More on "JASS"

Thomas Paikeday t.paikeday at SYMPATICO.CA
Fri Mar 30 02:37:58 UTC 2001

Rudy has made a very interesting point which I thought was a given in
lexicographical practice.

I have always considered any linguistic expression, visible or spoken,
as evidence to be taken into account in defining lexical items. (That's
a very general statement subject to further consideration and criticism;
I wish I could be more specific). I have been in the habit of making
notes on 4" x 6" slips of anything interesting in what I see and hear,
raido and TV being the prime source of such data.

Does all lexicographic evidence have to be textual? Oral testimony can
be made textual by being taken down and authenticated as to source and
date. Isn't this what is done in linguistic fieldwork, as in DARE? Some
evidence by its very nature is not quotable as citations, but I think it
could be used to define a lexical item.


Rudolph C Troike wrote:
> Thanks to David and Gerald for their responses. I'm pleased to hear that
> at least one dictionary is utilizing radio and TV broadcasts for data.
> The "textual" example of "JASS" that I was referring to was not a spoken
> comment, but rather a photograph of a sign in front of a building, which
> appeared in Ken Burns' TV series "Jazz". The narration indicated a general
> dating for the picture, but it is the photograph itself that I was raising
> the question about as to whether this was sufficiently "textual" to be
> treated lexicographically as evidence. Presumably with some digging, the
> source of the photo can be unearthed, and its approximate date determined.
> My impression was that the implication was that the photo was pre-1913,
> but I could be wrong.
>         --Rudy

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