[Ads-l] Meaningless "so" at start of reply sentence

Cohen, Gerald Leonard gcohen at MST.EDU
Sun Nov 12 17:12:21 EST 2017

Yesterday a friend asked me about something I've noticed for at least a year: On TV and radio I often hear a response to a question begin with the meaningless word so.


Question: Did the Democrats have a good turnout?

Answer begins: So let's look at the figures.

Has this feature been treated yet in any linguistic discussions?  And is my impression correct that it is a relatively recent development (the past year or two)?

Gerald Cohen

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

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