Monday, March 06, 2006

Words...

The neologism, Quaalude, has been added to Wikipedia. This marks the first step (second step if we count Mr. Black's article, 'What is the relationship between a person within a literary text and a person outside of it?', as the first) to getting the new meaning recognised by the OED (Oxford English Dictionary).
Increasing the number of words we have to describe things seems to be a good idea to me. Treading away from the Orwellian dictum of 'Newspeak' where by the number of words is decreased can only be a good thing. Rather than restricting thought by limiting our vocabulary*, increasing the number of words will enable us to think more accurately and more completely.
As a result, we will be able to better understand ourselves and others.
In the paragons of prejudice that are right-wing newspapers (namely The Daily Mail) the vocabulary used by columnists is notably limited. The effect this has is to create generic groups of people (Asylum Seekers, Blacks, Queers, etc.) against which the readers can form prejudices. Inaccuracy in defining people is unacceptable if it leads to this.
Whilst I appreciate that ‘Quaalude’ is hardly a term which increases our understand of ‘ourselves and others’, it is still a positive first step. More of this please…

*Iris Murdoch (actually Judi Dench in the Richard Eyre film 'Iris')- 'If one doesn't have words, how does one think?'

I’m anticipating my argument being ripped apart and the article being edited (probably by Mr. Veins, Mr. Black will just give me (verbal) abuse). DO YOU'RE WURST!

6 Comments:

At 8:04 pm, Blogger Talyn said...

What would be next step to getting it in the OED?

 
At 1:44 am, Blogger Garth Wintergreen said...

Disguising oneself as an etymologist, which I believe involves removal of brain cells. Then using a crowbar to push apart the entries for 'qua, adv.' and 'quab, n1' before sliding the new meaning for 'Quaalude' in.

 
At 9:44 am, Blogger Talyn said...

Wow, that sounds like an adventure to me...

 
At 4:44 pm, Blogger Withiel said...

Well, editing articles if they are shit/poorly spelled is sort of my job.

 
At 6:22 pm, Blogger Talyn said...

Not if it makes us feel bad, sniffle.

 
At 3:02 pm, Blogger Sable X. Veins said...

Sorry, that Withiel comment was me on his computer.

Actually, it's still my job if it makes you feel bad, but I am also a Person.

 

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