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Usian

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The word Usian (pronounced "YOU-zhuhn"; SAMPA: 'yuZ@n]) (or Usanian, USAian, Usonian, Columbard, Fredonian, Frede, Unisan, United Statesian, Colonican, Appalacian, Uessian, U-S-ian, Uesican, USAn, Usan, or rarely Columbian or Washingtonian) is one of the many attempts to coin an adjective--specifically, a demonym[?]--for United States nationals, as an unambiguous alternative to American, which is the term usually used. Mentions of the word, and proposals to use it (or close variants), have been around at least since the first half of the 20th century, but it is not in common use.

Use of the word has been practiced and advocated to distinguish U.S. nationals from people living in other countries in the Americas.

The concern that motivates use of the word is that, since America is part of the names of both North America and South America, it follows that American means, or ought to be understood to mean, "inhabitant of the Americas".

This takes on political and historical significance because of various doctrines, including manifest destiny, the Monroe Doctrine, jingoism, imperialism, anti-communism, oil imperialism and the Bush Doctrine. These have explicitly or implicitly or reputedly advocated explicit control of the Americas, and points far beyond, by the government of the United States. Citizens of that nation that wish to distance themselves from these goals, notably advocates of pacifism or isolationism or secession are more likely to use the term usian.

Since such movements have a long history and have motivated much of the colonization of North America, there are many variations of this idea and term. Other words that have been suggested for the same purpose are Columbian, Columbard, Fredonian, Frede, Unisian, United Statesian, Colonican, Appalacian, Washingtonian, Usonian ("Usonian" is an adaptation from Esperanto, apparently coined by Zamenhof; among its users was Frank Lloyd Wright), Uessian, U-S-ian, and Uesican (in approximately historical order from 1789 to 1939, according to Merriam Webster's Dictionary of English Usage).

Other examples observed in the field:

  • Usanian
  • USAian
  • USAn or USan but not usually "Usan"

It should be noted that several of these terms have direct parallels in languages other than English:

  • United Statesian directly parallels Spanish estadounidense.
  • Usonian is derived from Usono, the name in Esperanto of the USA.
  • Usanian is derived from the Ido word Usana.

Finally, it is sometimes half-humorously suggested that an 'American' who wishes to retain his North American status but disavow himself of imperial ambitions, warmongering[?], and repressive foreign policy needs only to move to nearby Canada and refer to himself then as a "Canadian", as many Vietnam draft dodgers[?] and members of other movements have done.

See also: Cultural imperialism, Ethnocentrism, Washingtonian

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