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For other uses, see Wigger (disambiguation).

Wigger is a slang term for a white person who emulates mannerisms, language, and fashions associated with African-American culture, particularly hip hop, and in Britain the Grime scene.[1] The term is a portmanteau of white and nigger.

The term may be considered derogatory, reflecting stereotypes of African-American, Black British and White culture (when used as synonym of White trash). The wannabe connotation may be used pejoratively, implying a failed attempt at cultural appropriation by a white subject. It is also sometimes used in a racist manner, not only belittling the person perceived as "acting black", but also demeaning black people and culture, by proxy.

Most, however, use the term neutrally, or as a light joke, without any racism intended. It has also been used as a self-description by proponents of a "wigger" subculture.[2]

Historically, the term "White Nigger" has been used in Northern Ireland to refer to the Roman Catholics,[3] and also to Irish Catholic immigrants to the United States and their descendants. Today, the term may be considered derogatory to Irish-Americans.[citation needed] In another use of the term, Pierre Vallières's work White Niggers of America refers to French Canadians.[4]


The phenomenon of white people adopting stereotypical black mannerisms, speech, and apparel – which in the general case is called allophilia – has appeared in several generations since slavery was abolished in the Western world. The concept has been documented in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia and other white-majority countries. An early form of this was the white negro in the jazz and swing music scenes of the 1920s and 1930s; as examined in the 1957 Norman Mailer essay, "The White Negro." It was later seen in the Zoot suiter of the 1930s and 1940s; the hipster of the 1940s; the beatnik and the blue-eyed soul of the 1970s; and the hip hop of the 1980s.


A 2011 class-action lawsuit in the United States District Court for Minnesota alleged that the administration at a predominantly-white high school showed a "deliberate indifference" in allowing a group of students to hold a homecoming event called "Wigger Day", including "Wigger Wednesday" and "Wangsta Day", since at least 2008. A plaintiff named Quera Pruitt sought declaratory judgment and $75,000 in punitive damages from the defendants for creating a racially hostile environment.[5] On July 24, 2012 the parties settled out of court, with Pruitt awarded $90,000.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Bernstein, Nell: Signs of Life in the USA: Readings on Popular Culture for Writers, 5th ed. 607
  2. ^ Wimsatt, William Upski. "Wigger: Confessions of a White Wannabe". Chicago Reader. Retrieved 2012-07-07. 
  3. ^ The IRA 12th impression, Tim Pat Coogan, page 448, William Collins, Sons & Co., Glasgow, 1987
  4. ^ DePalma, Anthony (26 December 1998). "Pierre Vallieres, 60, Angry Voice of Quebec Separatism, Dies". New York Times (New York). Retrieved 21 September 2014. 
  5. ^ "Pruitt v Anderson, Borgen, Red Wing Public Schools et al". courthousenews.com. Retrieved February 23, 2012. 
  6. ^ http://dev1.republican-eagle.com/event/article/id/82818/publisher_ID/16/#sthash.HW1x8A0Z.dpufThe shool settled http://dev1.republican-eagle.com/event/article/id/82818/publisher_ID/16/

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