By William Safire
Good information! America's grasp wordsmith moves back with a brand new choice of erudite, witty, provocative, occasionally barbed, often hilarious "On Language" columns. released in The long island instances and syndicated in additional than 300 different newspapers, those evaluations from the "Supreme court docket of present English Usage" hide every thing from the base line on tycoonese and the accesses
* of computerese to portmanteau phrases like televangelist and Draconomics (the language maven's personal plan for our bloated economy).
Although Safire makes an admirable case for adverbs and adjectives, advocates of sturdy verbs may be heartened to listen to that he additionally: pleads for the maintenance of the subjunctive temper; provides, sizzling off the school campus, the most recent lingo during which 'rents capacity mom and dad and yesterday's wimps are today's squids; decries the brevity-is-next-to-godliness literary university; bids farewell to anxiety (it's been changed through trendy stress or swangst); noodles over such weighty geopolitical questions as "when an intercept of a fighter is a buzz"; bemoans the lack of roughage to fiber; and rides herd over the language spoken in Marlboro Country.
More excellent news! Safire back spices his personal wit and knowledge with correspondence from Lexicographic irregulars, these zealous readers and letter writers who respond to his columns with compliment, scorn, corrections and nitpicks--anything to check wits with Super-maven.
If you may glance It Up and Take My be aware for It occupy favourite spots on your bookcase, then Language Maven moves Again belongs there too. in the event that they don't, then start with this Safire and paintings your method back.
* That's no longer a typo--that's a pun.
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Extra resources for Language Maven Strikes Again
Fashion, therefore, as an integral part of social mores, may accelerate the process of standardization. Unlike K, many of whose advocates actually saw it as an extension of AG, the official language of Greece today is not a parasite depending on AG for its existence: it is an autonomous language (just as traditional demotic was in its day) which is nevertheless free to use the resources of vocabulary provided by the ancient language. This is not to say, however, that all Greeks are satisfied with the linguistic situation that prevails today.
The following are examples of this phenomenon. σοκάκι σόκ ζέστη ξελέ 'alley' 'shock' 'heat' 'jelly' ( < T sokak) ( < F choc) ( < AG ξέω) ( There seem in fact to be two chief criteria which a standard language has to fulfil; codification (minimal variation in form) and elaboration (maximal variation in function) (Haugen 1966: 107). As far as the second of these is concerned, 'the definitive seal of approval as a fully recognized standard is dependent on the use of a language in two functions: fully official (governmental) and bellettristic' (Hall 1972: 150). Since SMG began to be used for all official purposes as recently as 1976, one cannot expect 14 THE M O D E R N GREEK LANGUAGE it to be totally standardized; codification will gradually come about as Greeks become more and more accustomed to using it for every form of communication.
There seem in fact to be two chief criteria which a standard language has to fulfil; codification (minimal variation in form) and elaboration (maximal variation in function) (Haugen 1966: 107). As far as the second of these is concerned, 'the definitive seal of approval as a fully recognized standard is dependent on the use of a language in two functions: fully official (governmental) and bellettristic' (Hall 1972: 150). Since SMG began to be used for all official purposes as recently as 1976, one cannot expect 14 THE M O D E R N GREEK LANGUAGE it to be totally standardized; codification will gradually come about as Greeks become more and more accustomed to using it for every form of communication.