Precise definitions of «bussin», «chitterlings» and «cakewalk» will be distributed to the world in 2025 with a new dictionary published by Oxford University Press.

Last year, Oxford University Press revealed its plan to publish the “Oxford Dictionary of African-American English”, a completely unrivaled list. During a recent online presentation, those linked to the post revealed that they have already selected 100 words to include in their dictionary and have their sights set on the post in March 2025. according to The New York Times

Below, find 10 of the definitions and etymologies included in the soon-to-be-published dictionary revealed by the Times.

  • business (adjective and participle): 1. Especially describing the food.: tasty, delicious. Also more generally: impressive, excellent. 2. Description of a party, event, etc.: busy, crowded, lively. (Variant forms: bussing, bussin’.)
  • grill (noun): A removable or permanent dental covering, usually made of silver, gold, or other metal and often inlaid with precious stones, worn as jewelry.
  • Promised land (n.): A place perceived as where enslaved people, and later African-Americans in general, can find refuge and live in freedom. (Etymology: a reference to the Biblical story of the Jewish people seeking freedom from Egyptian slavery.)
  • chitterlings (n. plural): A dish made from pork intestines that are typically boiled, fried, or stuffed with other ingredients. Occasionally also pork tripe as an ingredient. (Variant forms: chinchulins, chinchulins, chinchulins, chinchulins.)
  • kitchen (n.): The hair at the nape of the neck, which is usually shorter, curlier, and more difficult to style.
  • cakewalk (n.): 1. A contest in which blacks performed a stylized walk in pairs, usually judged by a plantation owner. The winner would receive some kind of cake. 2. Something that is considered easy to do, as in This job is a piece of cake.
  • Old School (adj.): Characteristic of early hip-hop or rap music that emerged in New York City between the late 1970s and mid-1980s, often including the use of couplets, funk samples and disco, and funny lyrics. It is also used to describe the music and artists of that style and time period. (Variant form: old school.)
  • pat (verb): 1. transitive. Touch (the foot) to the rhythm of the music, sometimes as an indication of participation in religious worship. 2. intransitive. Usually from the foot of a person: to play in rhythm with the music, sometimes to demonstrate participation in religious worship.
  • Aunt Hagar’s Children (n.): A reference to blacks collectively. (Etymology: Probably a reference to Hagar in the Bible, who, with her son Ishmael, was expelled by Sarah and Abraham [Ishmael’s father]and became, among some black communities, the symbolic mother of all Africans and African-Americans and of black femininity).
  • ring cry (n.): A spiritual ritual involving a dance where participants follow one another in the form of a ring, shuffling and clapping their hands to accompany the singing and chanting. The dancing and singing gradually intensify and often conclude with the participants exhibiting a state of spiritual ecstasy.

The public can contribute to the collection by submitting relevant words. here.

Henry Louis Gates Jr. is a literary critic and professor of African-American history at Harvard University. He spoke to the Times about his role as editor of the project, to which researchers and editors from Oxford Languages ​​and Harvard University will contribute. Hutchins Center for African and African American Research.

“Everyone has an urgent need for self-expression,” Gates explained in his interview, about the importance of word inclusion and representation in dictionaries. «You need to be able to communicate what you feel and what you think to other people in your speaking community… That’s why we reshaped the English language.»

According to Gates, the words will also be added to Oxford English Dictionary.

“That’s the best of both worlds,” he explained of the decision to include the words in the English language dictionary. “Because we want to show how black English is part of the larger English, as they say, that is spoken all over the world,” she said.