11 January 2007

Ward the King

Stephen Ward, the big dog, the director of the School of Journalism.

I like the guy, let that be said—although it's not for peons to like kings. My feeling runs nearer to trembling awe, so different is the power we wield.

Which is why I've started compiling a list of the weird words he uses. They sound correct, but each time I hear one, I mouth it mentally to myself and promise to look it up.

There were five in our first Press and Society class:
—"issue," pronounced to rhyme with 'miss you';
—"genre," pronounced ZHAHN, like 'John' in French, without the fluttering 'r';
—"propagandic," which should be the name of a hip hair salon;
—"periodicy," which I suspect is missing a couple of letters; and
—"censorial," which I think should be "censorious"—'in a mood to censor.'

It's hard enough getting through the dense vocab in academe without your profs riffing, Miles Davis-like, on the language, no? Then again, maybe he's Cajun or something.

Let's see what the OED says.

({sm}{shti}{sh}(j)u{lm}, {sm}{shti}sju{lm}) Looks like he's on solid, if slightly poncey, ground on this one. Pushing out that 'y' sound purses your mouth. One for the bossman.

({zh}{fatatilde}r) Nope, he should definitely be licking the 'r' at the end. One-one.

(Rare) Pertaining to a propaganda or to propagandism. Bugger, thought we had him here. The more common usage is 'propagandistic,' which the OED has as "given or inclined to propagandism; devoted to the propagation of doctrines or principles."

Funny, I'd never noticed the 'pagan' right in the middle of that word. I wonder what pagan propaganda would look like. "Barbecuing ON A SPIT is a SOCIAL GOOD," maybe. Two-one, Ward.

There are no results. The nearest alphabetical match is displayed in the side-frame. Good. I think he was looking for 'periodicity,' or "the quality or character of being periodic; the quality of regular recurrence; tendency to recur at (esp. regular) intervals. {dag}2. Recurrence of a woman's periods; menstruation." Two-two.

1. Of, pertaining to, or characteristic of a censor; 2. Of persons: Like a censor; censorious. Wow, I was almost sure that was a mistake.

I'm undone at the end, and the professor snakes the victory, three-two.

Screw it: I've heard him say "orientate" twice. Call it a tie.

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