[Lingtyp] coronavirus and Zipf

Aleksandrs Berdicevskis alexberd at gmail.com
Sat May 2 15:30:39 EDT 2020


I mean I've heard "digerdöden" in contexts both like "Erik is ill. -- Is it
digerdöden?" (illness) and like "The conference is postponed until next
year, hopefully digerdöden is over then" (epidemic). I'm not a native
speaker, of course, but I think "corona" can be used in both contexts, too.
That's probably tangential to Natalia's main question, though.

Best,
Sasha

On Sat, May 2, 2020 at 9:06 PM Maria Koptjevskaja Tamm <tamm at ling.su.se>
wrote:

> Sasha, I am not quite sure I understand your mention of “Digerdöden”: do
> you want to say that Swedish uses the same term for illnesses and
> epidemics? I don’t think this is completely true right now. The more
> official name for the virus is “coronavirus”, while “corona” is definitely
> the preferred term in Colloquial Swedish.  The current pandemics is
> normally called “coronapandemin” ‘corona+pandemics+DEF.SG”, and there are
> many more compounds based on “corona”: “coronacrisen” ’the corona crisis”,
> “coronatiden” ’the corona time’,”coronapatienter” ‘corona patients’, etc.
>
> Best,
> Maria
>
> Prof. Maria Koptjevskaja Tamm
> Dept. of linguistics, Stockholm university, 106 91, Stockholm, Sweden
> tel.: +46-8-16 26 20 (office)
> www.ling.su.se/tamm
> tamm at ling.su.se
>
>
> On 2 May 2020, at 17:12, Aleksandrs Berdicevskis <alexberd at gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
> In Swedish, people say and write both "corona" (sometimes "korona") and
> "coronavirus". I think the short form is more frequent in colloquial
> speech, but I haven't done an extensive corpus analysis. It does not have
> any popular meaning. "Digerdöden" 'Black death' (lit. 'Great Death') is
> also often used to refer both to the pandemic and the disease.
>
> Best,
> Sasha
>
> On Sat, May 2, 2020 at 3:58 PM Spike Gildea <spike at uoregon.edu> wrote:
>
>> In my circles, we just call it “the virus”, or elide it altogether, as it
>> is presupposed in any conversations involving infection or death.
>>
>>
>>
>> An email from a friend who had been out of touch:
>>
>> “My husband and I both got really sick last week, but we’re pretty sure
>> it was not the virus.”
>>
>>
>>
>> First question after morning greetings in the family: both the virus and
>> the local context presupposed:
>>
>> “Have they reported any new infections today?”
>>
>>
>>
>> Zoom cocktails with a friend from Washington (to the north), response to
>> the question “How are you guys doing?”:
>>
>> “We’ve been really fortunate so far in Eugene — eight days without a new
>> case and still only two deaths!”
>>
>>
>>
>> Best,
>>
>> Spike
>>
>>
>>
>> *From: *Lingtyp <lingtyp-bounces at listserv.linguistlist.org> on behalf of
>> Paolo Ramat <paoram at unipv.it>
>> *Date: *Saturday, May 2, 2020 at 4:27 AM
>> *To: *'Natalia Levshina' <natalevs at gmail.com>, "
>> lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org" <lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org>
>> *Subject: *[Lingtyp] R: coronavirus and Zipf
>>
>>
>>
>> Dear All,
>>
>> the short form for *coronavirus* is Covid-19. As in Russian, Ital. *corona
>> * means* ‘*crown’; therefore it is not used as clipping for the virus
>> name;  and there have been jokes like the Russian on Prince Charles.
>>
>>
>>
>> Best wishes and take care, without Clorox injections as it has been
>> suggested…
>>
>>
>>
>> P.Rt.
>>
>>
>>
>> *Da:* Lingtyp [mailto:lingtyp-bounces at listserv.linguistlist.org] *Per
>> conto di *Natalia Levshina
>> *Inviato:* sabato 2 maggio 2020 12:47
>> *A:* lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org
>> *Oggetto:* [Lingtyp] coronavirus and Zipf
>>
>>
>>
>> Dear colleagues,
>>
>>
>>
>> I'm writing an informal blog post about the impact of the coronavirus
>> pandemic on language, with a focus on Zipf's correlation between frequency
>> and word/expression length. For example, the clipping *corona (*from*
>> coronavirus) *is becoming increasingly popular in English:
>> https://public.oed.com/blog/corpus-analysis-of-the-language-of-covid-19/
>> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/public.oed.com/blog/corpus-analysis-of-the-language-of-covid-19/__;!!C5qS4YX3!WEuNp_Qa-vMRc7VqynfDLViq9DneH3GRhvbL2B43pMocej5_JREu_eEmfbyvibZ7$>
>>
>>
>> I also have some data from Dutch, German, Russian and Polish. I'm
>> wondering how other languages behave in that respect. In particular,
>>
>>
>>
>> 1) Is there a shorter form for coronavirus, like *corona*? Can it only
>> refer to the virus, or also to the pandemic and the disease?
>>
>> 2) If there is such a form, is it used widely or occasionally (e.g.
>> humorously/creatively/in quotes)? For example, in Russian *koronavirus* is
>> the preferred form because *korona* means 'a crown'. There's an
>> untranslatable Russian joke, *Prince Charles finally got a crown
>> (korona), but it was the wrong one.*
>>
>> 3) Is there a popular everyday (i.e. non-astronomic) meaning of the word
>> that corresponds to corona in that language (e.g. a crown, like in Russian)?
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> 4) Also, are there any other abbreviations or substitutions (e.g. the use
>> of a shorter formally unrelated word, like *car* instead of *automobile*)
>> related to the pandemic you have observed?
>>
>>
>>
>> I promise to post a summary if I get enough interesting data.
>>
>>
>>
>> Many thanks and stay corona(virus)-free!
>>
>>
>>
>> Natalia Levshina
>>
>>
>>
>> --
>>
>> Natalia Levshina
>>
>> Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics
>>
>> Wundtlaan 1, 6525 XD Nijmegen
>>
>> The Netherlands
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>>
>> [image: Avast logo]
>> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/www.avast.com/antivirus__;!!C5qS4YX3!WEuNp_Qa-vMRc7VqynfDLViq9DneH3GRhvbL2B43pMocej5_JREu_eEmfW5rwkoz$>
>>
>> Questa e-mail è stata controllata per individuare virus con Avast
>> antivirus.
>> www.avast.com
>> <https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/www.avast.com/antivirus__;!!C5qS4YX3!WEuNp_Qa-vMRc7VqynfDLViq9DneH3GRhvbL2B43pMocej5_JREu_eEmfW5rwkoz$>
>>
>>
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> Lingtyp mailing list
>> Lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org
>> http://listserv.linguistlist.org/mailman/listinfo/lingtyp
>>
> _______________________________________________
> Lingtyp mailing list
> Lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org
> http://listserv.linguistlist.org/mailman/listinfo/lingtyp
>
>
>
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://listserv.linguistlist.org/pipermail/lingtyp/attachments/20200502/2683737c/attachment-0001.html>


More information about the Lingtyp mailing list