Word: affluenza

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Thu Dec 12 20:13:42 UTC 2013

Thanks Jesse and Christopher. Great to see the OED entry. Here is an
entertaining instance in 1908 revealing another attempt to assign a
meaning to the term. The article referred to "The Beloved Vagabond"
which Wikipedia claims is a 1906 novel by William John Locke.

Periodical M. A. P. (London Mainly About People)
Date: March 21, 1908,
Article title: The Money-lending Industry,
Page 270,
Location: London, Middlesex
Database: NewspaperArchive

[Begin excerpt]
The Money-lending Industry.

The tragedy of the journalist is the fact that he has no
fixity of tenure. To-day he may be suffering from what
my friend Mr. Locke, in The Beloved Vagabond, justly
characterises as  "affluenza." To-morrow he may be in a
doss-house. I may explain that I am referring to the
higher ranks of journalism, for in journalism there is always
plenty of room at the bottom. I  know  that  Scottish
journalists  preach  prudence, providence, and parsimony to
journalists of other nationalities. But Scotsmen can afford
to  be  provident, prudent, and parsimonious, because  you
cannot borrow money from a Scotsman.
[End excerpt]


On Thu, Dec 12, 2013 at 2:50 PM, Christopher Philippo <toff at mac.com> wrote:
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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Christopher Philippo <toff at MAC.COM>
> Subject:      Re: Word: affluenza
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> *  Dunn, William. "Poor Little Rich Kids Plagued By 'Affluenza.'" Chicago Tribune. March 13, 1986. http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1986-03-13/features/8601190090_1_affluenza-wealth-grow
> *  Mills, Marja. "Who Coins New Words? Tracing One Back To The Big Bang." Chicago Tribune. April 10, 2001. http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2001-04-10/features/0104100032_1_new-world-college-dictionary-dictionary-editors-term
> John Levy attributed the word “affluenza” to Fred Whitman, who in turn claimed to have come up with it around 1954.  No mention of a published use of it earlier than John Levy’s is made in Mills’ 2001 article.
> Christopher K. Philippo
> ------------------------------------------------------------
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