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Tag Archives: Strictly speaking

Strictly speaking | Holistorexia

While we might recognise the verbal elements that make up the recently coined word holistorexia its meaning is not immediately obvious. It’s a combination of holist(ic), as in holistic medicine, and (an)orexia which literally means “lack of desire or appetite”. ...

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Strictly Speaking | RUOK

Amid concerns about other people’s mental health, this four-letter initialism/acronym for “Are you OK?” came alive in 2021. It was coined some years before by an Australian non-profit suicide prevention organisation (in 2009) which holds an annual R U OK? ...

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Strictly Speaking | Crispr foods

At first sight this could be a slogan for crunchier fish and chips from the deep freeze, something which food companies could definitely improve on. In fact, it’s a highly sophisticated technique for editing the genes of plants, animals and ...

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Strictly Speaking | Skinship

Words and phrases are quite often borrowed from other languages to express a concept for which there is no existing term – think of schadenfreude or déjà vu in English (from German and French respectively). Less frequently, a completely new ...

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Strictly speaking | Genericide

The - cide suffix provides us with homicide, the most general word for killing another person, as well as specific types of killing that identify the person killed: fratricide (one’s brother or sister), patricide (one’s father), regicide (the king), suicide ...

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Strictly speaking | Sousveillance

The ever-increasing use of technology to monitor our daily activities – from CCTV cameras on every street to social media platforms such as Facebook and TikTok acquiring user data for marketing (or more sinister) purposes – has bred in us ...

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Strictly speaking | Proctoring

Just what does a proctor do? Essentially his role has always been to manage the affairs of others, as their agent or proxy. But over the centuries the proctor’s responsibilities have varied with the institution he was appointed to. In ...

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Strictly speaking | Zombie terms

Browsing through the Cambridge Dictionary’s new words blog, as you do, it’s noticeable how many new compounds are being formed with the word zombie as the first element. Some of these refer to that horror movie staple’s habit of returning ...

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Strictly speaking | Epistocracy

The term epistocracy* surfaced some years ago in philosophical discussions about the nature of democracy, starting with Estlund’s Democratic Authority (2008). It taps an ancient issue in the debate as to who should be allowed to participate in electing a ...

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Strictly Speaking: Black Friday

You may have been a little confused when bombarded with advertising for ‘Black Friday’ sales in the lead-up to Christmas last year. In the US, Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving (always the fourth Thursday in November) when shops ...

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