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Izzy
'Chav' is a word I've heard once or twice, and I never really knew what it meant. Then I asked some of my friends, and they didn't know either. Then I asked a kid that said it, and he was like " I dunno, I heard Donny say it". So I asked Donny, and he was like "I heard it on the internet". So if someone could tell me what it means, that'd be good.

-Izzy
markslut
A chav is basicly a commom thug*, usually seen wearing tracksuits and burberry (which incidently is owned by the chav shop chain Argos)

http://www.chavscum.co.uk/ for more information and pictures


*Not all are thugs - a nice one fitted my CD Changer, but most of the ones mentioned here are unfortunatly thugs.
Izzy
OK, thanks for telling me.
-Izzy
Mata
We had a quite in-depth discussion of chavs here:

http://www.matazone.co.uk/forums/index.php?showtopic=13671

There's a lot more to chavs than petty thuggery. There's petty crime too! wink.gif

Personally I think they're one of the most interesting social movements in recent society. Sort-of like punk in some ways, but where punk rejected capitalism, 'chav' embraces it as a signifier of self-worth. It's really quite fascinating stuff.
Icey
I think 'Chav' is only an English thing.

How I would like to burn them all alive.
Mata
There are two main perspectives that you can take:

1: they add nothing productive to society so should all be locked in metal boxes until the banging stops

2: they are an indicator of a larger malaise throughout the social structure, from welfare to the distribution of wealth, the heirarchical system of power, and the adoration of heroes for 15 minutes.

Change the society and you'll have no need of chavs, but kill all the chavs and they'll be like the clowns: for every one that you kill then another must take its place.
Phyllis
QUOTE (Icey @ Mar 21 2006, 06:22 AM)
I think 'Chav' is only an English thing.
*

Well, British, I think, isn't it? I saw a couple of chavs when I went to Scotland, and they were definitely not English. But you're right in assuming that we don't have an equivalent word in the US. We do have slightly chavvy types, but it's nowhere near as big here.

My first encounter with a chav was a memorable one. moop and I were waiting in the car for snoo and their mom. This girl was standing next to the car, talking to a group of people. I guess the heels were hurting her feet, because she felt the need to lean on the car we were sitting in. So her bottom was pressed against my window. Lovely. I turned to moop and whispered "Are they chavs?" I thought they were, but I wasn't quite sure. I was horribly tempted to tap on the window or honk the horn, but I resisted.

The ones near where I stayed the majority of the time I was in England vaguely remind me of some of the boys I went to school with...who would ride around our tiny little town, rap music blaring, thinking they were tough. I really would like to drop them in the middle of Harlem as a kind of experiment to see how they fared...but that would be mean.
little_bear
'Chavs' have a variety of names, across the country. In Scotland, for example, they're called Neds, whereas on Merseyside/Liverpool they're called Scallies.

My experience of chavs has been varied. On the whole, aside from one nasty incident where I was mugged and stabbed in the shoulder by two bastards, I've found them to be thoroughly nice guys. Even gone out drinking with some of 'em. I recognise that the majority are utter yobs, but there are a minority who're pretty sound IMO.
Phyllis
QUOTE (little_bear @ Mar 21 2006, 09:29 AM)
'Chavs' have a variety of names, across the country.  In Scotland, for example, they're called Neds, whereas on Merseyside/Liverpool they're called Scallies.
*

Ohh right. I forgot about that. But if I called someone a chav in Scotland, they'd know what I meant. Here...not as likely. We don't have any equivalent word that I've been able to think of.
FeralPolyglot
I haven't ever heard the word before either. No worries, devils_daughter.

So is it like the skeevy kind of people you see looming about in cities' ghettoes and slums?
Izzy
^ From what I've been able to make out so far, I think so. (If that's right, indeed KILL ALL THE CHAVS)

-Izzy
Izzy
QUOTE (Mata @ Mar 21 2006, 11:57 AM)
Change the society and you'll have no need of chavs, but kill all the chavs and they'll be like the clowns: for every one that you kill then another must take its place.
*


I think the thing with all the clowns dieing was pretty cool, but if someone does kill all the chavs, how could the person that hated them so much become a chav?

-Izzy
Phyllis
QUOTE (FeralPolyglot @ Mar 21 2006, 10:40 AM)
So is it like the skeevy kind of people you see looming about in cities' ghettoes and slums?
*

I don't know if that's really an accurate comparison. There's a kind of attitude that, from what I've heard, chavs seem to have quite often. I don't know that we really have something that is a similar group that identifies with one another like that in the US (though obviously there are arrogant idiots everywhere - they just aren't unified here).

Chavs do seem to try to emulate the culture of places like that, though. But they do it so badly that it's almost painfully hilarious. There is a UK version of "Pimp My Ride." The host...my lord. I just want to kick him in the head.

But I wouldn't say "Kill all the chavs," personally. I guess I'm just not that into killing a group of people for no real reason...silly me.
little_bear
QUOTE (candice @ Mar 22 2006, 01:26 AM)
But I wouldn't say "Kill all the chavs," personally.  I guess I'm just not that into killing a group of people for no real reason...silly me.
*

My sentiments exactly.

There have always been 'chavs', just in different forms. Yobs, hooligans, you name it.

The closest American equivalent I can think of would be "Wigger", expect that isn't an exact comparison because the 'Chav' isn't deeply rooted in black culture. It's a very British 'institution'.
Mata
QUOTE (devils_daughter @ Mar 21 2006, 11:49 PM)
QUOTE (Mata @ Mar 21 2006, 11:57 AM)
Change the society and you'll have no need of chavs, but kill all the chavs and they'll be like the clowns: for every one that you kill then another must take its place.
*

I think the thing with all the clowns dieing was pretty cool, but if someone does kill all the chavs, how could the person that hated them so much become a chav?
*

My theory runs that they perform a function in society. They work as a barometer of the lowest acceptable behaviour. As LB says, there have always been someone like chavs around, but only in the last few years has it got to the point where they are a significant demographic group (albeit one that it often defined in the eyes of the viewer). To me this indicates that as a society we are doing something wrong.

I think that if you got rid of everyone who is currently 'a chav' then soon you find another group taking on the role of social barometer instead. True, it wouldn't be a literal instant swap, but social structures have a way of settling into heirarchies, which means that there will always be someone on the bottom, and they will always react to power in ways that are defined by social views of them. Society has created chavs, so if you got rid of them, the factors would still all be there to make more.
Clatterpop
I'm curious as to the origins of the word 'chav'. I seem to remember hearing somewhere that it was an acronym for 'council housed and violent'. Has anyone heard of any other explanation?
Witless
Sorry clatterpop... this isn't an answer to your question, it's another question.

What I find confusing isn't chavs.. people that ending up in a similar social bracket has ended up happing through time and space across the earth.
What confuses me the most.. is people that choose to be chavs. I've met people from quite good middle class families that seem to just well throw on their tracksuits, and baseball caps, and hang out with friends on street corners smoking.

Watch the film Human traffic, there's a character exactly like that, there. He's the son of a police chief in a pretty nice house etc. But he seems to enjoy and settle into a lot of the chav stereotypes all the same.
That could be just a rebelling thing too I guess.
Usurper MrTeapot
I thought the word chav came from a derogitory word used for Gypsies in the Ukraine or something. I think it means child or something over there.
Mata
As always, Wikipedia provides us with the answer, while also the creeping suspicion that it's not 100% trustworthy:

http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/chav
Wytukaze
Tut tut, sir. Wikipedia != Wiktionary. Most Wikipedians have as much to do with Wiktionary as you do, despite the fact that they are owned by the same organisation.

Aside from that pedantry, what the page indicates there is that no one really knows. It's a mystery word, that appeared in the mainstream very recently. To address clatterpop's question directly, acronyms are almost always the least likely source of any word. "OK" is another word of mystery origin, but theories that it was an abbreviation of the humorous "oll korrekt" stand up better than many other acronym explanations, as the word still feels like an acronym to the majority of us. And "OK" is attested from over a century ago, while, as I said, chav is rather recent.

The most commonly cited etymology is the "charva"/"chavi" one, but the "chaff" one and the ones related to placenames might work, especially if we find more localised, older usage of the word some day.

</linguistic nonsense>
I_am_the_best
I've heard that chav was an acronym for Council House And Violent several times and used to believe it but I have just realised a possible connection leading me to believe that perhaps the word is a derrivation from an ancient word. You see, the Hebrew word for chav (yes, you get them in Israel too) is chachachim (pronounced cha-cha-khim); the -im being the pluralization and the repetition of 'cha' simply because it's slang and so sounds more catchy. This leaves one with 'chach' which is pretty similar to 'chav'. Hell, maybe it's just a load of rubbish.
Wytukaze
Hmm. An interesting theory. It won't be a "derivation from an ancient word" though, as English doesn't descend from Hebrew. It could easily be a more recent borrowing, or, considering the soundchanges, a somewhat older borrowing. (A more normal English transformation of the sound you described would be "chack".)

The key would be to find out the literal meaning of "chachach", and what roots it has in the language, to see if it could be a reasonable candidate. Doubtless someone with better resources will notice it at some point. There are plenty of amateur etymologists out there.
I_am_the_best
I'm not suggesting that an ancient word is from Hebrew. I think I had bad word choice, I meant something along the lines of Latin or Greek. since Hebrew is made up from several languages, primarily Arabic but there are some Spanish pronunciations and derivations in there too so I'm guessing it's a possibility.
Izzy
Does anybody else think that words like 'chav' should be in the dictionary....so someone could just look them up and know what they meant?

(why must everybody on matazone use big, confusing words?!?)

-Izzy
little_bear
QUOTE (devils_daughter @ Mar 23 2006, 10:41 PM)
Does anybody else think that words like 'chav' should be in the dictionary....so someone could just look them up and know what they meant?

(why must everybody on matazone use big, confusing words?!?)

-Izzy
*

As far as I know, the word "Chav" is already in the English Dictionary.

EDIT: Over here in the UK, that is of course.
Izzy
QUOTE (little_bear @ Mar 23 2006, 04:44 PM)
QUOTE (devils_daughter @ Mar 23 2006, 10:41 PM)
Does anybody else think that words like 'chav' should be in the dictionary....so someone could just look them up and know what they meant?

(why must everybody on matazone use big, confusing words?!?)

-Izzy
*

As far as I know, the word "Chav" is already in the English Dictionary.

EDIT: Over here in the UK, that is of course.
*



They should add it to the our English dictionary(in America) and other words that are scarcly used and when someone does hear them, they never know what they mean.
Phyllis
QUOTE (little_bear @ Mar 23 2006, 01:44 PM)
As far as I know, the word "Chav" is already in the English Dictionary.

EDIT: Over here in the UK, that is of course.
*


It's in the dictionary in the US as well.
Astarael
QUOTE (devils_daughter @ Mar 23 2006, 04:41 PM)
Does anybody else think that words like 'chav' should be in the dictionary....so someone could just look them up and know what they meant?

(why must everybody on matazone use big, confusing words?!?)

-Izzy
*


People have already addressed the point about dictionaries, but a lot of use longer words because they get our points across more precisely than shorter but easier ones. Dictionary.com can be helpful in a pinch if you don't understand something. smile.gif
greymullet
QUOTE (little_bear @ Mar 21 2006, 05:29 PM)
Even gone out drinking with some of 'em.  I recognise that the majority are utter yobs, but there are a minority who're pretty sound IMO.
*


I tend to only classify someone as a chav based on the way they behave, rather than what they wear, otherwise I'm no better than them i.e. if they're not violent and bigoted then they're not chavs.


QUOTE (devils_daughter @ Mar 21 2006, 11:49 PM)
QUOTE (Mata @ Mar 21 2006, 11:57 AM)
Change the society and you'll have no need of chavs, but kill all the chavs and they'll be like the clowns: for every one that you kill then another must take its place.
*


I think the thing with all the clowns dieing was pretty cool, but if someone does kill all the chavs, how could the person that hated them so much become a chav?

-Izzy
*




That's like saying a legal execution doesn't make the executioner a murderer. Sort of. If anyone can explain what I just said I'd appreciate it.
Izzy
^ Technicly, it doesn't make them a murderer. Just an executer. Kinda. ok, now you confused me.... dry.gif
Daria
They take someone's life- I doubt the person whose life it is really wants it to be taker. Ergo, murder?
pgrmdave
Technically, murder is the unlawful killing of someone. Since an executioner is not breaking the law, he is not a murderer.

(I actually thought he would be, then I looked up the definition of murder on dictionary.com)
Astarael
Precisely. The executioner would have committed homicide, killed a person, or ended a life, but not committed murder.
Calantyr
QUOTE (Astarael @ Apr 8 2006, 10:10 PM)
Precisely. The executioner would have committed homicide, killed a person, or ended a life, but not committed murder.
*


Legally it wouldn't be homicide either, as that would involve killing 'in a criminal frame of mind'.

As agents carrying out the legal proclamation of the courts it's kinda mutually exclusive.
greymullet
Point is, it's only a technicality.
oscarhilton
"Council House And Violent"
Calantyr
"Cybernetic Hardware Augmented Villain."
Daria
QUOTE (oscarhilton @ Apr 9 2006, 10:19 AM)
"Council House And Violent"
*

heh biggrin.gif
"aaaaaaaaaah! Look out! It is a violent council house! Damn Maggie! I thought she had tried to get rid of them all!"
oscarhilton
^ Haha!! Aaaaghh!! Itís firing its low budget furniture at us!
Daria
Hey, I lived in a council house once! Our furniture wasn't low budget...
It was haunted though, and we only lived there because we were on a "list" and the lady who lived there before us died.
I had her room.
trunks_girl26
QUOTE (greymullet @ Apr 8 2006, 07:34 PM)
Point is, it's only a technicality.
*


Well, no, not really.

Murder:

1. The unlawful killing of one human by another, especially with premeditated malice.

See, in being an executioner, you eliminate the premeditated malice bit, which, though it's not required, is quite a big deal. The mindset of an executioner and a murderer is completely different, and somehow I doubt that if executioners were made the same as murderers (as in, would have the same consequences, but still keeping the execution itself legal) there'd be anywhere near as many people willing to do so. (willing being used loosely here, as I doubt too many are thrilled with having to execute people)
bryden42
QUOTE
Hey, I lived in a council house once!

I grew up in leigh park in portsmouth which (at the time) was the largest council estate in europe (or so i'm led to believe) our furniture sucked smile.gif
Izzy
An executioner isn't unlawfully killing someone, he's just killing them for his job. *flinches* I don't see how anyone could choose that as a career...Do you think they go home guilty knowing that they just ended a life? blink.gif
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