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Poll #2: Counting worlds

Which of the following statements is most true for you? (Note: Europe *includes* the British Isles for the sake of this poll.)

I am from Europe & "First World" IS synonymous with "Old World"
2(2.2%)
I am from Europe & "First World" is NOT synonymous with "Old World"
54(60.7%)
I am NOT from Europe & "First World" IS synonymous with "Old World"
0(0.0%)
I am NOT from Europe & "First World" is NOT synonymous with "Old World"
33(37.1%)


Feel free to say you're from Europe if you feel living there for a while/being raised by at least one European relative had a major effect on your relevant use of language.

Apropos of a couple comments by la_marquise_de_ on jimhines's lj.
The lazy use of 'First World' throws everything on Europe. You guys over that side of the Atlantic are the New World. And while I know that many people forget this -- and the whole world counting thing is deeply, deeply flawed and patronising and I dislike it hugely -- every once in a while I get British about it and find myself muttering 'Own your own issues, don't just blame us over here' at USians on the internets.

and
But to Europeans, it looks like us, rather than you, because here, you're the New World (2nd World), we're the Old or First World.

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Comments

(Deleted comment)
frumpo
Jul. 21st, 2011 12:35 pm (UTC)
Yes, this. I'm from Europe and am happy with 'Old World', 'New World' and 'Third World' but confused by 'First World' and 'Second World'.
heleninwales
Jul. 22nd, 2011 08:21 pm (UTC)
I first heard the term in the late 60s/early 70s through the charity fund raising campaign Third World First. As used back then, the First World was the rich developed nations (UK, Europe, US and possibly Japan), the Second World was the USSR and Soviet Bloc and the Third World was Africa, India and probably South America.

Of course nearly 50 years on, the categories are all changed and we have the new terminology like the BRICs countries and to be honest, the only reference to 'First World' I hear nowadays is from Americans talking about 'First Word problems'.