Saturday, January 14, 2006


The 2005 word of the year, as announced by the American Dialect Society, is "truthiness", in the new dictionary sense invented by Stephen Colbert.

Chris, of Mixing Memory takes a look at it from a cognitive linguistic perspective:

"Truthy, not facty" strikes me as a pretty good way of describing the way we usually think about things. Most of the time, when we're thinking about the world, we're not trying to determine whether the information we're receiving from it is factual, but instead working to integrate it with the representations we've already got. The information that we're likely to notice, and keep, is just the information that fits with those representations, regardless of whether that information happens to fit with the facts. If something is truthy because it fits with our beliefs, but not with facts, then a lot of what we'll end up believing with be truthy, not facty. It's because of this that you get things like cognitive dissonance or the confirmation bias. Those involve searching for and emphasizing truthiness over factiness.
Then he takes a look at Lakoff and the art of political spin. Read the rest...

posted by Bora Zivkovic @ 3:28 AM | permalink | (1 comments) | Post a Comment | permalink