Rocks for Jocks, etc. (UNCLASSIFIED)

Charles Doyle cdoyle at UGA.EDU
Tue Apr 27 13:34:09 UTC 2010

Some years back, locally at least, there was a series of jocular or satiric rhyming nicknames for "trendy" courses or academic fields that were being instituted in the 1970s/1980s; perhaps those nicknames were modeled on the common abbreviation (oral as well as graphic) "Brit. Lit." or perhaps "Lit. Crit."  The ones I can remember are "Clit Lit." (also, of course, "Chick Lit."), with its counterpart "Dick Lit."; "Flit Lit."; "Spic Lit."; and "Hick Lit." ('Southern Literature'; this was at the University of Georgia!).

Urban Dictionary now gives "clit lit" as a synonym for 'chick books/movies' (UD also gives "dick lit" in a complementary sense).

It's interesting how /Ik/ is found to be a serviceable rhyme for /It/.

But then, "Physics for Poets" is probably assumed to alliterate (that course was also offered at Princeton when my son studied there in the early 1990s--along with the ubiquitous "Rocks for Jocks").


---- Original message ----
>Date: Mon, 26 Apr 2010 19:02:39 -0400
>From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> (on behalf of "Garson O'Toole" <adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM>)-------------------------------------
>Dave Wilton wrote:
>> I would guess "Darkness at Noon" is art history, due to the slide
>> presentations characteristic of the course,  a.k.a. "Art in the Dark."
>That agrees with the list of college course nicknames given in the
>Dictionary of Jargon excerpt listed below. The interpretation given by
>John Baker for "nuts and sluts" is supported, and the class mentioned
>by Gregory McNamee is included in the list.
>Citation: 1987, Dictionary of Jargon by Jonathon Green, Page 124,
>Routledge. (Google Books limited view)
>blabs in labs (linguistics),
>chokes and croaks (first aid and safety education),
>clapping for credit (music appreciation),
>darkness at noon (art history slide show),
>Gods for clods (comparative religion),
>holes and poles (sex education), …
>nuts and sluts (abnormal psychology),
>… Several more are listed in the text.

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