What exactly is "Eskimo"? That word was created to put down Northern Natives and isn't a language in itself, so I'm curious to what language "Alakshak" really is
Hi there Becca, it's part of the Eskimo-Aleut language, also known as Eskaleut, Eskaleutian and Eskaleutic.
Alakshak is the Russian version of the Aleutian word or so sayshttp://www.statesymbolsusa.org/Alaska/name_origin.html
I lived in Alaska for many years, none of my Eskimo friends thought the term was derogatory. In fact I was told it meant something about wearing snowshoes. I have heard that in southern Canada there is a native dialect in which it means "eaters of raw meat." However, in the actual native dialect there isn't anything insulting about the term. To quote a good friend who referred to himself as Eskimo, "why look for insult where none is meant."
I was born and raised in Alaska. I moved to the lower 48 in 1999. My heart is always being pulled to Alaska. One day I'll return for a nice long visit.
My husband is a native Alaskan and has NEVER taken offense at the word Eskimo.
Feel the same way
Silly that someone would be offended by being called Eskimo, unless of course they're not. Some Alaskan Indians might not like that too much (I only say that, as I've traveled for work to both Yupik and Indian villages, and I've accidently offended some...we're different cultures, something I didnt think was offensive). I'm Alaska Native, but I wouldn't refer our tongue as Eskimo in general like that. There are many different languages here and maybe thats what offended someone? Wouldn't offend me, but I've heard others complain before. Just stating my opinion...
I would say its like calling an Mohawk or Navaho just an Indian or Native American. I have never hear anyone being offended by being referred to as an Eskimo unless the person saying was trying to be derogatory. In that case any word used would be been considered derogatory.