I’ll be interested in the results. I referenced this conundrum in a post last week.
A former co-worker, here in Northwest Arkansas, was adamant on this: He calls himself an Arkansawyer, but he calls me an Arkansan. The difference? I didn’t grow up here. My family heritage does not involved Arkansas. He did and his does. He is proud to call himself an Arkansawyer.
Then again, members of Leadership Benton County, which I was part of in 2005-2006, were firm that terminology such as Arkansawyer only helped entrench the rest of the country’s low opinion of Arkansas, which is apparently not to different from the Arkansas depicted in Beverly Hillbillies.
Many of the residents of Northwest Arkansas (an average of 1,196 people move to Northwest Arkansas every month) are not originally from here, and they tend to fight the negative stereotypes.
Identifying the residents of other (mainly Midwestern) states where I’ve lived is not an issue; the populous agrees. Is this a situation unique to Arkansas, United States?
I call myself an Arkansan: This term follows the conventions used in many other states for one, which makes it the logical choice. I don’t really like the term Arkansawyer, or Arkie, particularly in formal contexts, because they seem so informal and uneducated.