Pronunciation question (from L. Urdang)

Arnold M. Zwicky zwicky at CSLI.STANFORD.EDU
Tue May 29 15:34:12 UTC 2007

On May 29, 2007, at 7:37 AM, DInIs wrote:

> Funny how people talk ways they claim they don't;
> I've even had them deny stuff I've recorded (or
> even shown them on spectrograms).
> Well, not too funny when you consider the reasons.

probably everybody who's collected data systematically or taught a
course in which variation played a role has come across this
phenomenon.  does anyone have a name for it?

(a related phenomenon -- Do As I Say, Not As I Do -- is familiar to
anyone who's looked at the advice literature.  the adviser will
sternly proscribe some variant -- restrictive relative "which", for
example, or logical rather than temporal "since", or a pronoun with a
possessive as antecedent -- and then use it, often within sentences
of the proscription's formulation.)

if we want a suitably scientific-sounding label, we could base it on
"anosognosia" (coined by Babinski in 1914, as French "anosognosie"),
which the OED defines as 'unawareness of or failure to acknowledge
one's hemiplegia or other disability.'  (it's usually the result of
right brain injury of some kind.  in my partner jacques's case, the
cause was radiation.)  the word has the parts:
   negative a- + noso- 'disease' + gnos-(os) 'knowledge' + ia

we can then replace the greek stem noso- with some more appropriate
one, like praxi- 'performance, practice'.  ta-da!  "apraxignosia"
'unawareness of or failure to acknowledge one's actual practice'.


The American Dialect Society -

More information about the Ads-l mailing list