Words of the Year

Jesse Sheidlower (editor-at-large of the OED) writes about the Linguistic Society of America's annual convention - specifically, the 'fun' part where the American Dialect Society chooses the Word of the Year. The overall winner was "red state, blue state, purple state" - a convenient expression of the political dichotomy of America.

More interesting words populate the full list of winners (strangely not linked to by the Sheidlower article). Dan Savage's campaign for "santorum" (careful where you click that link) seems to have worked, since it won for "most outrageous". Also interesting that the Chinese luanqibazhao was nominated under "least likely to succeed" - I can see why, those aren't easy consonant sounds to get across the tongue. Heck, it was even spelt wrongly as luanqibaozhao in the nomination, so its chances of success seem rather remote.

Tangential link: Double-tongued Word Wrester, a blog on neologisms.


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