Sexual Undertones in the Words Added to American Dictionaries
Sep 14, 2011, 08:15 ET
PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Every year, America's largest dictionary companies come together to determine which words have caught on in American English and are being used regularly in everyday life.
This year brings some funny and unexpected words, including:
Bromance: a close, nonsexual friendship between men. "Bromance is a funny word," say Agnes Barnes, editor at Portland Word Smiths, "in that it takes elements of a traditional relationship and merges them into a non-sexual relationship. In other words, these men in a 'bromance' have some qualities that make them appear like a couple to outsiders, such as how they squabble or how they understand each others' preferences on a deep level."
Cougar: Typically describes a middle-aged woman that pursues younger men sexually. "There is definitely a vixenish, promiscuous connotation to this word that is hard to ignore," comments Ms. Barnes.
Vaping: Taking inhalations from an electric device that looks like a cigarette but is in reality a metal tube that delivers water vapor and nicotine as a cigarette substitute.
"The popularity of Smoketip.com and other American ecig companies has reached the tipping point and people needed a way to describe what they are actually doing with these cigarette substitutes that have neither tobacco nor smoke in them," says Ms. Barnes.
Boomerang Child: A child or generation of children that circle back to their parents' homes after graduating from college for an indefinite term. "Boomerang child is a word that is a product of the financial collapse and college grads just having a hard time finding full-time work, but there are undertones of kids that are not yet mature who still need parental involvement," says Ms. Barnes.
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