On Language, or: What's in a Word?
"Language offers many ways of communicating and often the most expedient route is chosen. But this may not be the best way to address the visitor. Although convenient, terms like Native American, Hispanic or Latino may not be comfortable to your audience. It is important to be sensitive to what is accepted in your community, because more than vocabulary is at stake. It is a matter of identity. In these days of challenging accepted definitions, the best way to be sure you are using a term that is acceptable to your audience is to ask them honestly and openly. Visitors are delighted to assist the docent because they appreciate the museum's sensitivity to their language. Such effort will pay big dividends in the development of new audiences."