Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 10:59 am
Def: one who asks for the gift they gave back, often habitually.

What is the historical indian behavior that gave rise to this term? Are there particular stories or particular tribes that this relates to?
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Type: Question • Score: 11 • Views: 3,921 • Replies: 33

 
Ragman
 
  3  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 11:06 am
@hawkeye10,
I might be wrong about the intent of the meaning. I always thought its meaning was the opposite of what you indicated - e.g. white settlers and/or military gave to native tribes and then took back (or militarily forced the issue) taking back what they gave or negotiated for. I didn't think it was the native american behavior the phrase was referring to.

A negotiated treaty would be signed that such and such a territory was given to them and then ... poof ... the treaty was abrogated and that native american territory was either eliminated or reduced drastically.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  2  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 11:08 am
@hawkeye10,
I would try a look at wikipedia for the answer.
Ragman
 
  2  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 11:12 am
@Walter Hinteler,
According to Wiki the etymology of the phrase follows:

"The phrase originated, according to researcher David Wilton, in a cultural misunderstanding that arose when Europeans first encountered Native Americans on arriving in North America in the 15th century. Europeans thought they were receiving gifts from Native Americans, while the Native Americans believed they were engaged in bartering: this resulted in the Europeans finding Native American behaviour ungenerous and insulting."
hawkeye10
 
  -3  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 11:35 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Walter Hinteler wrote:

I would try a look at wikipedia for the answer.

Obviously I went in another direction. I don't trust wiki to be absent PC bias on these kinds of questions.
Ragman
 
  2  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 12:12 pm
@hawkeye10,
Then, in that case...case is closed.
0 Replies
 
NSFW (view)
hawkeye10
 
  -2  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 12:40 pm
@2PacksAday,
I find that hard to believe...when we played cowboys and indians as kids we did not think that the indians were inferior. Your explaination rings of revisionist liberal propaganda.

I am not sure that you are wrong, it just rings false.
2PacksAday
 
  2  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 12:41 pm
@hawkeye10,
Not 1950's Hawk.....think more 1550's
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 12:43 pm
@2PacksAday,
2PacksAday wrote:

Not 1950's Hawk.....think more 1550's

Calling someone an indian giver was routine 1960's-70's, but I don't think many were trying to say what you claim we were.
2PacksAday
 
  1  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 01:00 pm
@hawkeye10,
I knew a few Indian givers back in the heyday of disco.

How about....wow did you see the rack on that chick....yeah but they are Indian jugs man.....aw.

What Ragman posted would seem to me to be Liberal revisionist propaganda, not calling an entire race liars or fakers, as they were percieved to be at the time...much like "Jews" are considered, well you know Jewish.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  2  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 01:00 pm
@hawkeye10,
hawkeye10 wrote:
I don't trust wiki to be absent PC bias on these kinds of questions.
Well, since David Wilton's only got the good reviews for his work/book from scientists in historical linguistics and etymology, you're certainly correct to oppose such a bias research.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 08:09 pm
@2PacksAday,
I almost remember that. Not about playing myself, I was a girl in the 40's and had dolls - but a scent of all that from the tv programs that started around then.
But don't trust me on those scripts.
roger
 
  2  
Reply Sat 1 Dec, 2012 10:35 pm
@Ragman,
Oh. My guess would have involved supposed violations on the part of some tribes. White man came in with a concept of government that involved one leader able to deal in the name of the leader's country. So far as the plains Indians went, this was an unknown concept. One leader, who we took as an authorized treaty signer was never able to deal in the name of the tribe.

False etomology has always been fun.
0 Replies
 
2PacksAday
 
  1  
Reply Sun 2 Dec, 2012 12:14 am
@ossobuco,
I don't think I ever used the term myself, but I heard it enough as a kid in the 70's. I seem to remember saying that to my wife a few times, but I say goofy stuff to her {or the kids} that I would never say to anyone else....I really don't speak that way. I have never, ever uttered the phrase, it's raining cats and dogs.....I've never called anyone a square either.

I have used Indian Summer on many occasions, but probably no more than I have said...false summer, as this type of weather is very common in my part of the country.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sun 2 Dec, 2012 12:39 am
And now you're making me realize the connotation of that.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Sun 2 Dec, 2012 12:56 am
@2PacksAday,
Ya know, that reminded me of a notice of a mandatory employee meeting I saw this very day. The square thing, I mean.

"Be there on time, or be square".

Trust me, that place is becoming famous for being almost, but not quite ready for prime time.
0 Replies
 
Foofie
 
  1  
Reply Sun 2 Dec, 2012 06:53 am
I believe that the colloquial use of the term "Indian giver" was based on the pejorative negative stereotype that an Indian might want something back, after it was given. It was acceptable to use this in the 1950's, or thereabouts. Then it became a politically incorrect term, since it negatively stereotyped Native Americans.

Perhaps, we also have to stop using the colloquial term "buffaloed," as in "don't let that person 'buffalo' you (stampede you into acquiesence).

To be politically correct, the Lone Ranger's Native American sidekick, "Tonto" ("foolish" in Spanish) might have to have a name change to something like "inteligente."
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 2 Dec, 2012 12:34 pm
i am disappointed that the brain trust at a2k has not expanded on the conventional answer, which is that the term originated with a miss understanding between indians and the europeans over the rules of gift giving.

all indians? some indians? how common was it for white men to accept gifts from the indians but not reciprocate with an equally valued gift leaving the indians feeling cheated and wanting to call off the deal? were gifts usually actually exchanged in good faith but this was at root a dispute over value....that is to say did the indians also return a gift before asking for the return of theirs?
JPB
 
  3  
Reply Sun 2 Dec, 2012 12:42 pm
@hawkeye10,
Your questions are difficult to answer when history (often a revisionist history) is written by the victors. You'd have to find a source for Indian lore as told through the generations to even begin to answer those questions.
 

 
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