Sunday, March 20, 2011

"What Happens in Vagueness Stays in Vagueness"

Clark Whelton, former speech writer for N.Y.C. mayors Ed Koch and Rudy Guiliani, laments the infantilization of spoken English in post-adult America.

In 1988, my elder daughter graduated from Vassar. During a commencement reception, I asked one of her professors if he’d noticed any change in Vassar students’ language skills. “The biggest difference,” he replied, “is that by the time today’s students arrive on campus, they’ve been juvenilized. You can hear it in the way they talk. There seems to be a reduced capacity for abstract thought.” He went on to say that immature speech patterns used to be drummed out of kids in ninth grade.
Progressivism?  Overbearing PC pieties?  The self-esteem movement?  Elongated adolescence?  Oprahfication and the feewings culture?  Helicopter parenting?  Take your pick.

Read the rest of the article at City Journal, and see if it resonates.  (Do you remember, like, up-talk?  J'yah.)

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