Saturday, November 20, 2004

Bunny hugs and superpowers

Don't panic - a bunny hug is not some perverse activity to go with last week's nude Scrabble concept... It's the phrase used in Saskatchewan, Canada, for a hoody! Isn't it fab?! In my mind's eye all the goths and sk8rboys of the world are now walking round in black "bunny hugs", all warm and fluffy and cosy... It's so incongruous that this little phrase could cause a fashion revolution!

Anyway, check it out in the link below - it's all about the new dictionary of Canadian words. This offers interesting insights into the world of lexicography. A must-have career choice, surely - wandering round the world reading junk and getting paid for it? It's my idea of heaven! It's also interesting because it distinguishes Canadian English very clearly from American English, whereas many people here tend to lump the two together because they aren't attuned to the differences. And with 648 references in the dictionary to skate, skating or hockey, you start to build an idea of the interesting connections between language and Canadian identity...

Made-In-Canada words get dictionary backing

The second link also concerns the development of international varieties of English. You may remember the post a little while back about David Crystal's tour of India. Well, in this article, the great man writes about his experiences there. It's a fascinating piece - he explores both synchronic and diachronic variations in Indian English, and gives the reasons why he thinks Indian English is well on the way to becoming a linguistic superpower.

Subcontinent raises its voice