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From "Acadien" to "Cajun" to "Cadien": Ethnic Labelization and Construction of Identity Author(s): Jacques Henry Reviewed work(s): Source:

Journal of American Ethnic History, Vol. 17, No. 4 (Summer, 1998), pp. 29-62 Published by: University of Illinois Press on behalf of the Immigration & Ethnic History Society Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/27502336 . Accessed: 16/01/2013 20:22
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From Acadien to Cajun to Cadieni


Ethnic Labelization and of Identity Construction
JACQUES HENRY

OBSERVATION OF everyday life in Southwest Louisiana clearly at


French is ethnic phenomenon: on signs and in publications, in-group spoken, Cajun identity in kin groups and organizations, is practiced is Cajun music solidarity ethnic food is cooked and sold, and Cajun country is toured by played, to the question remains the answer "What is a Cajun?" visitors. Yet, is claimed elusive. Cajuns, morists; sus. On Operational and anecdotal definitions abound from individual scholars, legislators is of yet this profusion the one hand, views of Cajun ethnicity by Cajuns vary accord ing to situational and referential contexts;1 on the other hand, definitions theoretical perspectives have been attempted from different by histori and writers of all kinds, from poets to hu a clear consen little help in providing tests to the existence of a French-based

ans, geographers, sociologists, linguists, and folklorists anthropologists, a as providing an official with goals as diverse definition, delineating informants or analyzing Cajun ethnic identity. All defi territory, finding nitions focus on or refer to Acadian ancestry, French language, ecologi to Southwestern Catholicism, Louisiana, agri adaptation of Cajun and a particular folk culture as the main variables culturalism, because of inadequacies ethnicity. Yet, these efforts are deemed wanting cal and cultural to the approach,2 the fast-evolving, and some multi-dimensional nature of the phenomenon at hand3 or the larger theo times paradoxical in tackling the issue of ethnicity per se.4 retical difficulties inherent This article the written the Acadian attempts occurrences exiles The It consists another approach. of the labels used to describe of an analysis the descendants of of

Cajun/cadien.5 use, and meaning cadien

in Louisiana, and especially ethno-historical exploration reveal the dialectical process

the English-French pair of the label's creation, at play in the construc

of the early realization This analysis confirms tion of Cajun ethnicity. in Louisiana Acadian and the coining of Cajun by outsid speech ers who popularized it presents the word in the late nineteenth century;

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Journal of American

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in patterns of utilization of Cajun/cadien from its emer as a derogative term used by outsiders to its current positive but gence in English realizations and French. The analysis of the evolu divergent the variations social contexts and from in-group and out-group changing shows that the use and meaning of Cajun/cadien closely perspectives cul social and cultural changes. Stable symbol of a changing espouses ture or constant marker of shifting ethnic boundaries, ap Cajun/cadien tion through evolution pears through historical of Cajun ethnicity. construction as a reliable indicator of the ongoing

DATA AND METHODOLOGY


The data consist of acadien region on of written occurrences a derivative of Cajun/cadien, a to the people and culture of Acadie, now used coast. Cajun/cadien to is to descend of people assumed in Louisiana after their deportation the defini here is "assumed" because

refers [akadi?] which the Canadian Atlantic

the group, language designate exiles who from the Acadian from Canada

and culture settled

in 1755. A key word is still a knot of confusion tion of Cajun/cadien despite a long presence in Louisiana and a surge of commercial interest in the past and scholarly two decades. One issue is unanimously have agreed upon: there would and there would siana between Cajun be no Cajuns if Acadians had not settled a matter of debate. 1765 and 1785. The rest is form of the American used in Loui

been

of English pronunciation as well and non-Cajuns [kedzAn]; [kedz^n] universally by Cajuns as by English In conformity and French with English mor speakers. it is the only form of the adjective and the singular noun, and it phology, is both masculine Cadien and and feminine. forms of the Louisiana French cadjin are the written of [kadzej. [kadze] used exclusively French speakers, pronunciation by The feminine form of both by Cajuns but also by non-Cajuns. mostly terms is respectively cadienne and cadjine [kadien] [kadzin]. The plural of both the noun and adjective, masculine is marked with and feminine, the s ending, which is not realized in speech. The original oral realization of the term will eternal remain shrouded by the

is the written

silence of its long-gone unrecorded oral usage speakers. Modern The ranges from [ka:dz?] to [kadie] in French and [kedzAn] in English. sources historical evolution be reconstructed from written can, however, that provide diachronic and codified information. The data presented here does not claim to be exhaustive, especially

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Henry

31

for the early and rare occurrences of the words and the current massive use. Compilations of manuscripts documents, (administrative personal were the source of some eighteenth-century occurrences.6 correspondence) Nineteenthaccounts and early-twentieth-century the Louisiana of contacts with have These been material Acadian come from published and terri population

tory; these descriptions

has been collected through observation in books, articles, dictionaries, administrative documents, participation form. Table 3 presents the use of ethnic signs, and lately, in electronic area (1905-1995). in telephone directories code words of the Lafayette There written worthy are methodological ethnic label. The topics to the ethnohistory of a pertinent use and meaning of a name are evolution, of inquiry. Anthropologists and sociolinguists have stud questions

liographical essays.7 ars, travelers, journalists, 1 and 2. Modern material

in several bib and analyzed from administrators, schol reports originate are presented and fiction writers, in Tables and collated

ied ethnic labels to identify and delimit ethnic groups;8 as for the ethnic
in Louisiana, the much-confusing situation label Creole/cr?ole has been has not received the the subject of several studies,9 but Cajun/cadien same amount of scrutiny. writ Another issue deals with the use of written data. In Louisiana, as a measurement of ings in French and Creole have long been provided French and Creole cultures: their disap the cultural vitality of Louisiana the demise of French among elites, and the literary pearance signaled renaissance of Cajun first-hand social of the 1970s ethnicity.10 information is hailed as a manifestation of the written by writers, The analysis provided of the resurgence symbols, along with the a unique access to

open

facts and processes. It is acknowledged that both Cajun and cadien were spoken before were on paper and that their use was wider recorded than the they by a handful of texts. The ques to the correspondence tions pertaining and between oral realization will be addressed; in fact, they are at the core of graphic representation this "ethnography of writing." of a largely illiterate the validity of the written Finally, portrayal limited view of their existence allowed group by erudite outsiders must be assessed. Accounts of the use of Cajun/cadien from non-Acadian large originate In contrast, Cajun authors' publications, noticeably pejorative. especially are recent, rare and reflective in French, ethnic pride. of a renewed Since the task at hand is the analysis of an ethnic label, not the descrip tion of Cajun history and culture, the patterns of name usage by insiders sources and are by and

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and outsiders

tion of biases boundary

are significant and can be interpreted through the distor on the and stereotypes. Ethnic label use is positioned that separates the Ethnics from the Others; its historical-ethno

graphic study allows for the integration of the etic and emic perspectives in a multicultural and synchrony. and biracial setting, in diachrony

THE CREATION OF THE TERM


of Cajun/cadien is undisputed; there are Cajuns in settled there after their deportation from Acadians in 1755. The etymology Acadie is not as clear. o?Acadie by the British in Historians award the coining of the term to Giovanni Verrazano; The Louisiana etymology because 1524, the Florentine navigator Coast Archadia Atlantic "for a rural region Arcadia, 1548 and dise. Between Nova Scotia Larcadia, called the beauty of ancient Greece the upper part of the American to of its trees" in reference

1575, maps or Arcadia. Larcadie

regarded as a pastoral para to named the area corresponding Samuel de Champlain, the

founder of French Canada, used both Arcadie (1603)mdAccadie (1613). In 1603, the French king Henri IV opened the region of la Cadie to
settlers. I'Acadie" A tives." resided second that "Cadie A group of French in 1604, providing merchants a "Compagnie incorporated record of the term.11 the first written a different of source. Poirier de

interpretation proposes name is the primitive from originate the North Atlantic a camp, term quoddy,

submitted

It would

the territory taken from the na terms used by the Algonquin tribes who

along the Micmac algatig,

or the Malecite

be a variation of coast; Acadie would as found today in Tracadie, Subenacadie, a fertile place, as found in Passamaquoddy, the early variations in spelling and the con any definite

Chappaquiddick.12 The scarcity of written lack of recorded clusion

records,

seventeenth-century speech hamper on the origin of the term and its early oral realization and use. Acadian/acadien the eighteenth Nevertheless, century, throughout unequivocably and fishermen glish and the Catholic designated settled around the Baie descendants Fran?aise. of French Descendants ceded farmers of En Acadie

England The grand

settlers who arrived after France Scottish in 1713 were not labeled Acadians.

to

the which followed (the great displacement) derangement of approximately resulted in the settlement 5,000 Acadians deportation InMay of labeled Acadians/acadiens. in Louisiana. The refugees were 1765, Charles Aubry, military commander of New Orleans, noted:

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Lorsque j'ai rendu compte de de l'arriv?e d'une soixantaine familles acadiennes venues de Saint Domingue, je ne croyais pas qu'elles seraient suivies de beaucoup d'autres qui arrivent et que la Loui continuellement siane allait bient?t devenir une nouvelle Acadie. were

I reported the arrival of sixty Acadian families from Saint I did not think they Domingue, When would
ers who

be followed
are

by many oth
continu

arriving

ously
soon

and

that Louisiana
a new

was

to become

Acadia.13

Their indicate

descendants official

long

correspondence term was scant evidence in use, and that the abbreviated is, however, in French. In a 1771 letter, a available data suggest an early origination that complained priest in Louisiana II y a pr?s d'un mois que vers les onze heures du matain quatre Cadiens scavoir entr?rent ches moy les nomm?es Richard p?re, Poyri, Bergeron, dit Andre, sous pretexte d'allumer leur pype. the writer was Not much can be deduced from this unique occurrence; a dislike of not an Acadian, the tone of the letter conveys and although cannot be concluded it that the abbrevi of said Cadiens, the behavior Historians have also used as a derogative. ated term was universally recorded settlements the use of this abbreviated in Qu?bec; Poirier form; it mostly that Acadians claimed applied called to Acadian themselves About a month ago at around in the morning eleven four the elder Richard, Poy Cajuns,
rie, Bergeron said Andre, came

so to as Acadians/acadiens\ 1 and 2). There and authors (see Tables referred

to my house under the pretext light their pipe.14

to

or more simply French.15 It can be assumed Cadgiens of Acadien was used in speech; it is unclear, however, or outsiders and what meaning it carried. by Acadians More Louisiana.

that a derivative how it was used

in print in than a century would elapse before cadien appeared in her Itwas used in 1888 by novelist Sidonie de la Houssaye et Balthazar. Fortier had a corre Creole scholar Alc?e novel Pouponne is the only early Cadien spondent use it too in an 1894 publication.16 French posed: derivative Cayens, of Acadien', cajin, agree Cadgiens, to award later other Cajen, abbreviations Cadjein, have been Cadjun, Cadjien, pro and

cadjin.17 sources Most

the coining

of Cajun

to Putnam's

Maga

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TABLE 1
French Name Used for Descendants of Acadian (Eighteenth & Nineteenth Centuries)
No Mention Creole

Exiles

Acadien

Cadien

Aubry (1765) inArcenault (1965) Conseil Sup?rieur (1768) inHistorical Records (1940) Valentin (1771) inArchivo General de Indias

X
acadien

Champigny(1773)
Bossu (1777) Favrot (1779) inHistorical Survey (1941) Raynal(1780) Baudry des Lauzi?res (1802) Berquin Duvalon (1802) PerrinduLac(1805) Chateaubriand (1827) in (1929) X

X X X

X
X X X

Robin (1807)

Tixier(1844)* Barde (1861) Delahoussaye(1888) Sauvalle(1891) Fortier (1894:190-6) Anonyme (1901) inDitchy Voorhies (1907)
Note: * The author used

X X X X X

(1932)
term once in "Quand nous

X X arriv?mes aux

Acadiens..."

(p.28) referring to the Acadian Coast on theMississippi. Victor Tixier, Voyage aux Prairies Osages Louisiane etMissouri, 1839-40 (Clermont-Ferrand, 1866).

one of many variations In 1873, a planter wrote of Cagians; is writers gave to Acadian. Cajen in 1873, Cadian in 1876.19 Even though Cajun would become recorded the standard English later proposed by writ spelling, other forms were ers: Cajan, and Cajin;20 Kajun is also currently used by fCadian, Cajian local businesses. zine contributor R.L. Daniels in 1879.18 to the parallel variations of both French and English spell term in Loui of the abbreviated other clues point to an origination ings, a siana Acadian indicated that they were speech. Authors transcribing term used in speech; Daniels wrote: "Acadian?or rather its corruption In addition it;"21 "Presently 'Cajun' as they pronounce nowhere spoken of in their own country wrote: noted Ralph.22 De la Houssaye we saw our first Acadians? than as 'Cajuns," otherwise

It was

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TABLE 2
English Names Used for Descendants of Acadian (Eighteenth & Nineteenth Centuries)
Authors No Name French Creole

Exiles

Acadian

Cajun

Gordon (1766) inMereness Pittman (1770:24) Hutchins (1784:41,47)

(1912:482)

X
Acadians X X

Pitot (1802) in 1979

Stoddard (1812:177-85,319-30) X Brackenridge(1814) Cramer (1814:130)

Darby (1816:146,190)

Cathcart (1819) in Prentiss (1855:95-7) Flint (1826:329-38,1835:15) Prentiss (1829) in Prentiss (1855:95-7) Sealsfield (1842) inMcMillan (1943:119)

X X X X X X
X X

X X

Longfellow (1847) Lyell (1849:93-4,104) Olmstead (1856:342) Dorr (1860) in Prichard (1938) Waud (1866:670) Noyes (1868:54) Lockett (1873:51) Rhodes (1873:254) De Leon (1875:361)

Acajan X X X X

Dennett (1865) in (1965:324) X X


X

X X
X X X X

Cagians Cajens

King (1875:85) Nordhoff(1876:73)


Daniels (1879) Sparks (1882:372-89)

Davis (1887:917-8) Warner (1887:335,350,353) Cable (1888) in (1901:74,260-1) Harris in Poole (1889:26) Perrin (1891:103-4) Ralph (1893:874, 883) Chopin (1969 [1894-1990]

Cable (1884) in (1886:308)

Cr?oles fran?aisX X X X X X X X X

Cadians X Cadians Cajans X X Cajan X


'Cadian X

(1894) in (1969:320-1)
... ils nomm?rent

ce

coin

de

terre qu'ils venaient d'adopter la Petite Cadie, du nom de la patrie


perdue l'esclave, ennes du . . . "Ma?tre," une r?pondit des Cadi "c'est

They named the piece of land they had just adopted the small Cadie, the name of the lost moth "
erland .. . "Master, "22 the slave

said,
from

"it's one of the Cadiennes


the camp.

campement."

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or French, authors resorted to differ in English to transcribe the word; Noyes used italics, typographical to quotation marks;24 an anonymous others resorted 1901 glossary indi In addition, whether ent devices cated the proper French pronunciation in "cadien (pron. Cadjen)."25 an analysis Furthermore of the spelling reveals that the dropping of in both French and English. the initial a is unanimously noted This

that the spelling correctly represented supports the assumption the abbreviated of Acadian/acadien. the contin However, pronunciation and the recent creation of Acadiana ued use of Acadian/acadien indicate

consensus

that the aphesis (suppression of an initial sound) is not uniquely the


there were non-linguistic factors at linguistic pressure; of Cajun/cadien. The introduction of play in the coining and the writing the letters/ or g accurately shift in both Acadian the oft-noted symbolizes result of internal

and Cajun French from [d] to [dz]when followed by an open vowel [i]. Such a shift is found inDieu [dioe] pronounced [dzoe], diable [diabl]
[dzab]. French spelling has no codified pronounced symbol to represent the sound [dz] which is not a French consonant; French writers used two

methods to indicate the shift: the use of j or g in conjunction with the


letter d as cadien. in cadjin, cadgein, and an indication on how The maintenance of the conventional orthography to pronounce is most likely French with

due to the etymological pressure of Acadian/acadien. It is easier to represent the phonetic shift in Acadian j and g; English writers

English spelling: [z] is an English consonant represented by the symbols


Cajen, Cajin, Cagians. in the 1890s give acajin and canajin.26 The various Acadian housewife reflect the diffi -ian, -an, -un, -en, -in used by English writers endings to represent in French frequent culty the sound and was [e] which does not exist noted with in English. the -ien ending; used j or g to coin Cajun, Cajan, uniformly So did some Canadian Acadians: letters by an

It is

later, originally in -in, -en and -ein were introduced. endings In conclusion, shows that the abbreviated evidence form of Acadian/ acadien was used in Louisiana Acadian and that outsiders coined speech written after forms the arrival to be in both of Acadian one century and English approximately The coining of Cajun/cadien thus than a mere event such as a phonetic linguistic French exiles.

appears

larger its significance lies in the interaction between social groups transcription; in nineteenth-century It is to be sought in the use and mean Louisiana. ing of the term.

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EARLY USAGE AND NEGATIVE ASCRIPTION


1 and 2 map the use of names in French and English accounts to designate the eighteenth and nineteenth the descendants century were not a exiles in Louisiana. Table 1 shows that Acadians of Acadian Tables from topic of great Chateaubriand interest and Sauvalle for French writers; Bossu, Baudry do not mention the Acadians des Lauzieres, despite travel

the natural envi ing in the area and showing keen interest in describing as Native Ameri ronment and local population, the sauvages, especially are mentioned, cans were called.27 When Acadians mostly by Louisi are referred to as acadien and in a couple of ana-based writers, they instances reserved ascendance. cadien Table Acadians. abbreviated as cr?ole; never are the Acadians or for those citizens for French a term labeled fran?ais, French direct claiming the century, limited use of the

toward the end of Then, or recorded by outsiders; term is made in these instances, or a term indicating rurality, lack is clearly used as a derogative and low social status. 2 shows Name a greater interest usage also reveals

of education

spective adopted by these writers. used Acadians. Then, after the Louisiana Acadians were times unclear French-born "character

of Anglo-American writers in the differences in the per significant In colonial Louisiana, authors only Purchase and until the 1880s, It is some

and French. referred to as Acadians, Creoles if the authors wrote French Canadians, about Acadians, or native Creoles. account of the For instance, Stoddard's did not mention French or French

Creoles, "Creoles

Acadians but French, it differentiated between Creoles; and "those along Red River and the Delta," of Upper-Louisiana" of French Canadians, and those Creoles who are "partly the descendants of the Louisianians" Creole and partly under some of the first governors of of those who migrated on the western mentions of settlements side of the Missis

Louisiana"; sippi, of "mixing" as with

with "Spaniards, German and other strangers" as well and of "peculiar customs wholly derived from the Aborig?nes, ancestors" that the Acadians their Canadian may have been suggest included in the description.28 by Flint and Prentiss Similarly, memoirs even if their mentions no references of the French of Acadians

contain

are likely to include the Acadians. in these early accounts, Nevertheless, the Acadians did not appear as a discrete group.29 was unique to the to refer to the Acadians The use of French as shown, could be problematic. There and, Anglo-American perspective over the use of Creole. This confusion was due to was more confusion

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and the inconsistent use that writers made of it. The the term's polysemy in Louisiana of Creole result from historical evolution various meanings of clear-cut boundaries between the various groups it and the absence the meaning labeled; from the original sense of "native to the colonies," was to refer to cultural differences later expanded (Creole versus Ameri the term white or both); furthermore, and racial distinctions (black, can)

had both ethnic and linguistic dimensions that did?and


coincide: for Predictably, users. Anglo-American instance, its use varied a Creole does

still do?not

greatly in combina writers used Creole systematically tion with other labels; the overlap is apparent in this notation by Frederick a hamlet of cottages, "We were passing L. Olmsted: by the occupied or what the planters call habitans, French Cre Acadians, poor white
oles."31

not necessarily speak Creole.30 to the social location of according

Then, by the end of the nineteenth century, writers no longer associ Creole with Creole; the literary accounts of Louisiana ated the Acadians W. Cable make the distinction clear: for him, quite society by George Creoles were were the white elite of European Since Acadians descent.32 as belonging to the ruling class, English names used not perceived forms. and its abbreviated to characterize them were limited to Acadian

no longer French in French, the Acadians, In parallel with the evolution or Cajuns. or Creoles, were exclusively labeled Acadians the distinctive both terms were by no means However, synonyms; as a ness of Cajun/cadien is clearly marked ; it is presented semantically corrupted term to be used with precaution because it is an insult:

The name Acadians, by which they were first known, was soon con tracted or corrupted into the term "Cajan," by which they are frequently known. For some reason unknown to us, these people object to the name Cajan. There is certainly no disgrace in being a descendant of an innocent people who were driven from their homes in Acadia and settled in this country; and we can see no reason for being ashamed of the name or its contracted form, Cajan.33 Nearly all the white folks who trudged along the highways were Acadians, all but hallowed by themagic of Longfellow, and it was strange indeed to hear that we not call them Cajuns to their faces lest they be offended, that the term is taken as one of reproach.34 The definition same meaning is assumed was ascribed to the French this derivative; an Acadian scholar: by 1901

to have been written

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. . ] Ce nom est donn? dans le sens quelquefois d'ironie mais le plus souvent de m?pris. Il ne semble pas du tout car on l'abr?g? de Acadien; CADIEN [. l'applique indistinctement ? tout cr?ole, que soit son quelle sent la campagne et origine, qui qui a l'air d'un paysan. C'est un Cadien!

. [. .] This name is sometimes used ironically but most often conveys disdain. It does not at all appear to be the it abbreviated form of Acadian; is applied indiscriminately to any CAJUN Creole who, whatever its origin, smells like the country and looks like a peasant. That's a Cajun!35

are not either necessar Cajuns/cadiens from their Frenchness, denied the Cre Separated ole label, Cajuns were being pulled away from their Acadian ancestry; are a group symbolically the turn of the century, Cajuns/cadiens by If in English Their distinctiveness is greater than in French. discrete. longer French Acadians/acadiens. ily No the graphic mark of the Acadian origin, the spelling of the pattern employed it at all; in fact, it follows Cajun does not convey to convey scorn and to coin Injun, the spelling used by American writers as a breed Indians. Indeed, Cajuns are constructed disdain of American cadien retains
apart.

or Creole,

The social posed

in the of Cajuns reflected their new position Recent of postbellum Louisiana. has ex scholarship in the stratification of nineteenth the mechanism that resulted symbolic structure distinction

have identified several factors that century Acadian society. Historians into differ led to the breakup of a culturally homogeneous community as diverse as lev?e lands, ent classes: in natural environments settlement the adoption of slavery and the swamps, prairie and coastline marshes; and third-generation Acadians; system by secondunequal plantation or access to land and capital; Creoles with higher-class intermarriage failure endogamy; tional opportunities Anglo-American of the state and the Catholic church in French; of the Acadian cooptation system; and refusal by Cajuns to "make to provide elite educa by the

the necessary to Anglo-American and concessions ways."36 The devas compromises on by the Civil War and the crises of Reconstruction tation brought Brasseaux noted: resulted in a greater polarization. constituted a highly stratified and Before the Civil War, the Acadians diversified socioeconomic group. The community contained planters, pros
perous small slaveholding farmers, ranchers, urban professionals, rural

artisans, independent yeomen,

and landless day laborers. In the postbellum

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period, however, Acadian agriculturalists divided into two basic groups: a class that was largely co-opted by the small upper and upper-middle dominant's Anglo-American culture, and the impoverished, poorly region's but culturally steadfast masses.37 educated, The Acadian class became exclusion upper-class remained Acadian/acadienne, to Dormon, According between and the lower the process of and

Cajun/cadienne. in the distinction that resulted

was achieved by 'Genteel Acadian"' Lordly to Cajun" that the transition from "Acadian Objective bels. The differences in social class were use and ascribed

"lowly 'Cajun' estimates 1865; Brasseaux was completed by 1877. la different symbolized by

with

concur of Cajun/cadien systematic meaning the timeline and analysis proposed by historians. The use of both terms by nineteenth-century writers is exemplary. Davis drew a distinction the good "Acadian" and the "wretched between Cajans." Cajun Acadian is associated is used when with positive qualities condemnable behaviors: are mentioned, and

"I am Acadian myself on my mother's side. Oh I know my people!" "I heard much of them atNew Orleans." "Then," hastily, "I am glad to have met you to correct your false impres sions of the lazy, wretched 'Cajans'!" "They do not seem to be a progressive people," ventured Mr. Ely. "No, perhaps not. But is progress everything? They are not lazy. The men It is true that they are sepa work faithfully?when they work at all.... rate from the world [... ] The Acadian wife A and children."38 similar use is made of the terms Cable as Acadian and in his novelists; by Louisiana to Acadian referred exclusively and reserved a laborer whose the use of Cajun are discourses in that they have no schools, no books, no newspapers is a moral, sober, honorable man. He is fond of his

Acadian

characters, in phonetic vernacular. In her writings, Chopin used mostly 'Cadian but had a black servant use Cajun to describe "a gentleman of the Bayou T?che."39 noted This pattern until

people, to low-class

trilogy, Bonaventure, history and language

a black

the usage of both terms in French and English organized Little oral and written data were found on the use of recently. so labeled at the turn and first decades cadien by the people of the twentieth indications. some written evidence by outsiders provides century. However, The use of cadien during this period was very limited. One

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that French-language print had all but disappeared, insuring of English; besides historical works, the supremacy there are a handful of travel accounts by French and Canadian scholars in which Louisiana are referred to as acadiens.40 on a trip to Louisi In his memoir Acadians ana, Robert made Un a rare mention of cadien: the driver if he speaks he responds: No I speak Cajun. And as the conversation goes on, he suddenly realizes that after all there is but one French grammar and one French dic
tionary.41

reason was

chauffeur d'auto ? qui je demande s'il parle le fran?ais Non, je parle le cadien. repond: se Et comme la conversation continue, il se rend compte tout ? coup qu'apr?s tout, il n'y a
qu'une grammaire fran?aise et un

/ ask

French;

dictionnaire

fran?ais.

term was

At the turn of the century, the The use of Cajun is better documented. or is avoided. Until the 1960s there either used as a derogative

or Acadiana are no newspapers, businesses literary publications, using use Cajun/cadien; their writings refer to Acadian/ it.42 Scholars did not and French. When Louisiana French Acadien, French-speaking, Cajun was used, it was accompanied with typographical and semantical preci
sions.43

In 1925, a record whereas local terms Cajan or French Acadian;44 Cajun dialect and simple included French, Acadian were mindedness such as Walter by humorists portrayed Coquille, different. Pom Pom. Among of fictitious writers, mayor Bayou caricaturesque Ava Jack Carver penned The 'Cajun in 1926?a dark affair playwright 45 and a National and broken hearts? of cousin marriage Geographic contributor sion among The rubbed "elbows with the famous Parish: 'Cajuns'" during his incur the trappers of Terrebonne

The use of Cajun by outsiders was notably labeled Louisiana French folk music company

language of the Cajun is a French patois, but occasionally he makes forays into the English tongue, and weird and fantastic are the results. Although a vast deal of fun is had at the expense of the Cajun, chiefly on account of his linguistic lapses, Louisiana has leaned heavily upon his stalwart shoulders and he endures the hardships of the trapper's life with admirable bonhomie.46 Accompanied photographs with of Cajuns transcriptions and fishing in vernacular logging, and Cajun English to contributed these works

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42 Journal of American

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build the image of the rural, illiterate Cajun living on the edge of civili
zation; this excerpt of Cajun: by Daniels helped publicize the negative connotation

Terreborme is another land in the same state. It lies across the instep of the boot of Louisiana from Feliciana. But this parish of the Good Earth has by no means been a land of riches. Sometimes even itmust seem to its Cajun fur trappers, oysters tonguers, shrimp seiners and fishermen that le bon Dieu had forgotten them. And devout, even superstitious as they have remained,
services

they have
of priests....

in some cases of poverty


But such Cajuns, of

had to forego
course, [...

the
] are

expensive

not typical. But they are there and they have been desperately poor. But its fish and its fur as well as its fertility made it ripe for opening before Huey ran in his roads to take Cajun votes and produce out as well as carry
new wealth in.47

are the explanations of the term and the typographical hints; are a group in their own right, disconnected from symbolically, Cajuns are lauded and studied, Cajuns their Acadian While Acadians heritage. are derided and stereotyped. to Even attempts by fair-minded scholars Gone "clear up a maze of misunderstandings about the Cajuns" ended up reinforcing The the clich?:

term Creole has always been synonymous with excellence.... And was a fighting word. Here an old Negro mammy did not say "poor Cajun the old white trash." She said "Cajun"?or "blue bellied Cajun." When some ignoramus in their midst with whom Creoles wished to designate [. .. ] umaudit they tacked on an adjective they were exasperated,
Cajin." ... As another educator, a man from La C?te des Acadiens, laugh

ingly puts it, "Me, I am a Creole; In her assessment acknowledged become that

the other fellow, he is a Cajun."48

some

in literature, Pecot of Cajuns of the representation to of the Acadians have risen descendants

But citizens the state has produced.... distinguished some features particular to their [such] personalities, although retaining countrymen, have, in the larger sense, succumbed to the dominating influ ences of American culture and have become hybrid by-products.... Not so the typical 'Cajun, who has been neither amalgamated nor assimilated by the Americans, but is today the same sturdy Breton peasant who fished and trapped and farmed over two hundred years ago in the environs of
Nova Scotia.49

some of the most

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43

a century after its emergence in writing, By the 1950s, approximately a clear pattern: the English the usage of Cajun/cadien followed orthog the dominating it was used norm, it had eclipsed Acadian, raphy was or stereotypically it was avoided or used care derisively by outsiders,

fully by insiders. TOWARD POSITIVE ASCRIPTION


However, signs of evolution were appearing. On the one hand, the re term was applied to groups outside Louisiana. Publications English of Cajan communities in Alabama, Mississippi vealed the existence and and poverty: Texas, and accounts focused on miscegenation Mobile and Clarke Counties Cajans in the hilly areas of Washington, are a poor hill [Alabama] as well as adjoining parts of Mississippi... people of the wooded country who subsist by lumbering, turpentine ex traction, and various odd jobs.... Cajans are a mixture of white, Indian and Negro types.50

the distinctiveness with Louisiana Cajuns was noted, the com Though mon French heritage and similarity of the names leave "little doubt that at least some of their ancestors included members of the original mi grants from Acadia or other early French settlers."51 terms applied to Cajuns appeared the other hand, two derogative its rather in the late 1940s: coonass and bougalie. Despite presumably coonass the etymology of clear denotation remains (a racoon's behind), On a matter word of debate. Some conasse, a feminine from the French argued that the term originated or a person term indicating either a prostitute and the term would have been used by French

stupid things; doing American soldiers to address would

Louisianian soldiers who French-speaking have brought the term back home after the war.52 Others believed to Andrew Jackson's from the name given that coonass was derived volunteers when

Tennessee

their they came to New Orleans wearing not unlikely that that "it is Ancelet coonskin proposed caps.53 Recently, coonass racist notions of the doubly evolved simply as an expression that Cajuns were even lower on the social scale than coons (a disparag on the the disagreement Whatever ing term for African Americans)." on several points: the term is recent, used as there was consensus origin, a derogative and by Cajuns as "a term of endearement by non-Cajuns, haved used the word that African Americans in the same way to try to disarm that hurtful word."54 'nigger' among themselves

much

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Journal of American

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In the 1970s, the use of the term came under scrutiny. Edwin Edwards, was chastised the term for using the self-proclaimed Cajun Governor, a Cajun employee filed suit against his employer who liberally. In 1977, term to the use of the derogatory he objected had fired him because coonass; Amidst Louisiana of items the case was extensive media settled out of court coverage, condemned in favor of the employee.55 the and prompted by Cajun activists, use of the slur and forbid the sale the

legislature

met by reactions it. Despite these developments, displaying from support to derision,56 coonass remains used among Cajuns, ranging males of Cajun extraction who [... ] primarily by "young working-class as a kind of macho see the term assertion of their earthy, pungent mas to Cajuns was boogerlee/bougalie term addressed derogative it referred to a French and bougalee, Also ['bug li]. spelled boogalee or taunting black and white ancestry; "a contemptuous person of mixed a synonym of Cajun name for a lower-class Cajun,"58 itwas considered and coonass. Orleans area. Discussion Scant data indicate a limited use, confined to the New culinity."57 Another

and out-of-state of racial purity of coonasses, boogerlees a relative of Cajun: of the prestige improvement represented Cajans exiles in Louisiana could be called of the Acadian after all, descendants more to the names In a shift similar than Cajun. pejorative turn-of-the-century embody inNew positive Orleans and Cajun, Cajun split between Acadian were described that other derivatives qualities the Louisiana Cajuns: came to as lack

ing; in 1966, an editorialist proposed to name the fledgling football team


Pro gridders should have a name that denotes courage, valor, stamina, short all the virtues that are inbred in the manly boldness and daring?in of Louisiana.59 Cajuns to become the New Orleans franchise was though the NFL a drastic evolution in the use and mean Saints, the endeavor symbolized it had ing of the word: Cajun no longer carried the stigma with which this evo writers for the popular press reflected been associated. Again, Even lution. Reporting for National Geographic, Keating wrote:

dwellers of the Loui The estimated quarter of a million French-speaking siana coastal marsh do not accept strangers easily. Louisiana Frenchmen show an un-Gallic reserve, possibly because their English-speaking neigh them. bors have often misunderstood

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45

For instance, before I began my latest tour of Acadiana, I chatted with an Anglo-Saxon state official who expressed alarm at my free use of the
word "Cajun."

"Don't
to them."

let them hear you call them Cajuns," he said. "It's a dirty word

Like most of his Anglo-Saxon neighbors, the nervous official has man to spend his life among the French-speakers of southern Louisiana aged without once noticing that Cajuns is precisely what they call themselves.60 ascription by outsiders was mirrored by an increasingly posi 3 documents the appearance of Cajun in the Table self-image. use by businesses and its ever-increasing Lafayette telephone directory in the heart of Cajun country. By the mid-sixties, the use of Cajun was Positive tive to both acceptable The factors of structure. negative way of became The insiders this shift and outsiders. are found in Louisiana's social changing a had left Cajun with split to the American of Cajuns As Cajuns The Ameri

postbellum Acadian/Cajun the rapid acculturation ascription, in positive life resulted and self-image. ascription more American, became more Cajun acceptable. Of

in the American of Cajuns was itself the result of changes and urbanization had industrialization these, mechanization, society. on on the rural Louisiana and especially the strongest effect population, to the American culture was evident Cajuns. The integration of Cajuns canization use of the French language, the decline of agricultural in the decreasing and the rise of industry and service jobs, the encroachment occupations consumer of Protestantism, the adoption habits from of American to entertainment. The growing of Louisiana foodways homogenization the distinction between landscape seemingly made Cajuns and of Cajuns the visibility less pertinent. Nevertheless, increased the less objective the difference, the more it dramatically; symbolic was reflected in the use of Cajun/cadien. became. This development cultural others were once again used as synonyms. The First, Cajun and Acadian at the beginning that separated Cajuns from Acadians distinction of the to the The reversal of ascription was extended century had weakened. a "corrupted of the term: long characterized term," Cajun/ etymology cadien Louisiana had become a "natural and Senate Resolution provided A linguistic derivative." legitimate a definition of "Acadians (Cajuns)":

in Canada were Louisianians originating from the province of Acadia named and identified as Acadians and likewise as Cajuns since the word Cajun is a natural and legitimate linguistic derivative of the word Acadian in the English language.61

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Journal of American

Ethnic History

/ Summer

1998

'S .2

'

> ?9

(D ? 4> S3 t? S

"S u G,

!"?Cd O
o.t?

cd

fi ?^T-r-l (-4 r .fana


a 3 O

n *

vo K

CA ?D

3 O 00

S3T.

PQ I cm O CM t?

t? ?+-. S ?<Dsi o c* ?nw ?LJ t? o

^t? S
O Q* <u O ?^ II <->os ?S t? u O \p ?

<s so en

<s ?o ?? 3 es v> 1-1 J2 m

1 ?
t? O .s .S

IS

s = 3
w w _ m _ ?2 ? <s ?o <-" ^3

00^ S Os t? O T3 ^ o O (D ? O t? >, b?*? 'S t> ? cd *? 2

^ O r& t? <D Os b?Os s-, .

is <->

ill

i'? M 00

^?
~,2

t-i

<D

g. s (Dil 80 t? ^ c

t? S? M-f

? !> *1 c??s
.S w <

?
8*3

? c

11 1 I < < u? u

il 11 111111 u -< < < o

fill <s <s u|| usi -c? I s w <

'S s?! S o 11 s? > .? ESG t? tu

CQB B< o w

?*? C^

03 <d t? r; t?

b?A <; .. ? ?j c? >% .9? to cd a oo O a o 's .a oo

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Henry

47

A typical example of the joint use of both terms is found at the


University of Southwestern the "Universit? Louisiana. Located Acadiana, that supports des Acadiens" in Lafayette, the heart of has a "Ragirf Cajun" mascot or in the Cajundome. increase of in usage the movement both by in of ethnic

teams playing at Cajun Field a dramatic Second, Cajun experienced siders and outsiders. It is a consequence renewal in the late 1970s that developed for with ethnic the Development the mission

Council

state agency The ensuing

French Movement, awareness to its increased In addition among Cajuns. promoting use in the Lafayette area, Cajun became a statewide brand name utilized in areas where search fifty-six hits Acadians had not settled in contract with of businesses

the creation of the following a of French in Louisiana (CODOFIL), to promote Louisiana's French culture. as itwas dubbed, is widely credited for

not only in Louisiana but nation reportedly became associated with a great variety of products, wide. Indeed, Cajun Louisiana so, in French and Anglo items, and techniques; alike, there "Cajun Computers," "Cajun Police Supply," appeared "Cajun popcorn," and a whole range of culinary products, "Cajun Beauties" and many "Cajun" hot sauces. Pizza," "Cajun Whaler," French culture also led to a 300 percent of Louisiana's the most used term such as "Cajun The popularity increase in the

in 1987 and seventy-five helping sales and promotion

and no Cajuns lived; a computer the State of Louisiana yielded in 1994.62 Now "hot," Cajun was

use of ethnic identitymarkers based on Acadia between 1975 and 1995;


a combination and is now Acadiana, of Acadia in 1964 and adopted as the official name of the south Louisiana, west area of the state in 1971 (see Table 3). Alternate, stylicized spell in (in the name of several businesses ings have also appeared: Kajun coined Southwest a fleur store in Baton Rouge with Louisiana), (a convenience Kajon in the o), KAJUN radio station in Baton Rouge whose (a lys and cowboy boots), KAJN (a radio logo was adorned by an alligator KJIN (a radio station in Houma). station in Abbeville), de

THE MOVE FOR SELF-DEFINITION


In parallel, and frequency was the French of use. term also experienced in context, form changes a debate within In 1978, the French community

The English spell engaged on the spelling of Cajun/cadien/cadjin. was normalized, in but the French spelling was not. Cajuns writing ing some used the to follow; French and/or English had no clear guidelines

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48

Journal of American

Ethnic History

/ Summer

1998

abbreviated Acadians

term while because,

others

declared Nous wrote,

Sommes

Acadiens/We

Are

as Arceneaux

It is therefore proper to insist on the word Acadian in its ancestral accu racy as opposed to themeaningless unorthographic corruption Cajun which obscures the literary association and historical significance of the name.63 the editors of the newsletter by necessity, Prompted published by CODOFIL asked their readers to choose between to "Cajun or Cadjin" A handful of responses Louisiana designate Cajuns. proposed Cadjin, Cajun, A repeated at and coonass. 'cadien, Cadien, Cajin, Acadien some forty comments to gather a in 1980 yielded but also failed tempt a disappointed commented editor: consensus; lemot "Acadien" vient largement en t?te, avec troisi?me support ers. Cajun vient en deuxi?me loin derri?re: sept place, mais votes. Ensuite viennent Cadien et Cajin avec cinq voix chacun;
Fran?ais-Acadien, Louisianais, Acadien Acadien-Franco

the word "Acadien" is clearly ahead with thirteen supporters. a distant second Cajun places
with seven votes. Then come

Cadien and Cajin with five votes each; Fran?ais-Acadien, Acadien


Louisianais, Am?rica Acadien, Acadien-Franco in et Franco-Am?ricain one each.

Am?ricain
cain-Acadien,

et Franco-Am?ri
un chacun.

In addition,
ignorants

two comics or two


"coonass"

De plus, deux petits comiques, ou deux inconscients, ont sug g?r? "coonass," bien que cette possibilit? n'?tait pas pr?vue.

suggested

which was not even offered as a


choice.64

was made. A decade elapsed before another attempt at formalization context. The publication in a different It developed of texts in Cajun French and debates on the type of French to teach had occupied cultural was a greater awareness activists for the better part of the decade; there and writing the various brands of Louisi for a demand of Cajun and the persisting popularity to create a sense of urgency; "if we do not French name contributed else is going to do it for us," wrote choose a 'standard' name, somebody a group of was due. Ultimately, one Cajun activist.65 Normalization of the difficulties ana French. in defining The Louisiana nized writers a committee of CODOFIL gathered under the auspices to standardize written Louisiana French. and orga

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49

order of business was the coining of a French name. The of Cajun was unanimous it reflected because the English pro nunciation. Two positions it was emerged. One favored cadjin because The first exclusion unique to Louisiana, noted the pronunciation, the adequately especially and gave the morphologically correct feminine the other [dj], cadjine; it clearly established Acadian had ancestry, opted for cadien because accounted to designate Acadian settlements outside ancestral Acadie for the difference between oral and written communication. and

been used

Of course, the debate involved issues larger than the correct spelling or the novel of a word, no matter how symbolic, of old interpretation was of boundary maintenance or rather construc the issue definitions; Louisiana reaction to cultural imperial to put an end to the linguistic exploitation to the traditional orthography "'Cadien' name us." Ancelet concurred: crime to impose on (1) "It's a colonialist . . . us a spelling which we begin to change reflects pronunciation (2)If we risk to reflect all the different accents in Louisiana, the orthography the French spoken in Louisiana, it back further into its alienating driving corner. We have ... to establish a means us of communication between ism; Guidry urged CODOFIL and to promote of "Cadiens" and the rest of the French-speaking On the other side, Marcantel spelling objectified the Acadian connection; Pour the ethnic cadjin world."66 for cadjin because its unique of Cajuns and de-emphasized diversity is not a synonym o? acadien because argued To be Cajun, one does not need
to trace its genealogy. ...Ifit is

tion. Some

called

for a French

?tre cadjin, on n'est pas oblig? de faire des recherches


Si on accepte

g?n?alogiques....

(et je pense que c'est que la admis) g?n?ralement et la cuisine cadjine musique cadjine r?sultent d'un m?lange volontier
d'influences caines, fran?aises, espagnoles, am?ricaines, afri acadiennes, etc.

agreed (as I think it widely is) that Cajun music and Cajun cui sine are the result of Spanish,
African, French, American, German and Acadian, other in

fluences, why is it so hard to ad mit that the Cajun people is a


combination tures? of these same cul

allemandes,

? ad est-il difficile pourquoi mettre que le peuple cadjin est


un m?lange tures? de ces m?mes cul

In the end, the committee the variant cadjin, ognized

recommended in line with

the spelling the guidelines

cadien adopted

and rec for the

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50

Journal of American

Ethnic History

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1998

writing may

of Louisiana emerge as the

French.67

Recent

observations

suggest

that cadien

and among leading French-speaking spelling it is used by organizations Cadienne, French-writing Cajuns; {Renaissance Action Cadienne, Association des Etudiants Louisiana authors Cadiens), and French-language These developments ethnicity. ence and denote Once exclude publications.68 are clearly linked to the recent evolution to delineate of Cajun differ

a marker

a cultural

used by outsiders a group, to the label is now controlled by Cajun difference from the inside. This control was achieved of symbols, including a group name but also area. in 1969 and a name for the geographical of reference in which Cajunness is defined has been limited any longer to the American of an official frame of reference, of a play performed society and cul defined by out by the Th??tre

a social

by manipulations mostly of a flag the adoption First, the context it is not changed; ture. The

inadequacy

siders, is expressed 'Cadien:

in this excerpt

"Elle a dit: "Est-ce que vous ?tes "ben non," j'y ai Am?ricain?" dit. "Les Amaricains, ?a reste au Nord des Avoyelles, pis dans les auf ?tats, pas par icitte." "Est-ce que vous ?tes noir?" J'ai dit,
"Non." cain?" "Non." "Chinois" "Non." "Non." "Puerto "Mexi Ricain?" "Non."

"She said: Are you American? " "Well no, I said. "The Ameri cans live north of Avoyelles, and in the other states, but not around " " "Are you Black? here. I said, "
" " "No. can?" " No. "Amerindian?" "Chinese? "No." "No. "Puerto "Mexi Rican?" " I said "No.

"Am?rindien?"

J'ai dit, "Non, j'ai jamais attendu parler de cette qualit? de monde l?." "Bien," a dit, "c'est la fin de la liste. Alors vous n'?tes pas une minorit? reconnue!" J'ai dit, ti veut dire que tous "Madame, les Cadjins se ressemblont?" A dit, "Non, je veux dire que vous
pas une minorit?. Que

"No, I never heard of this kind of "


people. "Well, "she said, "that's

the end of the list. Then you are " not an official minority! I said, " all Cajuns look alike? She said, "No, I just mean that you are not a minority. What the hell are " you? I said, "Madam, in Bayou Saint Pierre, everybody is Cajun,
" Acadian. She said, "No, that's "Miss, do you mean to say that

n'?tes

diable

?tes-vous alors? J'ai dit, ? Bayou "Madame, St-Pierre, tout le monde est Cadjin,
A dit, "Non, pas pos

not possible. This is not on the in list. The federal government


Washington, about you. D.C. " has never heard

Acadien."

sible. Ce n'est pas sur la liste. Le gouvernement ? f?d?ral n'a jamais entendu Washington

Think about it. We have been here in Louisiana for over two

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51

parler

de

vous."

Pensez-donc.

On est icitte en Louisiane depuis au-dessus de deux si?cles et Vont y jamais attendu parler de
nous-aut.' envouaye dans quoi-ce Le gouvernement tout pour se passe, partout sa'oir mais y le C.I.A. le monde qui

centuries and they never heard about us. The government sends the CIA all over the world to find out what's going on, but they never looked in Bayou Saint Pierre to find us. She said, "Do you speak afor eign
been

z'ont
St-Pierre

jamais
pour

fouill?
nous

? Bayou

language?" "
"How in America?"

I said,
long "Well,

"Yeah,
you we've

American.

have

d?couvert.

dit, "Est-ce que vous une langue ?trang?re?" parlez A


J'ai "Est-ce dit, "Ouais, que vous I'amaricain." ?tes en Am?ri

been in Louisiana for over two centuries but we've been in America for over 370 years. We were inAmerica before theAmeri
cans" (.. .) doubt. you "Then," I know are. "Yeah, You she who are said, ex Sav now are. "no more actly ages!" I know what

que depuis longtemps?" "Ouais, on est en Louisiane depuis au-dessus de deux si?c', mais on est en Amarique depuis plus de 370 ans. On ?tait en Amar
ique (...) avant "Alors," les Amaricains." a dit, "il n'y a

I said, exactly

madam, you

what

You 're a jerk! "69 sais


que

plus
maintenant

de ?tes.
asteur

question.
exactement

Je
ce

vous
sauvages!" dame,

Vous
J'ai je dit, connais

?tes
"Ouais,

des
ma

exacte

ment

?a que t'es toi itou. T'es eine couillonne!"

lafrancophonie, the French-speaking term is of Cajun and the adoption of a French rejection not only for French Louisiana but the positioning of Cajuns necessary within the French-speaking world. Like the emergence of Cajun sym an American the advent of bolized ethnic group, the emergence o? cadien world. The symbolizes spective, the Acadian the inclusion after more of Cajuns in the francophonie. From this per than two centuries in Louisiana, of the descendants or cr?oles and even exiles are no longer fran?ais, acadiens they are cadiens; as Daigle put it:

The new

referential

venue

is now

less Cajuns: the words

Cajun and Acadian do not have the same meaning. The word Cajun applies only to those whose Acadian ancestors came to Louisiana after the eviction of 1755, whereas the broader term Acadian applies to all

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52

Journal of American

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1998

the descendants of the original Acadians, regardless of where they now live. Thus, all Cajuns are Acadians but not all Acadians are Cajuns.70 The distinction debate lighted guages on is not only symbolic, it is found in social practice. The to teach in Louisiana the type of French classrooms high between and French-based lan the difference standard French in the state. The criticism by Cajun activists of the aca

found

demic French bend of the initial CODOFIL endeavors focused on the


of Cajun culture. From this emerging Louisiana Cadien now labels a discrete group. perspective, francophone the control now asserted by Cajuns on their self-conception Second, to a linguis have already pointed is marked by inclusiveness. Linguists specificity and variety tic "continuum"71 a unique English, numerous cultural and interrelations French, Cajun, Creole and of the characteristic. The acceptance and integration is articu influences that shaped today's Cajunness between

lated in this definition of Cajuns by Reed, author of the first book published inCajun French:
un vrai Cajun qui reste dans le sud-ouest de la Louisiane ou Est-Texas, et qui a demeur? avec les les Fran?ais, les Allemands, les les Espagnols, Anglais, Italiens, les Indiens et les Noirs; et depuis 1804, avec les Am?ri Alors pour moi, est une personne cains; mais qui a gard? la langue
fran?aise-acadienne, qui a pre

Then for me, a real Cajun is a person who lives in Southwest


Louisiana or East Texas, and

who has lived with

serv? la culture acadienne pour 200 ans et qui a toujours ?t? fier S'il a de son h?eritage. (...) accept? apprise,
mieux

la langue fran?aise, l'a l'aime, et la parle le


peut, ?a, c'est un vrai

qu'il

Cajun! S'il a accept? la culture, les traditions, et la musique des Cajuns, il est un Cajun; et s'il garde son h?ritage acadien mal gr? tout les grands changements depuis le "grand d?rangement" en 1755, il est un des Acadiens II est peut-?tre un pauvre Cajun.

Germans, English, ians, Indians and Blacks; and since 1804, with the Americans; but who has kept the French Acadian language, who has pre served Acadian culture for 200 years and who has always been . .) If proud of its heritage. (. he has accepted the French lan learned it, loves it and guage, speaks to the best of his ability, he is a real Cajun; and if he has kept his Acadian heritage despite all the changes since the "great in of Acadians displacement" he is a Cajun. He may be 1755, poor or rich, Catholic or Bap tist, educated or not; but if he speaks Cajun, loves Cajun mu sic, kept the old ways, then he

the French, Spanish, Ital

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53

ou un riche, un catholique ou un bien inform? dans Baptiste, l'?ducation ou pas du tout; mais s'il parle cajun, aime lamusique les vieilles cajune, garde de vivre, mani?res lui aussi devrait ?tre qualifi? comme un Cajun. Finalement, un Cajun est un Cajun, qu'il demeure dans le sud-ouest de la Louisiane ou Los ou les pays Houston Angeles, ?trangers. ?a c'est ?a le Cajun qui croit qu'il est un Cajun." In line with bodies Barth's view of ethnic

should be called a Cajun. In the end, A Cajun is a Cajun, whether he lives in southwest Louisiana,
Los Angeles, Houston or abroad.

A Cajun

is one if he believes

he

is a Cajun.72

in its form

the inclusiveness

identity, this statement also em the use of of its content; it displays

the English noun (Cajun) in a French text with themorphological ad


justments gender of capitalization and Cajun as noun) and (cajun as adjective as well as the various synonyms feminine (acadien, (the cajune) from within remains and inclusive, Cajun ethnicity in French, as exemplified the cadien/cadjin de by or rather from the from the inside and the outside, Cajun ethnicity may be viewed.

francaise-acadienne). defined Positive, challenged bate, or in English, various perspectives Cajun acterize whether

term to char when used as a derogatory had been problematic class the lowest of the illiterate, and altogether poor the of Acadian exiles. By the 1980s, descendants non-Americanized term was destigmatized, and used liberally by Cajuns positively charged of alike. Interestingly, and non-Cajuns it remains problematic. the term still symbolizes its connotation, differences. became symbol of Cajunness, Cajun/cadien encompassing Regardless As the all a contested

battleground.

The commercial exploitation of Cajun did not sit well with cultural
activists, who objected to the construction Renowned plained of being "Cajuned-out." Not just Cajun music. commented: "Cajun is being so commercialized. the same view it's going to be too much"; Someday Cajun everything. "once prompted musician, instrument maker and local sage Marc Savoy to answer The discovered?' a reporter's question, 'Are you sorry the Cajuns have been with 'I'm sorrier the Cajuns have discovered themselves.'"73 to react. outsiders of Louisiana" also prompted "Cajunization and com of a stereotype Cajun musician Dewey Balfa

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54 Journal of American

Ethnic History

/ Summer

1998

Louisiana we're products

merchants to solve

worried.

state marketing

official

commented:

"Our problem

trying marketed

is that Cajun is very, very popular is the fake Cajun problem."

prompted

Louisiana

legislature the Commissioner "out-of-state,

in Illinois, New by companies to take action. and food producers officials a logo for Louisiana authorized the adoption of products of Agriculture threatened to sue

What right now.... of "Cajun" Reports Jersey or Tennessee The and of The

logo currently In New Orleans, because could wrote: What be of

producers copy-cat Cajun food."74 bad-tasting, red-pepperhot, in use reads "Product of Louisiana Certified Cajun"

the liberal use of the Cajun label was also contested its inadequacy. As the economic benefits of Cajunization taunted throughout the French Quarter, a columnist

seen and

those visitors probably don't know is that New Orleans isn't a and never was. Creole, yes; Cajun, no. But the city, curi Cajun town, ously, has become the center of the Cajun revival [initiated by Chef] Paul Prudhomme. Prudhomme's food is not the Cajun food that settlers of yore used to eat.. .. [The French] Quarter, a place that played a role in the of Cajun culture at two stages?the very beginning when development the original Acadians arrived at the port of New Orleans; and the
Prudhomme revival.75

In a study of C?cyle Trepanier in the southwest Acadian made flag

the cultural

of French Louisiana, diversity geographer that the designation of twenty-two proposed parishes and the adoption of the Louisiana region as Acadiana,

awkward the place of Italian, Spanish, Scots-Irish 'Cajuns' by re to an old Acadian ferring identity, and definitely prevented blacks and Indians of French culture from being Cajuns.76

when a Cajun Indeed black legislators legisla responded vigorously tor attempted to include "French Acadians" among officially recognized to Cajuns the ben minorities. Such a distinction have extended would to efits of set-aside programs and other economic advantages provided and "ludicrous"; minorities. Black labeled the bill "facetious" legislators as an attempt to water down affirmative itwas widely described action, and itwas ultimately vetoed by the governor.77 a campaign an "Afrikan-American" to activist has been waging Also, protest the inclusion of Louisiana blacks under the label Cajun. J.J.

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Henry

55

Harmon

the naming of the University protested ' ana athletic teams as Ragin Cajuns:

of Southwestern

Louisi

Southwest Louisiana is pluralistic in every sense of the word with Acadians, Afrikans (30%), French, Germans, Puerto Ricans, Spanish, etc. who to gether made and make the area what it is. How dare the Cajuns co-opt, usurp and suck all of the honey!78 The "Cajun" participants issue and generated "nigger" of Cajun remarked: a campus both could not debate. racial totally noted that participant in the past and that the erase the connotation. Other One

were

slurs

"cleaning-up"

If this university became home of the Ragin' Niggers, how many white students would attend this university? How many of you would go and This is not a mascot cheer the Ragin' Niggers? This is not issue... anti-Cajun. This is un-Cajun. It simply means that we are not Cajun.79 The both reinforce ers. The assert both was name issue is symbolic of a wider movement the racial difference between whites seen black identity of Louisiana's the development of actions culture. An that contributed and blacks French-speak by Creoles and to

to reassert 1980s their

the French-based have race and

association, Inc., to promote Louisiana Creole culture through stu cultural activities such as zydeco dances and discus dent exchanges, are published in 1990, sions of cr?olit?; magazines (Creole Magazine in 1995); and zydeco, Creole Experience the accordion-based folk mu formed in 1987 has gained sic of Creoles, with radio festivals, significant popularity awarded to Creole musicians. programs and Grammy's as a derogative, Used by outsiders the use of Cajun/cadien had long The situation is now reversed: confronted been contested by Cajuns.

C.R.E.O.L.E.

with now

the liberal use inclusive

of the term, outsiders term. The cultural content

in the past hundred years. What considerably of difference: cultural markers race, Acadian religion, reotyped the good the maintenance by the much-used times roll).

also changed are the changed French origin, language, of particular folkways and a Cajun ethos ste formula Laissez les bons temps rouler (Let has not

tend to reject of Cajunness

the use

of the

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56

Journal of American

Ethnic History

/ Summer

1998

CONCLUSION
The social definition and of Cajun ethnicity has been on-going since the arrival in Louisiana. It has taken place amidst the economic, that have happened since the eighteenth cultural changes exiles

of Acadian

the descendants of Acadian exiles century. The names used to designate In this sense, the evolution this evolution. of Cajun/ have espoused cadien symbolizes the processual definition of Cajun ethnicity. occurrences of the written shows that The analysis of Cajun/cadien in early Acadian and that it was codified and the term originated speech in English in the 1880s. The negative connotation emerged popularized Acadian it split between an Acadian community when and a Cajun lower class. There again, the negative ascrip upper-class media. tion of Cajun spread in English through mostly English-language With the integration of Cajuns to American culture, the term Cajun took from the Louisiana on a positive connotation sance movement resulted of Cajun and the codifying in the 1960s; the subsequent in an increased and sometimes of cadien by Cajun activists. French renais use contested

The manipulation of these symbols of Cajun ethnicity is framed by


the interaction ascription boundaries in contact. change how Cajun of outsiders and insiders. The assignment of a name, the of a name are indicators of qualities, the rejection of the between the Acadians and the groups with whom they came These boundaries The the historical social context, of the use of Cajun/cadien shows analysis is less a matter of cultural content than a dialectical defined by what they were not rather than by shift with

and perspective.

process. Cajuns what they were. Further

ethnicity have been

analysis will Cajun/cadien

describe, to portrayals by nov from Longfellow's trolled by outsiders, Evangeline insiders have been increasingly involved. elists and journalists. Recently, lead to a reassessment This analysis will of Barth's view of ethnicity and more recent theories of symbolic ethnicity by focusing on the inter relations between historic-cultural social tations and Louisiana's differences, structure. their symbolic represen

of the symbolic characteristics ascribed to those called not show that cultural traits are used to construct, con In the past this process has been mostly the "otherness."

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Henry

57

NOTES
Iwould like to thank Barry Ancelet and Carl Brasseaux for their interest in and contributions to this project. Also, thanks to Richard Guidry, David Marcantel and
anonymous reviewers.

1. Dorice Tentchoff, "Cajun French and French Creole: Their Speakers and the Questions of Identities" in The Culture of Acadiana: Tradition and Change in South Louisiana, ed. Steven DelSesto and Jon Gibson (Lafayette, La., 1975); and Cecyle Trepanier, "The Cajunization of French Louisiana: Forging a Regional Iden tity," The Geographical Journal, 157:2 (1991): 161-71. 2. Larbi Oukada, "The Territory and Population of French-Speaking Louisi ana," Revue de Louisiane/Louisiana Review, 7:1 (Summer, 1978): 5-34; and Robert Gramling, Craig Forsyth & Linda Mooney, "The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Cajunism," Journal of Ethnic Studies, 15(1986): 33-^6. 3. Math? Allain, "Twentieth-Century Acadians" in The Cajuns: Essays on their History and Culture ed. Glenn Conrad (Lafayette, La., 1978), pp. 129-41; Jacques
Henry, Le mouvement louisianais de renouveau francophone: Vers une nouvelle

identit? cadjine (doctoral diss., Universit? Paris V-Ren? Descartes, 1983); and Barry Ancelet, Jay Edwards and Glen Pitre, eds., Cajun Country (Jackson, Miss., 1991). 4. James Dormon, "Ethnie Groups and 'Ethnicity': Some Theoretical Consider ations," The Journal of Ethnic Studies, 7:4 (1980): 23-36; Charles R. Brassieur, "The Modem Atchafalaya Culture: Results of the Ethnographic Survey" in Arche ology and Ethnology on the Edges of the Atchafalaya Basin, South Central Louisi ana, ed. Jon Gibson (Lafayette, La., 1982), pp. 153-242; and James Dormon, The People Called Cajuns: An Introduction toEthnohistory (Lafayette, La., 1983). 5. Written occurrences of Cajun/cadien and other words are noted with italics; oral realizations of [kedzAn] and other words are noted in phonetics; general refer ences to the Cajuns or Acadiens are in basic typeface. 6. Historical Records Survey, The Favrot Papers 1695-1769 (New Orleans, La., 1940) and The Favrot Papers 1769-1781, Volume II (New Orleans, La., 1941); 1764-1789" in The Cajuns, Gabriel Debien, "The Acadians in Santo Domingo: pp.21-96; and Carl Brasseaux, Emilio Fabian Garcia and Jacqueline Voorhies, eds., Quest for thePromised Land (Lafayette, La., 1989). 7. William Read, Louisiana French (Baton Rouge, La., 1931); Florence Roos Brink, "Literary Travellers in Louisiana Between 1803 and 1860," The Louisiana Historical Quarterly, 31:2(1948): 1-32; Timothy Reilly, "Early Acadiana through Anglo-American Eyes," Attakapas Gazette, 12:1(1977): 3-20, 12:3(1977): 159-77, 12:4(1977): 185-94, 13:2(1978): 53-71; and Carl Brasseaux and Glenn Conrad, A Selected Bibliography of Scholarly Literature on Colonial Louisiana and New France (Lafayette, La., 1982). References for Tables 1 and 2 are listed in these works. 8. See Michael Moerman, "Ethnic Identification in a Complex Civilization: Who Are the Lue?" American Anthropologist, 67:5(1)(1965): 1215-30; Joshua Fishman, "'Am and Goy as Designations for Ethnicity in Selected Books of the Old Testament" in The Rise and Fall of Ethnic Revival: Perspectives on Language and Ethnicity, ed. Joshua Fishman (Berlin, 1985); and Leo Papademetre, "Self-defined, in a other-defined cultural identity: Logogenesis and multiple-group membership and Multi Greek-Australian sociolinguistic community," Journal of Multilingual cultural Development, 15:6(1994) :507-25. 9. James Hintze and Larbi Oukada, "The lexical item cre?le in Louisiana," Journal of the Linguistic Association of the Southwest, 2(1977): 143-61; Virginia

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58 Journal of American

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/ Summer

1998

in Creole Louisiana (New Dom?nguez, White by Definition: Social Classification Brunswick, N.J., 1986); James Dormon, "Louisiana 'Creoles of Color': Ethnicity, Marginality, and Identity," Social Science Quarterly, 7:3(1992): 615-26; Gwendolyn Midlo Hall, Africans in Colonial Louisiana: The Development of Afro-Creole Cul ture in Louisiana in the Eighteenth Century (Baton Rouge, La., 1992), pp. 157-9; and Joseph Tregle, "Creoles and Americans" in Creole New Orleans: Race and Americanization, ed. Arnold Hirsch and Joseph Logsdon (Baton Rouge, La., 1992),
pp. 131-88.

10. Edward Laroque Tinker, Les ?crits de langue fran?aise en Louisiane au XIX?me si?cle (Paris, 1932) and Bibliography of French Newspapers and Periodi cals in Louisiana (Worcester, Mass., 1933); David Barry, "A French Literary Re naissance in Louisiana: Cultural Reflections,' 'Journal of Popular Culture, 23 (1989): 47-63; and Becky Brown, "The Social Consequences ofWriting Louisiana French," Language in Society, 22 (1993): 67-101. 11. Dudley Leblanc, The True Story of the Acadians (Lafayette, La., 1932); Antoine Bernard, Le Drame Acadien (Montr?al, 1936); Alfred Martineau, "Les
survivances fran?aises en Louisiane," Revue d'histoire des colonies, (2?me trimestre,

1937), pp. 113-24; and Bona Arsenault, Histoire et g?n?alogie des Acadiens (Qu?bec, 1965). 12. Pascal Poirier, Glossaire acadien (Moncton, 1953), p. 18. There are no claims thatAkkadie, a region inAncient Persia, is a source despite the phonetic similarity.
13. Arsenault, Histoire pp.266-7.

14. Archivo General de Indias, Papeles procedentes de Cuba, legajo 188C, fo lios 62-63, Seville, Spain. I am indebted to Barry Ancelet and Carl Brasseaux for providing this information. 15. Bernard, Le Dame; Poirier, Glossaire, p. 18; and Genevi?ve Massignon, Les parler sfran?ais d'Acadie: Enqu?tes linguistiques, 2 vols (Paris, 1962). 16. Alc?e Fortier, Louisiana Studies: Literature, Customs and Dialects, History and Education (New Orleans, La., 1894); Sidonie de La Houssaye, Pouponne et Balthazar (1888; reprint ed. Lafayette, La., 1983). 17. Cayens has been used by Emile Lauvri?re in "P?lerinage acadien et canadien en Louisiane," Fr anee-Am?rique, 1931) and Histoire de la (Ao?t-Septembre, Louisiane Fran?aise (Baton Rouge, La., 1940) and Poirier, Glossaire; cajin was used by Lauren C. Post, "Acadian Animal Caste in Southwest Louisiana: Some Sociological Observations," Rural Sociology, 5:2 (1940): 183-91; Cadgiens by Poirier, Glossaire; Cajen by Richard Guidry, "Un Cajen en Guadeloupe," Acadiana Profile, 3:1(1971): 4; Cadjun by Jeanne Castille, Moi, Jeanne Castille de Louisiane (Paris, 1983); Cadjein by Ain Cadjein inmanuscripts mailed anonymously in 1987; Cadjien appears on a sign at the Prairie Acadian Cultural Center, Eunice, La. 18. William A. Craigie and James R. Hulbert, eds, A Dictionary of American English, vol 1, (Chicago, 1938), p.384; Oxford English Dictionary, A Supplement to (London, 1972), p.414; and Frederic G. Cassidy, ed., Dictionary of American Re gional English, vol. 1, (Cambridge, Mass, and London, 1985), p.507.
19. J.O. Noyes, "Cotton Planting at Port Hudson," Putnam's Magazine, 2:7(1868):

54; Albert Rhodes, "The Louisiana Creoles," The Galaxy, 16(1873): 253; Charles Nordhoff, The Cotton States in the Spring and Summer of 1875 (New York, 1876),
p. 73. 20.

Harper's New Monthly Magazine, 75-450(1887): 918, andWilliam H. Perrin, South west Louisiana Biographical and Historical (New Orleans, 1891), p. 104; 'Cadian by Kate Chopin (1894) in "At the Cadian Ball" The Complete Works of Kate Chopin, ed. Per Seyersted, (Baton Rouge, La., 1969), Cajian in a 1906 court tran

Cajan

by Rebecca

H. Davis,

"Here

and There

in the South:

V.

In Attakapas,"

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Henry

59

script in Graigie and Hulbert, Dictionary, p.384; and Cajin in Thad St. Martin, "Cajuns," Yale Review, 26(1937): 859. 21. R.L. Daniels, "The Acadians of Louisiana," Scribner's Monthly, 19(1879):
107.

22. Julian Ralph, "Along the Bayou Teche," Harpers's New Monthly Magazine, 87(1893): 874.
23. "Cotton siana, De la Houssaye, p.73; Pouponne, Davis, "Here p.2 and p.34. p.918 and Perrin, Southwest Loui

24. Noyes,
States," p. 103.

"Cotton Planting," p.54. Quotation marks were used by Nordhoff,


and There,"

25. Jay K. Ditchy,


p.65.

ed., Les Acadiens

louisianais

et leur parler

(Paris, 1932), 1895


re

26. Pierre G?rin and Pierre M. G?rin, Manchette: 1898, (Sherbrooke, 1982).
27. Jean Bernard Bossu, Nouveaux voyages aux

Lettres Acadiennes
Indes occidentales

(1763;

print ed., Paris, 1980), Nouveaux Voyages dans l'Am?rique Septentrionale (Amsterdam, 1777); Baudry des Lauzi?res, Voyage ? la Louisiane et sur le conti nent de l'Am?rique septentrionale fait dans les ann?es 1794 ? 1798 (Paris, 1802); Fran?ois Rene vicomte de Chateaubriand, Voyage en Am?rique, en Italie, au Mont Blanc (1827) in Oeuvres Compl?tes (Paris, 1929); Paul Marc Sauvalle, Louisiane Aventures Cosmopolites (Montr?al, 1891). Mexique-Canada: 28. Major Amos Stoddard, Sketches, Historical and Descriptive, of Louisiana (Philadelphia, 1812), pp.319-30. 29. H.M. Brackenridge, Views of Louisiana (Pittsburgh, Pa., 1814); James L. Cathcart in "Southern Louisiana and Southern Alabama in 1819: Journal of James Leander Cathcart," ed. Walter Prichard, Fred Kniffen and Clair Brown, Louisiana Historical Quarterly, 28:3(1945): 735-921; and John Dennett, The South as It Is edited by Henry M. Christian (London, 1965) do not mention the 1865-1866, Acadians. Timothy Flint, Recollections of the Last Ten Years (Boston, Mass., 1826) and Journal of the Rev. Timothy Flint from the Red River to the Ouachita, or Washita, in Louisiana in 1835 (Alexandria, La., 1835); George Lewis Prentiss, ed., AMemoir of S.S. Prentiss, 2 vols. (New York, 1855). 30. See note 8 and Ingrid Neumann, Le Cr?ole de Breaux Bridge, Louisiane:
?tude morphosyntaxique, textes, vocabulaire (Hamburg, 1985).

31. Frederick L. Olmsted, A Journey in the Seaboard Slave States, 2 vols. (New York, 1856), p.342. 32. George W. Cable, The Creoles of Louisiana (New York, 1886) and Bonaventura (1888; reprint ed., New York, 1901).
33. 35. 36. 37. Perrin, Southwest Louisiana, pp. 103-4.

34. Ralph, "Along the Bayou," p.883.


Les Acadiens, Ditchy, p.65. The People, Dormon, p.43. to Cajun: Acadian Carl Brasseaux,

Transformation

of a People

1803-1877

Miss., 1992), pp.87-8. (Jackson, "Here 38. Davis, and There," 39. 40. Cable, See The Creoles, p.74

pp.917-8. and pp.260-; and Simone

Chopin, Delery 153-8;

"A Gentleman and Gladys

of Bayou France er, Une

T?che," in The Complete Works of Kate Chopin, pp.319-24.


Lauvri?re, "P?lerinage," (Ao?t Renshaw, Survey

d'Am?rique
Louisiane,"

(Chicago,
France-Am?rique

111., 1932); Gabriel-Louis


1937), pp.

Jaray, "Le destin


Edouard Fabre-

fran?ais en

journ?e fran?aise ? Lafayette et autres r?cits de voyage (Montr?al, 1938). 41. Adolphe Robert, M?morial (L'Association Ca?ado-Am?ricaine, 1940), p.383.

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60 Journal of American

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42. See Table 3, Tinker, Les ?crits, and Bibliography of French Newspapers, Carolyn Durai, "Bibliographie des ?crits louisianais fran?ais de 1900 jusqu'? nos jours," inLes autres litt?ratures d'expression fran?aise en Am?rique du Nord, ed. J. Tessier and P.L. Vaillancourt (Ottawa, 1987), pp. 155-64, and Barry Ancelet, "From Evangeline Hot Sauce to Cajun Ice: Signs of Ethnicity in South Louisiana" (paper presented at the American Folklore Society, October 1994). 43. See Leblanc, The True Story; H.W. Gilmore, "Social Isolation of the French-Speaking People of Rural Louisiana," Social Forces, 12(1933): 78-84; T. Lynn Smith, "An Analysis of Rural Social Organization in Louisiana," Journal of 16: 4(1934): 680-8; Vemon Parenton, "Notes on the Social Or Farm Economics, 17(1938): 73 ganization of a French Village in South Louisiana," Social Forces, 82; T. Lynn Smith and Vemon Parenton, "Acculturation among the Louisiana French," American Journal of Sociology, 44(1938): 355-64; Joel Fletcher, The Acadians in Louisiana Today (Lafayette, La., 1947); Harnett Kane, The Bayous of Louisiana (New York, 1943). 44. See Catherine Brookshire Blanchet, "Louisiana French Folk Songs among Children inVermilion Parish, 1942-54" (M.A. thesis, University of Southwestern Louisiana 1970); Ann Savoy, Cajun Music: A Reflection of a People, vol. 1 (Eunice, La., 1984). 45: Marguerite Pecot, "The 'Cajun" (M.A. thesis, Louisiana State University, 1932); Howard Jacobs, "Cajun Laugh-In," Acadiana Profile, 3:2(1971): 4-47.
46. Ralph Graves, "Louisiana, Land of Perpetual Romance," National Geo

graphic, 57:4(1930): 406. 47. Jonathan Daniels, A Southerner Discovers


p.227. 48. 49. St. Martin, "Cajuns," "The 'Cajun," pp.859-61. pp.iii-iv.

the South

(New York,

1938),

Pecot,

50. William H. Gilbert, "Memorandum concerning the characteristics of the racial islands of the Eastern United States," Social Forces, larger mixed-blood 24:4(1946): 439-40. 51. David C. Roller and Robert W. Twyman, The Encyclopedia of Southern History (Baton Rouge, La., 1979), p. 170. 52. State of Louisiana, Official Journal of the Proceedings of the Senate of the State of Louisiana, vol. 4, (Baton Rouge, La., 1981), p. 3243.
53. "Edwards under Fire for 'Coonass' Jibe," The States-Item, New Orleans, 24

October 1972. 54. Barry Ancelet,


55. James H.

"On Coonass," personal communication on file (1996).


"Native-Bom Acadians and the Equality Ideal,"

Domengeaux,

Louisiana Law Review, 46:6(1986): 1151-95. 56. Revon Reed, L?che pas la patate: Portrait des Acadiens de la Louisiane (Montr?al, 1976); '"Coon Ass' bill passes: Haik says it's stupid," Daily Iberian, New Iberia, 12 July 1981.
57. James Dormon, "Louisiana's Cajuns: A Case Study in Ethnic Group Revi

talization," Social Science Quarterly, 65(1984): 1054. 58. Frederic Cassidy, A Dictionary of American Regional English
Mass, and London, 1985), p.334; see also "New Orleans Know-It-All,"

(Cambridge,
Gambit,

New Orleans, 22 November 1988. 59. "Editorial," The Sunday Advertiser, Lafayette, 4 December
60. Bern Keating, "Cajunland. Louisiana's French Speaking

1966.
Coast," National

Geographic, 129:3(1966): 355. 61. State of Louisiana, Official Journal of the Proceedings
State of Louisiana, vol.4 (Baton Rouge, La., 1981), p.3243.

of the Senate of the

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Henry

61

62. Jacques Henry, "Actions and Actors in Social Change: The Louisana French in French and Creole in Louisiana, ed. Albert Valdman (New York, Movement" 1997), pp. 183-213. On the nationwide popularity of Cajun products, see "Cajun 1985 and John Maines, Chic," The Times of Acadiana, Lafayette, 21 November "The Road toMamou," American Demographics, 10:5(1988): 45-7. 63. George Arceneaux, Youth in Acadie: Reflections on Acadian Life and Cul ture in Southwest Louisiana (Baton Rouge, La., 1974), p.5; Myron Tassin, Nous Sommes Acadiens/We Are Acadians (Gretna, La., 1976). 64. Louisiane, Lafayette, 41 (December 1980); see also Louisiane Fran?aise, Lafayette, 11 (1 April 1978), 12 (15 April 1978), 13 (1 May 1978), 15 (15 June 1978), 16(1 July 1978). 65. La Gazette de Louisiane, Lafayette, vol. 1, 6 (Janvier 1991). 66. Quoted in (1) La Gazette de Louisiane, vol.3, 8(Mars 1991): 6 and (2) in Becky Brown, "The Social Consequences of Writing Louisiana French," Language in Society, 22(1993): 67-101. Material in this section comes from correspondence (on file) in 1991 with Barry Ancelet, Richard Guidry and David Marcantel; Barry Ancelet, "A Perspective on Teaching the 'Problem language' in Louisiana," The French Review, 61:3(1988): 345-56; and La Gazette de Louisiane, vol.3, 4(Novem ber 1990), 7(February 1991), vol.4, l(August-September 1993), 8(January-February 1995). 67. Interestingly, an anonymous writer using the name Ain Cadjein stayed out of the debate despite his interest and work in transcribing Louisiana French. Since 1975, he has been mailing to local radio stations handwritten then typed Cajun
French shunning translations conventional of classical "Parisian" literary works; orthography a using quasi-phonetic as much as possible, he and system used Cajun

when writing in English and Cadjein (feminine cadj?n?) when using French. 68. Jean Arceneaux, Je suis Cadien (Merrick, N.Y., 1994). See also note 66 and Feux Follets (Lafayette, La., 1991). le bon temps rouler en 69. Marc Untel de Gravelles, "Mille Mis?res?Laissant
Louisiane," Projet Louisiane, no.5 (Montr?al, 1979), p.3.

70. Jules Daigle, A Dictionary of the Cajun Language 1984), p.ix. 71. Ingrid Neumann, Le Cr?ole de Breaux Bridge, p.79.
72. Reed, L?che pas le patate, p.21.

(Ann Harbor, Mich.,

73. Kenneth Ford, "Cajuned-out," Acadiana Profile, Lafayette, 11:5(1984): 16; "A Cajun Journey," The Times Picayune, New Orleans, 16 August 1988. See also Trent Angers, The Truth about the Cajuns, (Lafayette, LA., 1990), and Ancelet,
"From Evangeline Hot Sauce," p.5.

74. See State of Louisiana, 1988, and "Louisiana Battling Countfeit Cajun," New York Times, 18 March 1989; "Imitation Cajun," The Times of Acadiana, Lafayette, 22 March 1989. 75. "Quarter Cajun," Gambit, New Orleans, 5-11 April 1986, vol. 7, 14.
76.

Eric Waddell, "French Louisiana: An Outpost o? L'Am?rique fran?aise, or Another Country and Another Culture?" Projet Louisiane, No. 4 (Montr?al, 1979).
77. Jacques Henry, "Un "What statut pour les Cajuns," Cajun?" The France Times Am?rique, of Acadiana, New York,

Trepanier,

"The

Cajunization

of

French

Louisiane,"

1991,

p.161;

see

also

23-29
78.

juin & 30 juin-6 juillet, 1988.


J.J. Harmon, is Authentic Lafayette,

12April 1989; "What's in It for Us?" The Times of Acadiana, Lafayette, 13August 1993. 79. "Free Speech Alley Reflects Racial Frustration," The Vermilion, Lafayette,
vol.88, 23 October 1992. Also, Ancelet proposed that "there may be some reverse

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62 Journal of American

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racism involved in this protest [since] the word Cajun has in fact long been consid ered an ethnic slur by some members of the African-American community" ("Ragin in a Name?" non-dated paper, on file); on this, see St. Martin Cajuns: What's
"Cajuns."

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