[Humanist] 25.550 what's in a name

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Tue Dec 13 07:51:37 CET 2011


                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 25, No. 550.
            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
                       www.digitalhumanities.org/humanist
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org



        Date: Mon, 12 Dec 2011 09:36:32 -0800 (PST)
        From: Laval Hunsucker <amoinsde at yahoo.com>
        Subject: Re: [Humanist] 25.548 what's in a name?
        In-Reply-To: <20111212095315.C4BDC231420 at woodward.joyent.us>


> Unfortunately . . . he does not consider "-ies", but his article
> does point to the fact that our current name is a collective
> noun, plural in form, singular in meaning.

Unfortunately I can not quickly find in his article where he does
this, but no matter.

This seems to be the season for "splendid isolation", if you'll
forgive the topical political allusion -- and maybe we should
just revel in our own variety of that. Or is there in fact *another*
"-ies" out there among academic/scholarly/scientific/technical
pursuits ?  ( Outside, I suppose, of a possible residual category
of "Sundries" :-). )

A quick look informs me that there are, according to the OED,
728 "-ologies", from "Abiology" to "Zygology", and 441 "-ics",
from "Acoustics" to "Wave Mechanics".

Being a (near-)loner in this environment may have its own certain
chic, if not practical advantage, I guess.


- Laval Hunsucker
  Breukelen, Nederland


>________________________________
> From: Humanist Discussion Group <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>
>To: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org 
>Sent: Monday, December 12, 2011 10:53 AM
>Subject: [Humanist] 25.548 what's in a name?
> 
>                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 25, No. 548.
>            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
>                      www.digitalhumanities.org/humanist
>                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org
>
>
>
>        Date: Mon, 12 Dec 2011 09:52:09 +0000
>        From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>
>        Subject: -ology and -ics
>
>We have perhaps completed our adolescent phase of worrying over what we 
>call our academic field, but in case not, and for those to whom it 
>matters, I pass on a reference to an entertaining discussion of the 
>suffixes "-ology" and "ics" by Anatol Rapoport, "What is semantics?", 
>American Scientist 40.1 (1952): 123-35, found in JSTOR. For those 
>curious about the man, his Wikipedia entry is the place to go. 
>Unfortunately for us now, as we construct our professional identity, he 
>does not consider "-ies", but his article does point to the fact that 
>our current name is a collective noun, plural in form, singular in meaning.
>
>Yours,
>WM
>-- 
>Professor Willard McCarty, Department of Digital Humanities, King's 
>College London; Professor (fractional), University of Western Sydney; 
>Editor, Interdisciplinary Science Reviews (www.isr-journal.org); Editor, 
>Humanist (www.digitalhumanities.org/humanist/); www.mccarty.org.uk/





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