Date: Tue, 28 Oct 1997 16:48:35 -0500

From: "Jeutonne P. Brewer" jpbrewer[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]HAMLET.UNCG.EDU

Subject: Re: PC Dictionaries?

On Tue, 28 Oct 1997, CARRIE SUSANN ADDINGTON wrote:

I am personally outraged by the fact that a stereotypical label has

been placed in a dictionary as a meaningful word. Does white trash

exist in the dictionary?--same thing! I hate racism adn the fact that it

exists but to put it in the dictionary as a word.No! It is a damn

stereotype. Does anyone agree? Is anyone else upset with this?


Unfortunately, these words and phrases are full of meanings. That's the

problem being discussed on the list. A legitimate dictionary has an

obligation to include these words (and many others). Dictionaries report

on/record usage; they don't dictate usage. Do you remember the old

claim. Ain't ain't a word because ain't ain't in the dictionary?

Of course, the statement by itself proved that ain't was -- and is --

a word in English. The purpose of this list is to discuss language

and language use. ALL uses of language are legitimate subjects for

study, analysis, and comment. I don't have to like a word or a subject

in order to learn about it, study it, or write about it.

I think knowledge is always better than censorship.



Jeutonne P. Brewer, Associate Professor

Department of English

University of North Carolina at Greensboro

Greensboro, NC 27412

email: jpbrewer[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]