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Тотальный перевод
poke a patriot 
5-апр-2009 05:13 pm
rock
Keen observer of Italian realities, Perry Anderson pointed out a few years back:
In diametric contrast [to the fond dicta of foreigners] stands the characteristic tone of native commentary. Most languages have some self-critical locution, usually a wordplay or neologism, to indicate typical national defects. Germans can cite Hegel’s contemptuous description of local identity politics, Deutschdumm; the French deplore the vauntings of franchouillardise; Peruvians term a hopeless mess una peruanada; Brazilians occasionally mock a brasileirice. England seems to have lacked such self-ironic reflexes: ‘Englishry’ – the gift of Tom Nairn, a Scot – is without currency in its land of reference. Italy lies at the opposite pole. In no other nation is the vocabulary of self-derision so multiple and so frequent in use. Italietta for the trifling levity of the country; italico – once favoured by Fascist bombast – now synonymous with vain posturing and underhand cynicism; bitterest of all, italiota as the badge of an invincible cretinism. It is true that these are terms of public parlance, rather than of popular speech. But, as the familiar contempt of the phrase all’ italiana (divorce etc) testifies, the lack of self-esteem they express is widespread. The good opinion of others remains foreign to the Italians themselves.
It appears that England’s lack of terms for national self-deprecation extends both to Russia and the United States. To be sure, neither land comes short in the production of mockery either non-verbal or all too prolix. This week alone, on April Fool’s Day Russia’s performance artists rewarded their incorruptible leader Vladimir Lenin with a gaping hole in his rear, and on the next day an American jury awarded $1 to a professor fired for an essay that characterized the 9/11 attacks against the United States as defensive acts of war. But pithy epithets seem to be in short supply. On the Russian side, one finds alienated cavils concerning “this country” («эта страна») and liberal mockery of “kvass patriotism” («квасной патриотизм»). But the land of the free and the home of the brave is suspiciously bereft of such terms. We fall short of spoofing ourselves, as witness Roy Blount’s lack of traction in disparaging the Supporters of Our Troops as “flaggots” and Team America’s failure to brand its anthem, “America, Fuck Yeah!” While this country still goes without a good five-cent cigar, what it needs is a garland of four-letter words to leaven its embattled self-esteem. Any suggestions?

Update: Russian national self-loathing is well captured by the hypocoristic toponym Рашка and obscurely expressed by Judaeo-Bolshevik epithets руссопят / руссопятство.

Crossposted to [info]larvatus, [info]linguaphiles, and [info]ru_translate.
Comments 
5-апр-2009 08:32 pm
***Any suggestions?

I'd say - Americano as it's widely used reference to something both desirable and loathsome. Besides, it denotes the bastardized coffee that serves as a symbol of uncouthness for all those sophisticates abroad.
Mind you, this is my Cali-skewed opinion.

:)

5-апр-2009 11:46 pm
I was hoping for some counterpart to sovok, less the connotations of social and temporal otherness.
6-апр-2009 12:12 am
I looked up sovok:

...прозвище, даваемое приверженцам советского уклада жизни, коммунистам, вообще людям, демонстрирующим признаки советского менталитета, предрассудков и т. д. Носит негативный характер.

Обыкновенно для «совка» характерны такие качества, как идеологизированность, духовная несвобода и внутренняя несамостоятельность, социально-иждивенческие установки, антидемократизм, нетерпимость к чужому мнению и чужой индивидуальности.

and the closest I could get is hillbilly (or redneck) - the geography is pretty much well-defined and there's at least a partial match in terms of backwardness and other traits.
6-апр-2009 02:46 am - On Ward Churchill
He was not fired for an essay. However, presenting it as if he was makes it a good story, so that is how it is narrated. He is an academic fraud.
6-апр-2009 03:00 am - Re: On Ward Churchill
According to the New York Times, the jurors found that Ward Churchill’s political views had been a “substantial or motivating” factor in his dismissal, and that the university had not shown that he would have been dismissed anyway. Under law, this implies a lack of finding of fraud attributable to him. Being an ass clown is not considered a sufficient ground for terminating tenure.
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