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Deserted

คนขอทาน

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Hello there I had a discussion with someone near where I live. He pointed out some people walking past and got into an argument with them, calling them คนขอทาน. My understanding of that word was that it was neutral and not negative yet when they walked past he described them to me as peasants. I said to him [he is Swedish] that 'peasant' is a very negative word in English and the word he used  คนขอทาน is not but I am not so sure here. So is the word he used rude and does Thai have an equivalent of what he was trying to say. He certainly didn't like the woman and her husband, who did seem rather drunk. I have heard him use the word 'peasant' a few times before but from what I understand คนขอทานis closer to someone in need of money whatever their background maybe. Could someone please clarify here. 

 

Thanks

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from my understanding, it means beggar

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Yes I think so but a peasant is a bit stronger than that and refers to someone's social status rather than what they ask from people on the street. I tried to explain this to him but I do not know what the Thai equivalent of peasant is, if it does exist.  

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Whilst คนขอทาน literally means "someone who asks for alms", it's generally used in a much more specific sense of a beggar who sings for money, a synonym of วนิพก.

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I refer to rural poor folks (the majority of the world's population) as คนบ้านนอก. No Thai has yet corrected me.

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This is still quite a feudal society. A large percentage of the population are basically peasants and there is no real stigma to being called one if you are one I.e just a villager or chao baan. You have to remember it wasn't that long ago Thailand had slavery so given the choice between being a slave or being a peasant then being a peasant sounds like quite a sweet deal. Kon kor taan just means a beggar. To insult someone's social status a Thai person might say kon dtam or a low person.

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So where would 'prai' fit into this? A word I've heard used in a negative way and even some sort of use it in a reclaiming way. 

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From what I have read I think Prai historically might be something like an indentured servant with an owner or lord. Probably closer to a true European peasant. These days it is used as an offensive term for somebody low or contemptible.

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21 minutes ago, Covertjay said:

So where would 'prai' fit into this? A word I've heard used in a negative way and even some sort of use it in a reclaiming way. 

According to the Royal Institute Dictionary, the word is antiquated.  However, it's defined as พลเมือง, ประชาชน, ราษฎรสามัญ - nothing negative there.

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1 hour ago, Jeddah Jo said:

This is still quite a feudal society. A large percentage of the population are basically peasants and there is no real stigma to being called one if you are one I.e just a villager or chao baan. You have to remember it wasn't that long ago Thailand had slavery so given the choice between being a slave or being a peasant then being a peasant sounds like quite a sweet deal. Kon kor taan just means a beggar. To insult someone's social status a Thai person might say kon dtam or a low person.

Thailand cannot be described as feudal for obvious reasons. 

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One example of a negative use of the word 'prai'.

 

ข้าไม่มีลูกสันดานไพร่อย่างเอ็งหรอก

 

Edited by Jeddah Jo

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19 hours ago, Deserted said:

ok thanks, and that is a negative term or neutral term?

My impression is that it is not pejorative. I have not asked anyone to confirm this directly, but no one seems to take offense. (My criterion for a person being a "ban nok" (rustic) is if they live in a village with no 7-Eleven. More to do with where they live rather than who they are.)

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One example of a negative use of the word 'prai'.

 

ข้าไม่มีลูกสันดานไพร่อย่างเอ็งหรอก

 

The perjorative aspect part I think that I see: ลูกสันดานไพร่ = ไพร่ as an adjective is comparable to เลว

I guess that it's in the first person ผม not คนใช้ ?

ไม่มีลูก No I/she do not/does not have a child

Is the rest spoken language, with redundancy which can't be explained?

อย่างเอง = ไม่ใช่อย่างอื่น หรอก = ไม่ใช่คน/สิ่งอื่น

.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Thailand Forum - Thaivisa mobile app

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4 hours ago, tgeezer said:

I guess that it's in the first person ผม not คนใช้ ?

ไม่มีลูก No I/she do not/does not have a child

Is the rest spoken language, with redundancy which can't be explained?

อย่างเอง = ไม่ใช่อย่างอื่น หรอก = ไม่ใช่คน/สิ่งอื่น

 

ข้า and เอ็ง (not เอง) are 1st and 2nd person pronouns, slightly more polite than กู and มึง, but not much...

 

As for บ้านนอก, it's a normal informal word, but it's often used as an insult to look down upon "those stupid isan country bumpkins".

So depending on who says it and in what tone, it can be pejorative.

If you want to play it safe, you can use ต่างจังหวัด

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BANGKOK 23 November 2017 06:45
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