semantic satiation n. A peculiar sense of loss of meaning that occurs when a word is recited slowly 15 or 20 times in succession. 1
Here is an excellent example for you. To Mr. Griffith (and his legal team), I’ll be more than happy to remove this image if you have any objections.
recidivism Reversion to an undesirable behavior pattern, such as committing another criminal offense after punishment or becoming drug-dependent again after an apparent cure of addiction. 2
And what words do we like to repeat? Ones that pop up frequently include “Yemen,” “Rococo,” and, erm, “semantic satiation.” Well, I also enjoy “brick tong,” but that doesn’t appear in our library catalog.
And in case you were wondering, this is a brick tong.
What words and phrases get stuck in your head?
1 “semantic satiation” n. A Dictionary of Psychology. Edited by Andrew M. Colman. Oxford University Press 2009. Oxford Reference Online. Oxford University Press. Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. 12 September 2011 <http://www.oxfordreference.com/views/ENTRY.html?subview=Main&entry=t87.e7462>
2 “recidivism” A Dictionary of Public Health. Ed. John M. Last, Oxford University Press, 2007. Oxford Reference Online. Oxford University Press. Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. 12 September 2011 <http://www.oxfordreference.com/views/ENTRY.html?subview=Main&entry=t235.e3825>