when I use a word,' Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, `it means just what I choose it to mean -- neither more nor less.'
`That's a great deal to make one word mean,' Alice said in a thoughtful tone.
`When I make a word do a lot of work like that,' said Humpty Dumpty, `I always pay it extra.'
`Oh!' said Alice. She was too much puzzled to make any other remark.
`Ah, you should see `em come round me of a Saturday night,' Humpty Dumpty went on, wagging his head gravely from side to side: `for to get their wages, you know.'
(Alice didn't venture to ask what he paid them with; and so you see I can't tell you.)
`You seem very clever at explaining words, Sir,' said Alice.
Dave Sim has entered the Humpty Dumpty phase of his career. (I recognise it well, my friends, having been there awhile, in fact the decorated real egg above is from my Fate of the Artist, and since we ate it you'll never know how much of that is photoshopped)
Is Dave Sim A misogynist or is he just sexist? From the posted account of the email conversation involving Chester Brown and Dave Sim: "Absolutely, I said. I agree with you that Chet's argument is faulty. While, yes, languages do evolve - words don't suddenly lose their meanings. What Chet is describing is sexist, not misogynist. Misogynist is a fairly specific term and if it and sexist meant the same thing, there would be no need of the word. And, I do think that you fall into that category. I've had this argument on the internet many times.
So, Dave faxes back that no - he is not a sexist, because in today's world sexist is assumed to mean the same thing as misogynist..."
Dave probably thinks of me as one of his friends who did not stand up for him in his hour of need, and it is true that I have conscientiously avoided ever commenting on the issue. However, it seems to me that if you make a series of statements that is antipathetic to the hard won status of social equality of women as a group, that they, individually and as a group, are likely to call you names. At the risk of sounding sexist myself, what made you think it might be a good idea to haggle over the definitions of the words?
Labels: the bloody English language