Terms that put the “man” in “portmanteau” tend to catch on because they describe a behavior that men (usually) adopt unconsciously and that women (usually) find annoying or (sometimes) offensive. They cheekily point out microaggressions—a term coined by the Harvard professor Chester Pierce in the ‘70s to describe insults inflicted on African-Americans, but extended since then to indict all forms of privilege being wantonly wielded—and ask the subjects of their verbs to check, or at least acknowledge, that privilege. As language, they’re prescriptive as well as descriptive: They both describe a behavior and strongly advise against it. They hint at that the troubling fact that privilege tends to be highly apparent to everyone except the people who enjoy it.

–Megan Garber on manverbing.

2017-07-17T11:25:47+00:003rd March, 2015|Tags: culture, language|Comments Off on Manverbing.