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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Vic Smith Are racist, but traditional, songs OK? (404* d) RE: Are racist, but traditional, songs OK? 30 May 20


There is also the problem of the meaning of language changing with time. In the lovely song Gathering Rushes the angry father shouts at his unmarried pregnant daughter:-
Oh! Was it by a black man or was it by a brown?
which in current parlance has a racist bent, but in the Edinburgh of my boyhood a black man, a brown man or a fair or blond man referred to the colour of their hair; in fact in 1950s Edinburgh I don't remember seeing any brown or black skinned people. I am sure that is what this implies.
My wife, Tina sings this song and has altered this line to:-
Oh! Was it by a black-haired man or was it by a brown?


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