Once a year, the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) releases its “Word of The Year.” This year the word is “toxic,” which the dictionary defines as “poisonous.”
This word choice matters because the OED is considered the most widely used authority on the English language. It currently covers over 600,000 words, with definitions, pronunciations and origins.
The word was picked for several reasons. Among them, the number of times it was looked up this year rose 45% at Oxford Dictionaries online. The editors also pointed out that the word was picked because it is “judged to reflect the ethos, mood, or preoccupations of the passing year, and have lasting potential as a term of cultural significance.”
The OED editors also described the origin of the word. It was first used in the mid-17th century. It derives from the medieval Latin “toxicus,” which means “poisoning” or “imbued with poison.”
The OED found that 10 words are most often used with toxic. These are, in order of absolute frequency: “chemical,” “masculinity,” “substance,” “gas,” “environment,” “relationship,” “culture,” “waste,” “algae” and “air.” Among the reasons these words have been paired with “toxic” is heavy coverage of a toxic chemical used to poison a retired Russian intelligence officer in the United Kingdom. Another is the use of “toxic waste” as an issue that part of the general public has brought up with governments around the world. “Toxic masculinity” has been tied to the #MeToo movement. Continue reading Word of the Year 2018: Toxic→
漫威漫画超级英雄系列之神力侠 Luke Cage 第二季已完结。这部由华裔女演员 刘玉玲Lucy Liu 导演的美剧，集漫画、暴力、音乐、黑人英雄于一体，讲述了卢克-凯奇在一次监狱实验中意外地获得了刀枪不入、力大无穷的天赋异禀，出狱后在纽约市黑人聚集地哈莱姆区重拾生活，被迫与他所在城市的核心人物展开斗争。第二季出现了可怕的新敌人巨蝮蛇Bushmaster, 以及统治者Mariah 的女儿Tilda. 季末，Tilda 以蜘蛛之吻毒杀了自己的母亲，结束了Mariah 的统治，清声弹唱了一曲 Family First, 应景应情，感人肺腑。此剧吸引我的正是剧中洋溢着的这种黑人蓝调爵士音乐，不仅是因为漫威的超级英雄情结。