get offended in someone in Mexico pronounced Estados Unidos slightly different from what you expected?
Slightly different issue: that countries have other names in other languages isn't insulting. It's deliberate mispronunciation -- like "Meskan," "Jap," or "EYE-talian" -- that is really under discussion, and which is being condemned.

Silas
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  #54  
Old 08 September 2008, 11:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Silas Sparkhammer View Post
Slightly different issue: that countries have other names in other languages isn't insulting. It's deliberate mispronunciation -- like "Meskan," "Jap," or "EYE-talian" -- that is really under discussion, and which is being condemned.

Silas
She phrased it in a way that made it seem like she was concerned with what the people from those countries felt about the pronunciation, and frankly I don't think they care as with my example regarding how Estados Unidos may be pronounced.

Quite frankly I don't think the people who pronounce Iraq with a long I are doing it to insult the country any more than people pronouncing Ohio 'Oh-hi-a' are doing it as an insult. It's just the way they've learned to pronounce it through custom.

ETA: Italian with a long I was an insult to Italians, but it was not used when pronouncing the name of their country of origin. I've never heard anyone pronounce Italy 'eye-tal-ee'.
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  #55  
Old 08 September 2008, 11:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
Quite frankly I don't think the people who pronounce Iraq with a long I are doing it to insult the country any more than people pronouncing Ohio 'Oh-hi-a' are doing it as an insult. It's just the way they've learned to pronounce it through custom.
They may have learned it wrong, but continuing to pronounce it incorrectly after learning the proper way is like calling a man "Bill" who prefers to be called "William."
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  #56  
Old 08 September 2008, 11:57 PM
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Originally Posted by AnglRdr View Post
They may have learned it wrong, but continuing to pronounce it incorrectly after learning the proper way is like calling a man "Bill" who prefers to be called "William."
Unless it is an Iranian or Iraqi complaining about it, it is more like calling someone Bill when someone who is not William/Bill would prefer you to call him William.
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  #57  
Old 09 September 2008, 12:43 AM
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Originally Posted by AnglRdr View Post
They may have learned it wrong, but continuing to pronounce it incorrectly after learning the proper way is like calling a man "Bill" who prefers to be called "William."
I wish I could adequately explain to people what it is like to not hear the difference in pronunciations. I can never figure out how people are so certain that words are being "mispronounced" deliberately. How can you possible know that? MamaDuck has already said she doesn't hear a difference. So you can't know if someone is doing it wrong on purpose or just because it doesn't sound any different to them.

Pin - pen is a good example. I didn't even know people said it differently until my college roommate ridiculed me for specifying that I wanted an ink pen. I still can't hear a difference when people say it.

Gibbie
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  #58  
Old 09 September 2008, 12:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
. . . Italian with a long I was an insult to Italians, but it was not used when pronouncing the name of their country of origin. I've never heard anyone pronounce Italy 'eye-tal-ee'.
Possibly so... But I have heard "Mesko" -- although it's not easy to tell if it's insulting or just really really lazy.

And, certainly, some mispronunciations are entirely innocent. I do not know whether the great nation of Chile is "Chilee" or "Chilay." (I *think* it's "Chee-Lay," sort of, but, well...)

However, ignorance is more to be tolerated in a schlub like me than in someone who has aspirations to become the U.S. V.P.

Silas
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  #59  
Old 09 September 2008, 01:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Silas Sparkhammer View Post
Slightly different issue: that countries have other names in other languages isn't insulting. It's deliberate mispronunciation -- like "Meskan," "Jap," or "EYE-talian" -- that is really under discussion, and which is being condemned.
I didn't realize we were talking about deliberate mispronunciations. I thought the original comment in this thread was about political ignorance, not pejorative slang, and AnglRdr and I launched into a classic grammarian vs linguist debate over the English adaptation of foreign words.

It's interesting that several people (myself included) say both "ear-RON" and "eye-RAIN-ian." That suggests to me that "ear-RON" is not natural to most of us, but something we have self-corrected.

Quote:
However, ignorance is more to be tolerated in a schlub like me than in someone who has aspirations to become the U.S. V.P.
If Iranians find it offensive, yes.
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  #60  
Old 09 September 2008, 01:14 AM
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Is there any evidence that people actually use the long I to insult Iraqi's?
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