Men dressed in white T-shirts threaten protesters and commuters at Yuen Long MTR station on July 21. Picture: AFP
Lisa Lim
Opinion

Opinion

Language Matters by Lisa Lim

Triads and thugs: where the words come from and why ‘thug life’ philosophy isn’t what you think

  • After a mob of men dressed in white T-shirts brutally assaulted protesters and commuters in Hong Kong, the word “thug” has gained currency
  • It entered English in the 1800s, assuming a racial subtext in the 20th century

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Men dressed in white T-shirts threaten protesters and commuters at Yuen Long MTR station on July 21. Picture: AFP
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