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Thread: Ruined names: Tamerlane?
April 25th, 2013 04:09 PM #6
Tamerlan/e is ruined though Timothy isn't because Timothy is a common name associated with many, many other non-McVeigh Timothys, whereas the Boston bombing is the first time most people have heard Tamerlan/e.
Whether or not to change the name of yr character is yr call, of course. I would, but it's not my book. Considering how unusual the name is, I agree that it will probably be off-limits for baby naming and most other uses for a long time to come.Mrs. H.
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April 25th, 2013 04:14 PM #8
While for right now Tamerlan is known for the Boston bombing, I don't think the terror he wrought was on a large enough scale to taint the name forever. (Think Adolf, Sadam, Ivan, Osama...)
Someone (who is in the right location, around enough people who were affected by the bombing) might wince at hearing a baby named Tamerlane over the next few months, I doubt that once the child grows up he'd be connected to the nefarious bomber.
April 26th, 2013 04:41 PM #10
Ah, see, when I think Roman my mind doesn't immediately go to Roman Polanski. I can see how people might feel it was ruined though. Here in the US, I've known 5 men named Roman! So it doesn't feel all that uncommon to me.
I agree that it's a mix: an uncommon name in combination with some pretty bad behavior usually ruins the name. Charles and Timothy are obviously much too common to be ruined. Although I would be interested in seeing if either name dropped in the charts considerably after they were caught. I've known a couple Ivan's, (one a cousin and we pronounce his name ee-VAHN in Spanish) and the other was called Ivan the Terrible in school, but it was friendly teasing, if I remember correctly.
With Joseph Stalin, I think it helps that most people refer to him as Stalin, rather than Joseph or Joseph Stalin. Hitler is pretty interchangeable. Adolf, Hitler, and Adolf Hitler all seem to be common ways to refer to him. I guess the same could be said of McVeigh and Manson, since I've heard people refer to them by their surname only, though Manson could also refer to the musician. I've always been bothered by the glorification of Charles Manson. I find it strange when I see people walking around with his face on their t-shirts. That's another subject though.
I agree completely that it's largely dependent on how many associations the culture has with the name, which is why Tamerlan/e worries me. It's such a wonderful name, so I hope it isn't ruined.
In regards to my character, I may edit some of what his religious order does, or I may not. I'm going to sit on it for a few months. I do mostly refer to him as Tam, which will help I hope. And then again, the likelihood of this ever getting published much less read by the general population isn't likely, so it's probably a moot point. Just one I was interested in.
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April 26th, 2013 05:23 PM #12Senior Member
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As someone who objects to the way media obsesses, almost idolizes, over these committers of horrible crimes: I had no idea his name was Tamerlan/e. I don't know anything about him, and I don't want to know anything about him. I know many people disagree, but I just can't help but feel that when I watch/read about the criminals behind things like this, I'm giving them the notoriety they sought. So I choose not to.
So for me, at least, no. The name Tamerlan/e isn't ruined.
This is an interesting topic, and it does make me wonder why some names are okay and some aren't. It's been several years now, but I remember watching a film about a little girl named Osama and reading that the filmmakers chose the name specifically to show that its just a name and we shouldn't fear names, or something like that (reminds me of Voldemort lol).I hope to be a mom one day. For now I enjoy being a name lover.
My apologies for any typos; i post from my mobile phone.
April 27th, 2013 05:57 PM #14Junior Member
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Too soon to tell.
That being said I don't see anyone in the US using it in the near future, but it's never been popular here anyways. It's common for names with bad associations to current events to drop in popularity. Hurricane Katrina caused the name Katrina to take a hit, however last year it was not far outside the top 1000. The combination of Hurricane Sandy and the Sandy Hook shooting ruined Sandy, however that name hasn't been popular for years either.
Outside the United States Tamerlan might not be affected, this attack was pretty much a US event. People outside the country might not get such terrible associations from the name.