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Jan 5, 2015
This week’s theme
Words relating to books

This week’s words
bildungsroman
longueur
peripeteia
locus classicus
litterateur

Huck Finn
Cover of the 1st edition of Huck Finn
Photo: Wikimedia

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

According to the American Time Use Survey, an average American watches about three hours of television a day. As I rarely turn on the TV, there must be someone somewhere who is making up for my slack by watching six hours a day. Whoever this person is: Thank you!

According to the same survey, average reading is less than an hour. Well, maybe there’s a way I can pay back this person.

This reminds me of my childhood when my mother used to scold me, “Don’t read so much, you’ll ruin your eyes! Go watch some TV instead!”

This week we’ll look at five words related to books. May you never be without books in the new year.

PS: I’m not such a TV slacker if you include watching the occasional Daily Show clip online.

bildungsroman

PRONUNCIATION:
(BIL-doongz-roh-mahn, -doongks-)

MEANING:
noun: A novel concerned with the maturing of someone from childhood to adulthood.
Example: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain.

ETYMOLOGY:
From German, from Bildung (education, formation) + Roman (novel), from French roman (novel). Earliest documented use: 1910.

USAGE:
“Divided into three parts, the bildungsroman follows Lizzie from her teenage years in a Catholic boarding school to a summer in Paris as an au pair, to her first year of freedom as an adult in Dublin.”
Sarah Gilmartin; A Woman’s Take on Chauvinistic and Grim 1970s Ireland; The Irish Times (Dublin); Dec 6, 2014.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
Fear prophets and those prepared to die for the truth, for as a rule they make many others die with them, often before them, at times instead of them. -Umberto Eco, philosopher and novelist (b. 5 Jan 1932)

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