Date: Wed, 19 Nov 1997 11:18:40 -0500 From: Gregory {Greg} Downing Subject: Re: comedic At 11:00 AM 11/19/97 +0000, you (bergdahl[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] wrote: >The term is now over for us and today I have a final in the sophomore >drama class. Repeatedly the term turned up in papers where > would have sufficed. Is this a new piece of jargon on the model >of where would do? There is a 1649 citation [I >believe in a shorter version of the OED] 'pertaining to or relating to >comedy' but in the the most recent MMLA a panel I was on was titled >"D.H. Lawrence, Satirist: Revealing Eros Through Comedic Technique." So >the term has some academic currency. I queried the coordinator of the >panel, a retired colleague, used the word for the humor. I haven't >searched for it on the net yet. Any intuitions? [distinterested parties >only] > Fast guess, with no pretensions to being more than that -- When a word starts to get used in everyday and popular senses, there's a tendency to coin a more high-level way of expressing the putatively higher-level sense(s) of that word, often through a related but morphologically more complex word. Thus, "social" can mean having to do with courtesy or friendliness (paying a social visit; someone is "a very social person"), hence the emergence of "societal" for various kibnds of sociological (or similar) uses. "Comic" is encountered in everyday and pop-cult usage in such senses as a person who does stand-up (a "comic") or a kind of illustrated story or joke in printed media ("comics"), or anything funny ("comic," adj.). Hence "comedic" as an alternative for would-be academic, philosophical, etc. use... Not a sanctioning, just a stab at a possible explanation.... Gregory {Greg} Downing, at greg.downing[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] or downingg[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]