Shouldn't we transition to calling countries by their names?

When I say, “by their names”, I mean the names they use to refer to themselves. Not necessarily the full official name, as those tend to be a mouthful, and often full of crap. But I have always wondered by we have our own names for foreign countries, even though we can pronounce their actual names well enough in most cases. I can say Espana, or Deutschland, or Nippon. Cote d’Ivore might give me a bit of a problem, but at least Ivory Coast is a literal translation. But I think I can handle Suomi.

Of course, other nations do it too, but it does seem to me that in an increasingly interconnected world, it would be a common courtesy to refer to people’s countries by the names they use for their countries, to the extent we can pronounce them well enough.

Agreed. Bharat should also be used. Emphasis on the last syllable.

I’m all for Turtle Island…

There’s plenty of countries where more than 1 language is spoken.

How do you pronounce Sverige anyway? Or Россия for that matter.

You can’t even spell it properly.

Magyarország might be a bit of a mouthful for “Hungary.” “Hrvatska” is a bit of a fun one for English speakers. I mean, sure you can use a butchered approximation in your local language, but I say stick with the endonyms.

Doesn’t Россия just say “Roos-i-ya” or approximately so?

Rah-SEE-ya, approximately.

And to address the OP - the Germanys and Croatias are there for the long haul, I suspect. More people say Belarus than Belorussia (or White Russia), and I think Cote d’Ivoire is winning over Ivory Coast as well. The newer the country, the more likely we attempt to use the local name, I think.

Straya, mate.

This is not necessary.

Are you offended by the Chinese calling America Měiguó or England Yīngguó?
Are you insulted by the French referring to les États-Unis and Royaume-Uni?

There are some exceptions, where the local people object to names that were given by colonial rulers and prefer local names to be used instead, but in general everyone should use country and city names in their own language.

Isn’t Cote d’Ivoire a French-launguage phrase anyway?

And who gets to pick what we call Antarctica?

Those bloody Romans - even being dead doesn’t stop them asserting their linguistic imperialism over all of us!

Shit, I meant exonyms. Exonyms!

They do it to us also, so at least it’s fair: United States in Spanish is/ en Español es Estados Unidos.

Finland is officially a bilingual country (Finnish & Swedish). Calling it “Finland” is calling it by it’s name.

That’s where you’re confused. You’re speaking English, and the English word for the country between Sweden and Russia is “Finland.” Its two neighbors are “Sweden” and “Russsia”* in English.

Objecting to it is like objecting to the fact we call an automobile a “car” while the French call it a “voiture.” You wouldn’t insist that we have to call a Peugeot a voiture because that’s what they call it in France, would you?
*Nowadays. Used to be the Soviet Union.

Once you’ve made the exception you add at the end there you’ve created a terrible situation. You’ve gone against all of English language history and mandated a massive change from the top and created or magnified an understanding that not using the endonym is offensive and then you’ve made a major exception. Now you’ve guaranteed to offend Norwegians whenever you speak about their country. Either you stick with Norway, which you’ve declared is undesireable, or you mangle Norge, because you can’t deal with pronouncing e’s at the end of words, or even worse you make it a soft g.

So now all Norwegians hate you, and speaking of Norwegians, what are you going to call them? And what are you going to call Frenchmen and Frenchwomen? Isn’t calling them French as insulting as calling Deutschland Germany or Norge Norway?

And are kids going to learn the old words, or are you just going to make any pre 21st-century book referring to other countries incomprehensible to new generations?

By all means to adjustments here and there, but a sweeping reform is dumb.

Spanish actually has a greater tendency for translating (and transliterating) geographic names than English does. While we refer to the Mexican states of Nuevo Leon and Baja California Sur in English, they refer to the US states of Nueva Jersey and Dakota del Norte in Spanish.

I agree that there is no good reason to change the names that we refer to countries by in English. I doubt there is any country in the world where it’s the practice to refer to other countries by the names they call themselves.

I don’t feel strongly one way or the other. I am somewhat confused at the topic, though, because I had thought that the increasing practice was to use “native” placenames. Beijing for Peking. Myanmar for Burma. Any number of names other than the ones I learned for Indian cities.

Personally, the changing of a name sorta makes me pay less attention to such foreign locations. Being of a certain age, I have a frame of reference. If I see an unfamiliar name, I have to decide whether I will go through the effort of looking up what archaic name I am familiar with - and I do not all of the time. Of course, younger people who know only the new name will not face that issue.

I also find the pronunciation of non-English words by English speakers curious. For example, someone will be talking standard American English, then when they hit a Spanish word or placename, they roll their "r"s like crazy. Many English words come directly from foreign languages, but for the most part, they are pronounced as English words. Is more or less “respect” conveyed if we spell the name as the foreign country wishes, but mispronounce it?