Fred Shapiro fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Thu Jul 15 12:55:31 UTC 1999

On Thu, 15 Jul 1999, Dennis R. Preston wrote:

> It's very seldom that a "coiner" is personally identified. Is it really the
> case that you wouldn't like to hear from him about the coinage? I don't
> want to belittle your eterprise at all (for the "dating" of senses,
> expressions, and even items is an important task), but the cognitive, folk,
> anecdotal, and other factors which surround coinage and shift are surely as
> interesting (and, I would claim, with again no intent to demean the dating
> game) "linguistically" (if not sociohistorically) more interesting.

Your points are well taken.  Since Leon Mead published a book entitled
_Word-Coinage_ at the turn of the century, there has been no real study of
neologization focusing on the individual coiners.  It would be fascinating
to get commentaries by such word-coiners as R. D. Rosen (psychobabble),
Pauline Leet (sexist), Wayne Oates (workaholic), John McCarthy
(artificial intelligence), William Gibson (cyberspace), Ted Nelson
(hypertext), Dave Marsh (punk rock), Robin Morgan (herstory), etc., as to
the circumstances of their coinages.

Fred R. Shapiro                             Coeditor (with Jane Garry)
Associate Librarian for Public Services     TRIAL AND ERROR: AN OXFORD
  and Lecturer in Legal Research            ANTHOLOGY OF LEGAL STORIES
Yale Law School                             Oxford University Press, 1998
e-mail: fred.shapiro at               ISBN 0-19-509547-2

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