Ruth Wajnryb's "Funktionary"

Benjamin Zimmer bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU
Fri Dec 2 21:24:39 UTC 2005

Benjamin Zimmer wrote:

> There's a column in the Sydney Morning Herald by Ruth Wajnryb, talking
> about her new book _Funktionary: A Cheeky Collection of Contemporary Words_:
> -----
> Funktionary is a predictionary. It's a slice of that limbo-land where
> new words are happening, but are still not sufficiently "at large" to be
> captured in a major dictionary. I like to think of it as a holding bay
> for neonatal words. They may or may not make it. But they're with us for
> a snapshot of time and the collection acknowledges their playfulness,
> wit, creativity, flexibility and occasional poignancy.
> -----
> (ADS and Allan Metcalf are mentioned.)

I knew I recognized that odd name "Wajnryb" from somewhere... she wrote
another recent book called _Expletive Deleted: A Good Look at Bad
Language_, which Arnold Zwicky notes is quite unfair to linguists.

I guess given her track record we should be glad she didn't say anything
nasty about ADS members in the article. But who knows what she says in
the book...

Language Log post about the SMH article here:

--Ben Zimmer

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