Our Favorite Word?… Girl

January 10, 2012 ‐ By

I was surprised to find that there were quite a few women who took issue with the title of BET’s “Black Girls Rock” program. I know, I know feminism has affected us. (And there’s nothing wrong with that.) Technically and biologically we are women and deserve to be recognized as such; but for many black women, girl is a term of endearment, one of the milder ones in the black community. I know that personally I address close associates, friends and family (of any race) by this moniker. When my grandmother was still living she got a real kick out of the fact that when one of our late night conversations got good to me, I’d call her girl too. It’s my word…our word. Yes, we’re grown. Yes, we’re women but when it gets real, when we get comfortable, you can be a woman and a girl all at the same time.



Girl, stop!

Even if you don’t use this phrase, surely after hanging out with us here at Madame Noire, you know what it means. The phrase “girl, stop” expresses distaste for action or idea. Here we like to use it when referring to celebrities who’ve gone too far– or not far enough– with their fashion choices. I like to use this one when one of my friends is talking out the side of her neck. Typically this one is used in a playful matter.

MadameNoire Video

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  • Smacks_hoes

    Dnt say any of these words except “boo” when I’m mocking my friends….

  • Jessicapbutler

    they forgot Girl, Boo!

  • Jessicapbutler

    they forgot Girl, Boo!

  • girl boo!!!

  • Ahahaha I live in Belgium , i’m black and i use the same sentence but in French ahaha !!! It’s like ‘ heeey meuf tu sais pas quoi or hey meuf j’tai pas dis …..

  • Sorry i speak french so i don’t understand the word ‘ Werk’ what’s it mean ?

    • It’s like yeaaaah i’m beautiful , i rock ?

      • Guest

        Pretty much, it’s like telling someone to be fierce or do their thing.  It’s pretty much an affirmation.

  • MIA

    someone is always criticizing us! Girl bye!

  • Call me “Girl” til my dying day!  I’m a strong, independent woman but I’ll always be a girl! 

  • Erica

    I’m from the Caribbean,can’t relate, but I see it as black Americans lingo.

  • Robinf808

    You forgot “Hey, girl! Hey!”

  • Guest

    Just curious…why are these sayings being “broken down”? I mean we know what they mean. Why are we going over this? I’m honestly not trying to be rude, and it just may be the conspiracy theorist in me, but who is the article really for? It’s like it’s subtly being translated for somebody else. I don’t know, I just don’t get the point of this.

  • Guest

    So often that when I was younger I used to say it to guys. Awkward.

    • vwells1

      Yes!! I slip up and call my dad girl all the time! Lol

  • Zim

    Or simply: Grrrrrrlll!

  • Enjoyceinglife

    Ok, so I use girl…pretty regularly. And I don’t have a problem with it. I do have a younger friend who made conscious decision last year not to use girl. She blogged about it. And while I understand her mindset, I just don’t feel its such a dangerous word unless it it’s being used in a negative fashion to demean or disrespect a grown woman. Girl is comfortable for me & I’m usually using it with one of my girls. Like you, I’ve been in such relaxed states sometimes that I’ve slipped & called my mother girl – which I think amuses her. There are lots words & phrases that I’ve decided not to use, but girl one be one of them.