Thursday, February 3, 2011

New Words Found in the 2010 Oxford English Dictionary

Like all living things the language is in constant flux. The Vietnam war brought us new words such as “defoliate, firefight, friendly fire, search and destroy.”  After Hiroshima and Nagasaki we started using“mushroom cloud, countdown, fireball, chain reaction, fallout, fission, fusion.”The new technology gave us “ATM, Pin number, e-mail.” and lately the progress of computer technology contributed to the creation of  new words. In fact we find a range of widely used  internet-related terms and particularly from social networking. However some language critics say that some neologisms were created as a marketing gimmick, others simply to compete for the title of  “Words of 2009 The Oxford English Dictionary is constantly updating, adding new words. Have you ever defriended or unfriended someone, or organized a tweetup (tweet+meet up),or blown a vuvuzela (musical instrument used at the World Cup in South Africa)? In fact the 2010 Oxford English Dictionary has  more than 2000 of these words, such as texting, sexting, netbook, globalshift,, ecotown, interweb (internet), choice-mom, (a person who chooses to be a single mother),chill pill (pill for relaxing), bromance (non sexual relation between 2 men), refudiate, (for which Sarah Palin was awarded the distinction of coining the 2010 word of the year and that she tried to justify the gaffe by saying:“I pressed an F instead of a P), staycation (a holiday spent in one’s home country), buzzkill (a person or thing that has a depressing effect), cheeseball (lacking taste or style). Let’s hope that in the future newly created words won’t create any controversy.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Anthony,
    Interesting post! I understand that language evolves (and sometimes it's needed) like some of the examples you provided. However, words that come from gang slang, gaffes, or made-up words like those found in rap, should NOT be included in the dictionary. I think they should be left out period.