[Ads-l] body = 'human being as a complete person'

Robin Hamilton robin.hamilton3 at VIRGINMEDIA.COM
Tue Sep 1 20:29:52 UTC 2015


From: Jonathan Lighter

<<
Not quite the same - because for Burns (I assume) it was a familiar idiom.
It just meant "person," without implying that some special aspect of
personhood was being emphasized.

For the opposite, cf. 20th C. " warm body" = 'person as interchangeable and
nondescript.'

JL
>>

The DSL does imply a particularly Scottish spin to the term:

"In the sense of a human being, a person, an equivalent of the pron. one, 
oneself, it seems to have a wider range than in St.Eng. It may imply 
sympathy or contempt, the degree or quality of which is often indicated by 
an accompanying adj."

I suspect there's a lot of previous around the term, stretching back to at 
least the Renaissance.

I haven't checked this through in the OED, but I suspect there may be a 
transition from an original sense of "body" = "the complete person", to a 
(possibly later) opposition of Body vs. Mind/Soul, leading to a (relatively) 
late sense which stresses the sheer corporeality of the physical person.

Or something ...

But I'm guessing.

And don't start me on the tripartite Body/Soul/Mind distinction in Andrew 
Marvell's "The Garden" ...

Robin

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

On Tue, Sep 1, 2015 at 3:15 PM, Robin Hamilton <
robin.hamilton3 at virginmedia.com> wrote:

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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Robin Hamilton <robin.hamilton3 at VIRGINMEDIA.COM>
> Subject:      Re: body = 'human being as a complete person'
>
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> "Gin a body meet a body / Coming through the rye ..." -- R. Burns.
>
>
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Jonathan Lighter
> Sent: Tuesday, September 01, 2015 3:46 PM
> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
> Subject: body = 'human being as a complete person'
>
> ---------------------- Information from the mail
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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM>
> Subject:      body = 'human being as a complete person'
>
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> Dec. 24, 2014:
>
>
> "Every 28 hours a Black body is slain by a cop, security or vigilante.
> EVERY 28 FUCKING HOURS. This is what genocide looks like."
>
> A Minnesota spokesman for #Blacklivesmatter has repeated this phrase
> several times on CNN, though leaving out "security or vigilante."
>
> Traditionally a person has been considered as more than a mere body, but
> maybe that's changing.
>
> JL
>
> --
> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the 
> truth."
>
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> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
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-- 
"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

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The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org 

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