The Heterodox

The Heterodox

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The Crime of Being a Logophile

September 7, 2010 , , , , ,

I will have to concede here at the beginning that the following notion that I am going to critique does not get hurled at me very often. Nonetheless, it a criticism that I find a bit perplexing, ridiculous, as well as intellectually soporific whenever I am accused of it. Believe me, I can fully appreciate that my writing can be esoteric at times and yes, even a tad nubilous (never intensionally I hope it is clear) . Yet there is no way anyone can convince me that this is a crime or a sign of weakness in my writing. I am a lover of words and language and I feel I have no reason to exhort a justification for this logophilia. I have noticed throughout my life that Americans have this strange propensity for the derision of the spoken word and tend to abhor or be suspicious of any sign of hyperarticulacy. Your average American will also contend that this supposed elitist loquacity is a penchant much more appropriate to the British tongue and is heartily Unamerican. It seems that America’s dulcet tones are expected to be rooted in the ungrammatical. An extra irony that is found in holding this conceit is that most Americans also think that the British have an accent when in point of fact it is we Americans who have the accent, along with the Canadians, Aussies, and Kiwis. Let us not forget where the language originates from.

This anti-logophilia I am sure is related to the common suspicious outlook on intellectuals and practitioners of acumen that the American bourgeois exude. This is where the epithet of elitist often comes to the fore. I feel that being a lover of words is exactly like being in love with learning and self-improvement in general; it is a virtuous and noble state of being no matter how punctilious the endeavor may become. So, for example, there is no reason to defend the ridicule so many of us heaped onto Sarah Palin because of her regularly displayed malapropisms. There also is no reason to fear that harboring such an opinion might deem one unduly an elitist simply for going against the current populism and dubious public wisdom. America has now undergone such a degeneration of education for so long, that anyone self taught and disciplined in their educational efforts can be sneered at for exhibiting articulacy. This is a plaintive state of affairs that is always worth one’s loathing.

So, if you are someone like me who loves language, words, and every aspect of knowledge related to them, stand tall and proud and never become recumbent to criticism for that posturing. If the American educational system was not so negligent in their duties, I doubt I would have to bring this contention to the blogosphere to begin with. Rest assured that no one can or will ever be able to make me complacent with cliche and mediocre syntax. If having these kind of standards makes me a snob, then so be it. Notwithstanding this, If I am ever being too pedantic or committing too much pleonasm, I am more than able to take editorial criticism, especially if I can be shown that it will improve my ideas. When it comes down to it though, I write for myself and no one else. I feel in the end as long as you are committed to intellectual honesty and integrity, others will always be drawn to your ideas. This is the level of respect that I will always contend for my readers. If anyone is ultimately repined by these commitments, then all I can say is fuck ’em. See, I too can indulge in the people’s patois.

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