Thursday, April 30, 2009

Colourful Speech of the Resplendent Kind by jajo chicco

Dear Monique: Excellents points. It is probably the

dumbing-down of modern day language is in the simple fact

that we over-simplify the English language in works of

fiction today.
Nothing is inherently wrong with simple language; it

promotes communication between a wide range of interest

groups. However, there may be a need to over-simplify

language in fiction to the point of stupifying the

language. Words are like gems that flavour the subjective

content of a work. Contrastly, words are specific to the

topic being discussed as you had demonstrated with Hegel,

Kant, Satre, etc. with the fine examples cited.
To personalize a novel, the author can use various

stylistic leanings, both personal and historical. It is a

matter of taste, and the educational background of the

reader as to which kind of novel they choose to read.
Personally I like a fast read, as I am a multi-tasker and

cannot stand being stuck on a word. Big words are not

fitting with the common vernacular of the day. Most fiction

is popular by far and this is the taste of the land.
At times I appreciate the unique speech of another

specialized area, say, Philosophy for example. It will take

me hours to figure it out. It is in this way, frustrating

to some extent. However, the end result is a wider

comprehension of the world's intellectual thought. This is

usually way over my head unless simplified as per

Intellectual Treatise for Dummies.
Language keeps evolving or de-evolving depending on the

readers point of view. Some use plain speech like

Hemmingway, or much more flowery speech, like Jane Austen.

Jane Austen's times were so suffocatingly misogynist that I

did not like reading her novels without feeling a great

deal of feminist angst and disgust.
Could anyone find reference to a current author who uses

esoteric and rarely used words? There are not many writers

today who choose to use a wide spectrum or full Oxford

dictionary, unabridged edition in their novels. It would

not be profitable because the writing style does not appeal

to the wide audience, for this reason I agree. Conversely,

intellectual pursuits should not limit the author/artist.

However, authors must eat. We know the winner here; the

colloquial Funk and Wagnalls or worse yet, slang dictionary

perusal by numerous authors. Such flowering writing should

come with a disclaimer; Beware; The contents of this novel

is limited to, but not emcompassing all aspects of language

which reaches beyond the boundaries of the contempary

speech known today.
Indeed new words should be made to amaze and astound the

masses not to confound and frustrate the common everyday

and everyperson reader.
In this regard language and its usage or non-usage does

prove the point that language is tied to status, and other

societal constraints. Comprehension of those of certain
"snob" status are limiting to the community as a whole.
In today's global village we need to communicate quickly.

This light-speed need to communicate may be the reason why

readers choose fiction with limited vocabulary. We read

fiction in the US and Canada as easy-read because time is a

significant factor in our enjoyment and our collective

empowerment as a nation. We want to share jointly together

and this is why there is often outrage and disdain when a

new word with so called "snob appeals" appear in a text.
This is a theoretical analysis of why we choose or do not

choose to include word variety in speech. Like multiple

flowers in the garden, we can choose resplendent colour

language or simple black and white journalistic writing.

However I have noticed some journalist feeding the

intellectual need by inserting academic words from time to

time in their journalistic reporting. Is this true Mike

Easy read fiction is not purely for lazy reasons alone. We

need easy reading material because we need instant access

to the thought process and need quick judgement of thought


The reading public are, for the most part,just being too

laxidaisical to pick up a dictionary or click and point to

Meriam Webster or my favourite Free Dictionary online.
Like fast food we want a fast read, and so we limit our

comprehension and our over-all collective intelligence

median IQ. Some plain food for thought from a plain Jane

albeit Jane Austen wannabe! jajo

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