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to wonder if peoples definition of Chav/Chavvy varies greatly

(192 Posts)
GirlOutNumbered Tue 12-Mar-13 22:04:19

This is a bit of a post about a post. Some one said that a girl in a barbour jacket would be chavvy. I have never, ever seen a Chav in a barbour jacket.

A chav down here is someone who wears a tracksuit most of the time and jeans with a polo shirt when going out on the town. The girls would wear tracksuit tucked into ugg style boots, the boys trainers.

Whats a chav where you are?

Snoopingforsoup Wed 13-Mar-13 11:41:06

everlong you sound condescending, but then you know that.
Chav does mean different things to different people. I do make observations of types. The UK still has an ingrained class system which we can't seem to level. Therefore, 'Chav' is a way of describing a certain element of society, it is another word for 'oik' or 'scally' to my mind and I just can't compare it to a racial slur, because it's not generally used with hatred. There have always been definitions and terms used by different classes for different classes. Are you as offended by 'toff' for instance?

lrichmondgabber Wed 13-Mar-13 11:46:44

I dont use CHAV and people in Richmond dont seem to

whatagreatname Wed 13-Mar-13 11:47:44

I never use the term, it is horrible imo

everlong Wed 13-Mar-13 11:48:32

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

littlepeas Wed 13-Mar-13 11:53:41

One of my most well to do friends has that Barbour coat and wears Uggs. She is about as far away from a 'chav' as I can imagine. I don't think it is about what is worn, but rather how it is worn and by whom, iyswim. Lots of people wear Uggs because they are warm and comfortable, or Hunter wellies because they walk their dog in a muddy field and then happen to go to the pub afterwards without changing their shoes, for example. One of my dc has a name which I have seen referred to as 'chavvy' on here - it is not remotely chavvy on my dd as she is not a chav, it may well be chavvy on someone else. Clothes, names and where you live does now make you a chav - it is an amalgamation of many different things. I agree with whoever said that although it is difficult to define, you know it when you see it, in all its guises.

Snoopingforsoup Wed 13-Mar-13 12:05:51

Everlong I agree with what you've just said, but I don't know where I've been because where I'm based, 'Chav' is a term bandied around without hatred.
Maybe as I now see it's considered so derogatory, I'll rethink it.
I genuinely had no idea it was considered so offensive to some people.
I considered it the sort of lighthearted term that we would have used for say 'townies', 'ruffians', 'yobbo's', 'hoodies', 'ASBO'S', 'footie hooligans'. All describing a type but with a generalisation attached, but not the sort of term that was considered hugely offensive to anyone.
To be fair, I'm not a MN regular really, I picked up a few weeks ago looking for miscarriage info. and remembered the joy of AIBU so I should really have read all the posts before commenting perhaps. I should maybe stick to daytime TV confused

Snoopingforsoup Wed 13-Mar-13 12:08:10

Ditto 'yuppie', 'hoorah Henry', 'dotcommer'.
Are these unacceptable too?

BabyMakesTheBellyGoRound Wed 13-Mar-13 12:14:23

I'm a chav so gringrin .
I live on a council estate,used to push a bugaboo and my dh drives a bmw. I have a vw caravelle with tinted windows. Never mind that we work very hard for things.
I wonder is the labels thing (Barbour jackets,bugaboos,designer names),formally a way of displaying wealth now has no meaning at all. If a person seen to be working class can have the same things as upper middle classes then how can they be clearly defined.
I personally think it is better to have those lines blurred. I was recently chatting with a school mum who was complaining that her neighbours were letting out their house to a family on subsidised rent. Despite the fact that they hadn't moved in yet she had already decided that it was going to be hell,with the house getting trashed hmm . Little did she know she was talking to someone who was on subsidised rent and now had a council house and certainly never trashed anything.

everlong Wed 13-Mar-13 12:17:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GirlOutNumbered Wed 13-Mar-13 12:26:48

I really do think the meaning of the word though is different for many people. Perhaps that is why I don't think it is offensive. It really is a term to define a way of dressing round here.

However, reading this I can see how for some people it is a way of defining a certain type of person.

I just did the nursery run to pick up DS2. There is a guy there who also picks up his daughter, he is what I would call a chav. Tracksuit, baseball cap and trainers, but he is a lovely guy. Works hard and tries his best to bring up his kids well. The types of people that fight, scrounge, steal etc we would call scrots or scallays, not chavs..

ComposHat Wed 13-Mar-13 12:34:13

I just did the nursery run to pick up DS2. There is a guy there who also picks up his daughter, he is what I would call a chav. Tracksuit, baseball cap and trainers, but he is a lovely guy

I am puzzled why a grown woman with children of her own would feel the need to label another adult with such a negative term, based on the way he dresses. It is the kind of thing I would find immature in a 15 year old obsessed with high school cliques let alone someone with a child of their own.

VonHerrBurton Wed 13-Mar-13 12:36:39

Women that turn up (late and hungover) to watch their dc play football whilst talking unnecessarily loudly and swearing into their iPhone. They will be wearing hunter, pref pink twinkly, wellies, a Barbour jacket, have orange skin, loads of make up and hair and quite often a small Chihuahua/schitzu/bischon frise yapping away at their feet. Dog will be dressed up in something horrible.

Hate the word chav, but that's what it means to me. Most definitely not reserved for less well off people either. A huge shiny 4x4 normally owned and 4 holidays a year to Dubai, Tenerife, marbella and a cruise.

everlong Wed 13-Mar-13 12:40:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

everlong Wed 13-Mar-13 12:44:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DancesWithWoolEnPointe Wed 13-Mar-13 12:47:14

I have wellies that cost £10 from shoezone, I love that this makes me classy wink

GirlOutNumbered Wed 13-Mar-13 12:47:42

You are not reading my posts. We call chavs people who wear track suits and baseball caps. That's his choice of clothes.
See this is what I am saying. The term chav does not dictate what kind of person he is, just how he dresses. This is my point!

In this neck of the woods, it is used the same way we may use 'hippy' or 'emo'.

Can you see why I asked this question now.

Chav means very different things to different people.

Snoopingforsoup Wed 13-Mar-13 12:48:30

ComposHat maybe a little harsh on OP, Chav is in the Oxford Dictionary, though it is listed as informal and derogatory.
(I wish I knew how to copy and paste on this phone.)
If they acknowledge the word exists, then the word is being used whether you like it or not.
We all make judgements on how people look and behave whether we consciously acknowledge that or not. It's why we dress up for job interviews, wear a school uniform, and wear a wedding dress.

DancesWithWoolEnPointe Wed 13-Mar-13 12:54:29

coughs <adopts public speaking voice>

According to the Oxford Dictionary:
"chav - Pronunciation: /t&#643;av/

Definition of chav
British informal, derogatory
a young lower-class person typified by brash and loutish behaviour and the wearing of (real or imitation) designer clothes.

Derivatives: chavvy (adjective)

1990s: probably from Romany chavo 'boy, youth' or chavvy 'baby, child': sometimes said to have originated in Chatham, Kent, and to be a shortening of that name"

VonHerrBurton Wed 13-Mar-13 12:58:26

Everlong - you have to have all the elements I mention, not one or two. smile

Snoopingforsoup Wed 13-Mar-13 12:59:34

Applause dances
That's the proper definition. So if we go by that, it's loutish behaviour and designer/fake designer garb that makes a chav.
You get plenty of people fall within that definition, regardless of class or background, house or car - but I knew loutish and designer came into it.
I've never looked beyond that and am still surprised people find it so offensive. As I said above, I will think twice before using the word now I know it's steeped in controversy...

Snoopingforsoup Wed 13-Mar-13 13:02:56

I'm also delighted to be too old to be a Chav.
It clearly says 'young'.

DancesWithWoolEnPointe Wed 13-Mar-13 13:03:38

I also thought that grin

ComposHat Wed 13-Mar-13 13:08:05

You are not reading my posts. We call chavs people who wear track suits and baseball caps. That's his choice of clothes. See this is what I am saying

Can you see why I asked this question now.

Do you consider commas and question marks to be 'chavvy' as well?

I have read your posts, I just don't agree with them in any way shape or form. They are badly written and badly argued and go some way to confirm my belief that people who use the word 'chav' freely aren't very bright.

You can't take a word with widely accepted negative connotations and then arbitrarily re-define it. I have had this conversation with teenagers who think it is okay to use the phrase 'gay' to mean not very good, yet swear blind that it isn't homophobic to do so.

Chav means very different things to different people.

I still maintain it says that the use of the word 'chav' says more about the person using it than the person to which it is applied.

AKissIsNotAContract Wed 13-Mar-13 13:08:55

I have a feeling that in forty years time, that people will look back in horror at the way the word 'Chav' is casually flung about in everyday conversation (I am not taking the moral high-ground here, I have done it myself) in much the same way we look back at the abundance of 'Paki' and 'Coon' jokes on TV during the 1970s with a mixture of disbelief and horror.

One of the few groups in society it remains acceptable to be nasty about are white working class people, hence the popularity among small minded people to use the word 'chav'.

Bridgetbidet Wed 13-Mar-13 13:09:27

Never seen a chav in a Barbour eh?

Jade Goody and Jack Tweed wore Barbours, I rest my case.

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