Will the OED Canonize New Trump Words?
Electric Lit relies on contributions from our readers to help make literature more exciting, relevant, and inclusive. Please support our work by becoming a member today, or making a one-time donation here.
The famed dictionary is interested in documenting neologisms associated with the President and his brand of bigoted leadership.
It’s only fitting that a President who champions made-up facts would inspire a bevy of made-up words, each of them striving to describe some aspect of the lunacy that is Donald J. Trump. According to the Guardian, the famed Oxford English Dictionary has taken notice of these terms and added several to a watchlist of words under consideration for the dictionary’s next update.
The Trumpisms gaining the most widespread traction include:
— Trumponomics — a reference to the President’s alleged economic policy
— Trumpertantrum — tweeting lewd lies in the day’s wee small hours
— Trumpkin — Jack-’o-anterns bearing his unfortunate visage
— Trumpflation — the coming currency disaster
— Trumpist — a Trump supporter
— Trumpette — a woman who supports Trump
— Trumpista — a Latina Trump supporter
2016’s political dumpster fire resulted in “Brexit” and “alt-right” finding their way into the dictionary — why not a few more to round things out?
Not all the slang currently up for OED consideration is a play on Trump’s name. “Healther,” a term that riffs on the “birther” conspiracy theory, is in the mix (according to the Guardian — “a person who believes that Hillary Clinton has a serious, undisclosed illness”). However, lexicographers doubt this lingo will be relevant for much longer given the results of the election.
During the campaign, Trump was quoted as saying, “I went to an Ivy League school. I’m very highly educated. I know words, I have the best words…but there is no better word than stupid. Right?” He happened to be referencing the State Department’s endeavor to provide aid and relief to Syria. But in light of this weekend’s events, I’d have to agree with him…there truly is no better word than stupid to describe our freshly inaugurated President. It seems there may be a few new synonyms for his particular brand of stupid.