1 2 3 4 5 Displaying 8-14 of 31 Articles

The makers of the critically acclaimed TV drama "Mad Men" pride themselves on their meticulous attention to authentic period detail, lovingly recreating the early 1960s world of Madison Avenue admen. The show's prop masters are charged with getting every little thing right, from the prices on receipts to the secretaries' restrictive undergarments. So it's always a bit of a surprise to discover an anachronism lurking on the "Mad Men" set. The most recent episode featured one such historical goof, though only die-hard dictionary buffs would have noticed.  Continue reading...
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Shannon Reed wraps up her summer of delving into literary and cinematic depictions of the classroom with appreciations of Half Nelson, Election, and The Class.

It's that time of year, folks. I've been watching the Facebook status updates as summer winds down for my friends across the country. First comes a note that there's only one week of summer left, then a sad little post about the last day of break, and then an update about the first day of school. Parents, teachers, students, people who can't wait for all of us to clear out of Starbucks between 9 and 3 — we all know it's here.  Continue reading...
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Blog Excerpts

Word Routes on Bloggingheads

If you enjoy reading Visual Thesaurus editor Ben Zimmer's Word Routes column, you'll want to check out his appearance on Bloggingheads. Ben discusses many past Word Routes topics, from Ms. to jazz to Cronkiters, with his brother, science writer Carl Zimmer.
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The fight over health care reform that has dominated American political discourse in recent months has often ended up as a fight about language. Let's take a look at some of the highly charged terms used by the supporters and opponents of President Obama's proposed health care initiatives.  Continue reading...
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The goal of the latest competition in Contest Corner was to link the words summer and break by clicking on the fewest number of related words in their Visual Thesaurus word maps.  Continue reading...
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Conflations

Fascinated by amalgamations like "green behind the ears"? How about "a wrench in the ointment" or "frothing at the bit"? Check out more of these idiom blends at Conflations: "Idiom conflation is a poetic art with a purpose."
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Yesterday, our Editorial Emergency crew Simon Glickman and Julia Rubiner offered up a great antidote to semicolon-phobia. "Once you understand their appeal," they advise, "semicolons can be addictive." Simon and Julia aren't the only ones singing the praises of this humble punctuation mark. Lately we've seen surprising expressions of affection for the semicolon, from New York to Paris.  Continue reading...
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1 2 3 4 5 Displaying 8-14 of 31 Articles