"dog whistles"

Amy West medievalist at W-STS.COM
Fri Apr 4 11:42:46 UTC 2014

On 4/4/14, 12:00 AM, Automatic digest processor wrote:
> I like the description the philosopher John Holbo at Crooked Timber has used, "impolite fictions," but that doesn't get at the semantic process here, which it seems to me to involve referring to X via one of its stereotypical properties (as, e.g, "inner city," "food stamp users") with the intention of evoking but not actually denoting it. (Or maybe I should make that, "referring to X by naming something to which X stereotypcially applies -- e.g., food stamp users are stereotypically black.) But what should it be called?
> Geoff
It seems like a "stereotyped metonymy" to me, where a stereotyped
quality is used to stand for the whole stereotype. Or a "false metonymy"
to be more explicit.

---Amy West

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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