[Ads-l] "Alpha fee" (UNCLASSIFIED)

Mullins, Bill CIV (US) william.d.mullins18.civ at MAIL.MIL
Wed Aug 19 16:57:05 UTC 2015


CLASSIFICATION: UNCLASSIFIED

When I was getting my engineering degree (1980-1985), "phi" was typically used as a symbol to denote an angle being measured or described (for example, the variables in the spherical coordinate system were rho, theta, phi or r, theta, phi, where r/rho was the distance from the origin, theta was an angle equivalent to longitude on a globe, and phi was an angle equivalent to latitude on a globe).  It was always pronounced "fee".

> -----Original Message-----
> From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of Charles C Doyle
> Sent: Wednesday, August 19, 2015 11:48 AM
> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
> Subject: Re: "Alpha fee"
> 
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Charles C Doyle <cdoyle at UGA.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: "Alpha fee"
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> 
> Do we know what the organization's "preferred" pronunciation (officially or=
>  informally) is?
> 
> With sorority/fraternity names or nicknames, "phi" pronounced to rhyme with=  "buy" does seem most common. However, among
> fraternities we have the nickn= ame "FIJI," for Phi Gamma Delta, rhyming with "Fiji" (and thus occasionally=  provoking allegations of anti-
> Pacific-islander racism).=20
> 
> And the sorority Alpha Xi Delta pronounces itself "alpha zee delta."
> 
> Charlie
> 
> ________________________________________
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -------------------=
> ----
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Joel Berson <berson at ATT.NET>
> Subject:      "Alpha fee"
> ---------------------------------------------------------------------------=
> ----
> 
> Two staffers on tonight's "Inside Edition" pronounced the name of the soror= =3D ity "Alpha Phi", now notorious for its bimbo recruiting
> video, as "fee".=3D= C2=3D
> =3DA0 I and the OED say "fie".
> 
> Joel=
> 
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
CLASSIFICATION: UNCLASSIFIED

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