"posture" as a transitive verb

Charles C Doyle cdoyle at UGA.EDU
Mon Oct 17 12:10:16 UTC 2011

In an interview in _Time_ magazine (24 Oct. 2011, p. 64), the actor/activist George Clooney discusses the failure of Demoncrats to claim sufficient credit for the Obama administration's successes:  "Democrats should talk to Hollywood about how to posture some of these things."

That use of "posture" does not very closely match either of the senses of transitive "posture" recorded in the OED.  The first, "To place in position; to set," is labeled "obs.," with the most reecent example from 1735.  The only other transitive sense that the OED gives is "To place in a particular attitude or pose; to dispose the body or limbs of (a person) in a particular way.  Usu. in passive.  Also fig."

Perhaps Clooney was being fig.?  Or was he employing a new "Hollywood" use of the verb?


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