Meaning of REFUSENIK in English

noun Also written refusnik (Politics) (People and Society) Colloquially, any person who has been refused official permission to do something or who has refused to follow instructions, especially as a form of protest. Etymology: A transferred sense of a word which was originally a partial translation of the Russian word otkaznik (itself made up of the stem of the verb otkazat' 'to refuse' and -nik, the agent suffix used in other English words such as beatnik and peacenik). When first borrowed into English, refusenik was used only in the specific sense of Russian otkaznik 'a Soviet Jew who has been refused permission to emigrate to Israel'. History and Usage: The plight of the Soviet refuseniks was first widely reported in the English-language press in the second half of the seventies and by the early eighties the word would have been familiar to the readers of most quality newspapers. By the mid eighties journalists had started to apply it in other contexts (in much the same way as other Russian borrowings such as glasnost and perestroika would later be applied in new and often trivial home contexts); perhaps under the influence of the punning style of newspaper headlines, or possibly just as a result of misunderstanding or forgetting the original import of the word (since many of the original refuseniks had been dissidents), they then began to use refusenik for the person who does the refusing rather than the one who is its victim, so that it became a milder synonym for dissident or protester. The 30 'refuseniks' who would not go to Wapping have been joined by 50 people. City Limits 10 Apr. 1986, p. 7 'Refuseniks' of Voyager lobby Hawke. Courier-Mail (Brisbane) 1987, p. 19 See also returnik

English colloquial dictionary, new words.      Английский разговорный словарь - новые слова.