“The ramblings and grumblings of author Ad Hudler”

A New Word! Now ... if only I knew what it meant!
Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Now and then even an author comes across a word that sends him running to the dictionary (and, yes, I still prefer my 4-inch-thick Websters to dictionary.com ... though I do use the latter as well).

This was in a story published in The Economist, which is my family's newsweekly magazine of choice. It's published in Britain though has a large section of American news, and it's the best written, most thoughtful journalism out there today.

At any rate, in a story about the Olympics, a writer called Canada "a fissiparous country often seemingly racked by self-doubt."

Websters defines it as "reproducing by fission."

Okay, then, that sure tells me a lot. Thanks, guys.

Any ideas on this one? And BTW: It's pronounced fih-SIPP-er-ous.


2 Comments:

Anonymous Josephine said...

Politically speaking the word can mean divisive or factious (like the Tea Party folks within the Republican Party). Recently NPR used a word I had never heard before in a story they had about a chicken. The word was "gynandromorph". Of course I tried to come up with a way to drop it into conversation but failed.

March 24, 2010 at 10:46 AM  
Blogger Ad Hudler said...

Thanks, Josephine....but I don't think of Canadians in that way, do you? They've got that french-anti-frenchie thing going on, but they seem like a happy lot.

March 24, 2010 at 12:15 PM  

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