Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM
Sun Jan 30 19:51:45 UTC 2005

As many will recognize, this word has become something os a buzz word in the area of  sociocultural literary theory and kindred realms.

For example, if you read and enjoy a murder mystery, you are "complicit" in societal violence.
If you don't enjoy it, you're still highly complicit if you bought the book, because the profit reaped from your payment encourages the production of still more violent tales and images in society, which are complicit in the accomplishment of real violence. If you borrowed the book from the library, you are most deeply complicit because you are contributing to the perceived popularity of such books, leading to the library's purchase of further violence-encouraging publications, and the pattern contuinues.

Another example: suppose you like NFL football. That makes you complicit in societal violence because...Aw, the hell with it.

Fred Shapiro <fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU> wrote:
---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
Sender: American Dialect Society
Poster: Fred Shapiro
Subject: "Complicit"

Here's a fairly common word that is not in the OED:

complicit (not in OED)

1969 _University of Kansas Law Review_ XVII. 631 (Hein Online) Consumers,
as the result of their peculiar personalities and motivations, are
complicit partners in deception, and in some cases may be almost solely
the cause for any misperceptions that occur.

Fred Shapiro

Fred R. Shapiro Editor
Associate Librarian for Collections and YALE DICTIONARY OF QUOTATIONS
Access and Lecturer in Legal Research Yale University Press,
Yale Law School forthcoming
e-mail: fred.shapiro at yale.edu http://quotationdictionary.com

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