Vic163 Notes - November 22 2012.pdf

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University of Toronto St. George
Victoria College Courses
Anne Urbancic

Qwfwq - a fun way to look at Derrida and stuff? Thomas's Presentation: Slang - what is slang? what isn't it? controversial - no such thing as "a slang" but rather many different types of slang - a register of words that are outside the accepted norm - if there was only one slang, it wouldn't really be "slang" - slang is a set of words used by certain groups that prevent others from understanding them - purposefully or not - "argot" - differance + slang - slang is a group of signifiers and signifieds that defer radically from the average set that most people have - you either have a new signified - use an existing word and give it a new meaning - or create a new signifier and give it whatever meaning you want - slang is "scattered" in two ways - it scatters meaning across language by creating more signs while not adding anything new (way of making language more cryptic) - it also IS scattered, when it becomes better known and the meaning dilutes in popular culture - slang defers meaning - when you use slang you defer meaning - you expect the person you are speaking to to know and understand what you are saying - this creates a segregated space - slang can be aged - e.g. chat speak - slang is as old as language - it is always already there - slang is more commonly segregated by profession - usually called jargon (medical jargon, semiotics jargon) - jargon reserves a space to people who have studied the subject extensively - slang is segregated by its context - it is not used in certain spaces - e.g. academic, you don't use slang - slang is cultured - ghettos have different slangs from people who live downtown - British vs. American slang - slang as a space imposes conditions of the "other" - responsibility to the other - slang can create a gap between people - slang starts as a tactic - uses language and subverts it for a different purpose - but often becomes a strategy after a while - e.g. pig latin - slang is always being created as old words become obsolete - there is a huge mess of words that are constantly being recreated - slang is very prominent - it is always changing but it is always there - it is in constant flux - investigating slang is essentially investigating our society - slang words that don't look like slang but are slang - e.g. when a doctor calls you "dear" - this establishes a social hierarchy - also in the legal arena, when a lawyer says "my esteemed colleague" but means the opposite SPACES OF LEISURE - playing with spaces - also playing with spaces the way that Derrida may have envisaged it - creating meaning out of our leisure time - leftover time that didn't have meaning - but it can't not have meaning, because we are always doing something - Baudrillard also comes in here - also de Certeau - Travels in Hyper-Reality: you think that our world is constructed on facsimiles, but really it is constructed on fac-differences - the idea that leisure time is going to be different from other times in our lives - re-constructive mania - our society has a true "horror vacui" - a fear of noth
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