Archive for the ‘Language and gender’ Category

Blue and black at the Gamble Garden

August 15, 2019

In anticipation of a visit to Palo Alto’s Gamble Garden with motss.conners on Saturday, two items from my last visit to the garden (on 7/31): blue flax-lilies, which are neither flax nor lily plants, but do have bright blue berries; and dark purple, almost black, hollyhocks.

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Revisiting 27: Lilo, Stitch, Bouba, and Kiki

March 25, 2019

Mike Pope on Facebook, following up on my posting of the 25th “Lilo & Stitch”, with a question about the naming of the characters in the movie:


(#1) Stitch and Lilo

MP: Do you think the animators consciously followed a kiki/bouba paradigm?

AZ:  Almost surely not consciously; they just chose names that “sounded right” to them.

In general, writers’ name choices for fictitious characters are inscrutable in detail; even if the writers have an explicit account of where the names came from, unconscious preferences for certain kinds of names can usually be seen to be at play.

One of these preferences is the bouba/kiki effect, which has to do with the visual appearance of the referents (see the images above). Also involved are effects having to do with the gender of the referents (Stitch is male, Lilo female). No doubt there are more.

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Lilo & Stitch

March 23, 2019

Today’s morning name. I really have no idea why. I haven’t even seen the movie and was only vaguely aware of its theme. Maybe the sound-symbolic values of the names, the contrast between the /l/s of Lilo, voiced liquids, symbolically flowing; and the /s t č/ of Stitch, all voiceless obstruents, symbolically spiky and aggressive. And the /aj/ of Lilo, long and with a low nuclear F2; versus the /ɪ/ of Stitch, quite short and with a very high F2. Lilo is female, human, and family-oriented; Stitch is male, alien, and destructive.

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On the doo-wop gender train from the past

November 11, 2018

Going the Facebook rounds:

the song that was number 1 on your 14th birthday defines your life

(pretty clearly intended: #1 in the US — though you could certainly carp about that)

Hey nonny ding dong: it’s “Sh-Boom (Life Could Be a Dream)” as recorded by the Crew-Cuts in 1954.


(#1) Trading card photo of The Crew-Cuts. In 1957, Topps gum cards issued a series of movie stars, television stars and recording stars.

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Another ubertwink

October 5, 2018

(Discussion of men’s bodies and mansex in very plain terms, photos of naked, though not quite X-rated, men, so not at all for kids or the sexually modest.)

Liam Riley, actually an ubertwink we’ve seen before, but now — to celebrate the completion of a “Twinks” Page on this blog (with links to postings on twink as a body type, a persona, and a sexual identity) — viewed in conjunction with his CockyBoys stable-mate Levi Karter.

Levi and Liam, Levis and lace, (more) butch and (more) femme, twink and near-twink (more muscles, swimmer body type). Both playful, affectionate, and (professionally) adorable. And competitors in the Ace Ass department.

For comparison: Levi left and Liam right:

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volumptuous

August 22, 2018

That’s the portmanteau in yesterday’s Luann strip:

voluminous + voluptuous, probably with a bit of sumptuous mixed in — but certainly ample heft combined with sensuousness. Not a waif, and not any typical fashion model.

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bossercize

May 26, 2018

Today’s Dilbert, in which the pointy-haired boss goes portmanteauing:

(#1)

boss + exercise (in a spelling variant with –ize) = bossercize, formed on the model of the name of the dance fitness company Jazzercise.

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A bread maker, Alan?

March 20, 2018

A Xmas card from Ann Burlingham, sent from Queensland:

Marital relations among the penguins

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Divine Bodies

March 20, 2018

At the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco:

(#1)

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Call me by your name

March 1, 2018

The Mother Goose and Grimm, from February 21st:

(#1)

A joke playing on use and mention: Grimmy mentions the name of the Oscar-nominated movie Call Me by Your Name, but Ralph understands him to be using the expression call me your your name, so he calls Grimmy Ralph.

That leads us to the movie and so to a thicket of issues about language, sexuality, gender, and the law.

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