Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Coulter II

Geoff Pullum has posted some brief and (mostly) direct commentary over at Language Log about Ann Coulter's joke. Thank goodness "conversational implicature" made its way into my last post. Otherwise it could have sounded like the mistaken ramblings that incited Pullum to write.

The tone of his post sounds like he might disagree with some of what I say. He says that Coulter "mentions but does not use" the word. (This agrees with my post. It's the distinction I intended when speaking of "the difference between talking about a word and actually using the word.") I did claim however, that only linguists are adept at negotiating this difference. (Ok. Maybe the claim that "only linguists know how to do it" is too strong.) Pullum claims that "the remark is clever, funny, and highly indirect." I called it an "impotent jest" and opine the fragment "not very clever."

I'm right. The joke is too easy. Coulter certainly is not in a class with "Sarah Silverman, Howard Stern [or] Sacha Baron Cohen" as Pullum suggests. Well...okay. She might be in a class...like vertebrates. But she's not as clever funny talented original or interesting as they are.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for reaching out.

You can also contact me at wishydig[at]gmail[d0t]com.