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Symbolism of colors

Posted by Smokey Stover on October 22, 2004

In Reply to: Symbolism of colors posted by Lewis on October 18, 2004

: : : : : : : : What is the meaning of the phrase "dark look" in a sentence like: "He gave us a dark look"?

: : : : : : : An unfriendly facial expression, perhaps one of suspicion or hostility.

: : : : : : I think a 'black look' would be more usual in the UK, which has the same meaning.

: : : : : : DFG

: : : : : I think St. Tony of Islington (our glorious Prime Minister over here in the UK for those who don't know) would frown on a usage of "black look" as being subconsciously racist, hence "dark look" might be less liable to offend the politicallycorrectistas - cf. "chalkboard". St. Tony may even have passed a law re the above (I wouldn't know, since I invariably ignore what the little squeaking glove-puppet has to say) - but it's a fair bet that if he hasn't, he will. How else is he to keep his loathsome lawyerly wife in £3.6 million mansions in central London, unless by extending the rich pickings available to her as counsel of choice (richly paid out of the public Legal Aid purse of course) for anyone bringing a totally illogical and groundless action?

: : : : Do I detect a certain amount of dissatisfaction with Her Majesty's First Minister and his learnéd wife?

: : : : DFG

: : : Here is an article on the symbolism of colors. And it is by Ms. Whyte. (I am not making that up.)
: : :

: : Dark and black are the colours (except black of course isn't really a colour - it's a tone, and dark is a shading) we have always used to represent all things bad or evil. Who wears the black hats in the cowboy movies? The bad guys. When we speak of dark or black humour, it's a kind of nasty, sour, evil,sick or bitter humour. The grim reaper always wears black. But black means sexy too. eg. Doesn't every woman have a 'little black dress' for seduction purposes??? And white is supposed to be the pure colour. Now we all know that such theories can be abused. eg. Technically I'm not supposed to wear white in my third wedding - but hey, if I want to I will. This is just a generic association of ideas.

: : I'd be curious to know if there's any way to delve back far enough to work out how this originated. Maybe it stems from the darkness and uncertainty of night. Any ideas?

: I go along with the un-PC brigade when it comes to the use of the word 'black' - it would be much better to be more accurate in discussing skin tone (if necessary) than redefining the use of a colour.

: Black is the 'colour' of darkness.
: We should not have called darker-skinned people 'black' - for a start it is not accurate - even the darkest skinned people cannot be literally 'black' and secondly it objectifies people based on skin pigmentation - which is also stupid when applied to 'white' people - you might get a very pale albno and a very dark (sub-Saharan) African, but you'll still not have 'black and white'.

: I'd have thought we were all "wood-coloured" .

: anyhow - St Tony's wife works for Matrix Chambers and whilst they do some work on legal aid, they are well down the list of earning per barrister. in a recent survey they just scraped into the top 50 (I think) on a fees/barrister basis.
: she'd have done rather better specialising in banking/pensions/corporate take-overs/competition.
: people do not specialise in the likes of human rights law for the money. saying that she'll doubtless earn a lot more than Tony (until he leaves office), when he can become the equivalent of a Tony-crony and 'earn' much for little.

I read Ms. Whyte's little essay on the symbolism of colors. Very nice, but why so shy about explaining the symbolism of brown nosers? It was also interesting to hear the invective directed at Tony Blair. Knowing what I know about American presidents, I'd be extremely glad to have someone as intelligent as Mr. Blair at our helm. He could be as rotten as his worst enemies think, and still be a breath of fresh air over here. SS