Slang terms have been around as long as people have been communicating with each other. What’s offensive and what isn’t? Slang itself is a very informal means of communication and has varied origins. For instance, certain slang terminology will change with geographic locations, and it can be hard to keep up with it.
Staying completely up-to-date with slang is probably not possible as the birth of slang terminology usually revolves around specific locations, cultures, and even major cultural events. So, when you hear something you’ve probably never heard before, it’s always a good idea to figure out what exactly it is that you are hearing before you repeat it. A word or phrase of slang might be innocent enough in certain environments and settings, but when spoken out of term or context can be highly offensive.
What Does PAWG Mean?
PAWG, as a term, is most often associated with the phrase ‘Phat Ass White Girls’. This is a strong example of a piece of slang language that, in short, is a very harmful and offensive term. The acronym, PAWG, is based on the slang word for ‘fat’, often spelled with a definitive ‘ph’ instead of the letter ‘f’. This is problematic for a couple of different reasons. First off, spelling the word ‘fat’ as ‘phat’ is most commonly associated with a sexual connotation of body image.
For example, the word fat is most often used to describe a particular body image and, in and of itself, already has negative connotations. So if someone were to describe a person as ‘fat,’ that would be inherently negative when terms like bigger, larger, or even plus-sized could be used instead.
Substituting the letter ‘f’ with ‘ph’ takes the term ‘Phat’ and puts an entirely new, more provocative twist. This will be used most often as a slang term for sexually objectifying a plus-sized individual. So now, pairing that into the entire phrase, ‘Phat Ass White Girl,’ you can see that this is a hyper-sexualized way of describing, and objectifying a woman.
Is PAWG a Sexist Term?
Is PAWG a sexist term? Again, the answer here is yes. This term is used to refer to the anatomy of a white woman at a desirable thickness. This implies a standard being set by this party whose sole intention is sexually objectifying that woman’s body, and the woman meets or exceeds that standard.
Body standards and expectations are a huge part of a sexist, misogynistic culture. These male-created and male-driven standards have nothing to do with a woman’s expectation or desire for her body and often place unrealistic standards on a woman. This can create toxic environments that seek to minimize or limit a woman’s sense of control over her body.
While PAWG may be a slang term used to compliment a woman’s physique, there is nothing innocent about it.
When Would You Use the Term PAWG?
PAWG is a harmful term that does not promote or empower women; that being said, as a writer, you may wonder when you can or would use it? The truth is, in polite or mixed conversation. This term is inflammatory and offensive. Therefore, even in private chat, it should be encouraged only to use terminology that is inclusive and non-offensive. However, the term can help create a profile of a character or situation.
For instance, if you were attempting to create a misogynistic character for fiction or even fabricating a conversation to drive a point home, this phrase would be instantly recognizable as sexist and misogynistic. So as a tool that can quickly set an atmosphere of misogyny, sexism, or associates a particular worldview or thought process.
The truth is, PAWG is an offensive and overly harmful term used to belittle women. While it can be used creatively in writing to set a stage or cue the audience to a character’s flaws, there is no scenario where a term like this would be acceptable in real life. Referring to women in derogatory ways that imply their bodies satisfy or exceed a male-sex-driven standard should have no place in modern society.
Slang terminology is a great way to help bring color, variety, and culture to your writing, but it needs to be used appropriately. In some instances, slang words and terms can be truly harmless and simply add an element of culture to your work. PAWG is an excellent example of why you should research what a term means and whether it is negative or positive before employing it.