[Ads-l] FDR quotes ("was words connected to a single provenance")

Geoffrey Nunberg nunbergg at GMAIL.COM
Thu Aug 30 14:48:53 EDT 2018

What a memory to pass down! It’s interesting to ask which of FDR’s famous quotations are still current. “Date that will live in infamy” (often as “day of infamy”) remains widely familiar. So does “nothing to fear but fear itself,” though I don’t know how many still attribute that to FDR.  It’s understandable that fewer recall "one-third of a nation ill-housed, ill-clad, ill-nourished“ or "the [great] arsenal of democracy,” which were of their moment.  But I was struck to discover that of my 50-odd Berkeley undergraduates, none—repeat, none—could name all of his Four Freedoms, “want” and “fear” apparently having been jettisoned somewhere along the way. You could write the subsequent history of liberalism right there.

> From: Stephen Goranson <goranson at DUKE.EDU>
> Subject: Re: words connected to a single provenance
> Date: August 29, 2018 at 2:02:22 AM PDT
> As to what may or may not fit the request by Geoffrey Nunberg, whose example, infamy, came from a speech* (in a sentence), such may be up to him--yes, kemosahbee?
> Stephen
> *[My Mother (then a secretary in the Veterans Administration congressional liaison office) stood at the back of the House floor that Dec. 8.]

Geoffrey Nunberg
School of Information
University of California at Berkeley

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

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