In past episodes we dealt with terms such as harass, harsh, hit, hurt, fatigue, kill, gall, gull, guile, beguile, assault, and assail. In Episode VI of Parallel Universe: Alternate Etymologies, the investigation will involve the tormenting and the humiliation of others through verbal ridicule, physical assault, or other more subtle methods of coercion known as Hazing. Hence this research will take this opportunity to investigate the roots of the word "Haze" in the English Language. 


Hazing is defined as harassment, abuse, or humiliation by way of initiation.

Today in western languages, hazing is often described as a ritualistic test, which may constitute harassment, abuse or humiliation with requirements to perform meaningless tasks; sometimes as a way of initiation into a social group. The term can refer to either physical (sometimes violent and ultimately leading to outright torture), or mental (possibly degrading) practices 

Hazing of one person by another is often used as a way of asserting power over others, and is a common form of oppression or abuse. In addition, often Hazing involving all kinds of ridicule, is deliberately designed to be humiliating.  * 1). 

In war, the enemy is generally demonized, with ethnic slurs being used to dehumanize them to the point where killing them becomes morally acceptable. 

By now, the photos of Abuw ghraib are hard to forget: A hooded and draped Iraqi stands on a box, his limbs attached to electrical wires, like some menacing, anonymous art project. Naked men configured in a macabre version of a cheerleading pyramid. An Iraqi prisoner being forced to simulate oral sex on another man. The recent images of torture at Abuw Ghraib prison were stunning not only because of their cruelty, but because of the peculiar, sexualized, almost theatrical manner in which the prisoners suffered. Perhaps most sickening, however, was the fact that all of this misery was accompanied by the grinning, gleeful faces of the American soldiers (both men and women) evidently proud of their work.

Indeed, the single most iconic image to come out of this abuse scandal—that of a hooded man standing naked on a box, arms outspread, with wires dangling from his fingers, toes and penis—may do a lot to undercut the administration's case that this was the work of a few criminal MPs. That's because the practice shown in that photo is an arcane torture method known only to veterans of the interrogation trade.

That's a standard torture. It's called 'the Vietnam.' But it's not common knowledge. Ordinary American soldiers did this, but someone taught them."  Just as the photos of naked prisoners terrified by attack dogs or humiliated before grinning female guards, actually portray "stress and duress" techniques officially approved at the highest levels of the government for use against terrorist suspects

The Abuw Ghraib report makes the same point about dehumanizing interrogations degenerating: “What started as nakedness and humiliation, stress and physical training, carried over into sexual and physical assaults. These techniques entailed a systematic softening up of prisoners through isolation, privations, insults, threats and humiliation—methods that the Red Cross concluded were "tantamount to torture


Haze (v.) The Oxford English Dictionary is uncertain about its true history. However, the known history of hazing dates back as early as the 1400’s. It has since pervaded in the society and has been visible in the military, in fraternities and sororities, college honor and secret societies, athletics, and in many student organizations. Recently it has garnered media attention as it has surfaced in high schools and even middle schools. Hazing has become more violent, more humiliating, and more sexual. Hazardous hazing is a virus that has attacked our youth and is spreading quickly

From an etymological view:  It is surmised to be derived from hawze: to insult, scold. (1678), from Middle French: haser "irritate, annoy" (1450), of unknown origin. 

Our investigation reveals surprisingly that some eight centuries earlier the term was already in use in Classical Arabic, from the trilateral root hz’.  See attached JPEGs below: 

This term means to deride, humiliate, scoff and ridicule. A example may be found in the following Qur’anic verse (Q.5, v. 57) 

O ye who believe ! take not those who hold your religion in derision and fun

The meaning of the word in the Classical Arabic language involves all kind of ridicule and humilaition, including both physical non-physical abuses. The more such terms are discovered and securely identified, the more the conclusive evidence of the influence of the Classical Arabic on Western European languages through cultural contact, is established .

To be continued



 * 1). Examples include swabbing the decks, cleaning the heads/toilets (e.g. with a toothbrush).# Servitude, such as waiting on others (as at frat parties) or various other forms of housework, often with pointless tests of obedience. An imposed piece of clothing, outfit, item or something else worn by the victim in a way that would bring negative attention to the wearer Infantile and other humiliating dress and attire (e.g., diapers, underwear (sometimes of the opposite sex; sometimes wet to make it see-through) or a condom on the head; cross-dress or fake breasts; wearing just a box or a barrel; bunny costume. . Victims are made to wear visible symbols, drawings or text (obscenities, instructions for abuse) on (under) clothing or on bare skin. They are painted on, tattooed on, written on or even shaved in (on head, legs, even pubic hair) In general the esence of  hazing is to deride and humiliate. 





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