Avdeling for samfunnsmedisin og global helse, Universitetet i Oslo.
Our congratulations and support of the contribution to Språkspalten made by Erlend Hem and Per Brodal: “Skamben bør kastes ut av ordbøkene» (1). We agree the “shame bone” is a colloquial normalising of a depreciatory term, used by both medical practitioners and the population at large.
May we also suggest that the term “negresse” (2) is thrown out of Norwegian medical textbooks (3), such that it forgoes undiscerning duplication into contemporary Norwegian research (4). Given that the term has been described as potentially disparaging (2), "negresse" is an inappropriate descriptive when patients are discussed, in absentia, at clinical meetings. Particularly if the term bears no relevance to the patient’s differential diagnosis, management plan, or prognosis.