Rebecca Solnit's 2008 essay "Men who explain things" popularized the concept and the general awareness of this gentlemanly practice, but the word itself was not used therein. Instead, "Mansplain" was apparently first uttered on Livejournal a few weeks later by phosfate, a now-vanished psuedonymous user. This is revealed in Merriam-Webster's new official definition, crediting Know your Meme for the discovery. [via Kottke]
The splain of mansplain isn't new. It's been used to mean "explain" in texts showing informal speech or—as when Ricky Ricardo admonished his beloved in I Love Lucy—in imperfect English for at least a century. Since the advent and consequent blossoming of mansplain, splain has been attached to other morphemes to create words modeled on mansplain. Mother Jones put the word leftsplaining into the headline of an article by none other than Rebecca Solnit (about how people on the political left should stop expounding on the failings of lefties to fellow lefties). A politician under the mistaken impression that potlucks are a unique Iowa tradition was accused of potluck-splaining when he tried to illuminate non-Iowans on how the communal meals work.
I like to write letters. Theselokta notecards are my favorite. I usually keep a few styles of lokta paper notecards around. The butterflies are particularly lovely and encourage me to find green ink. Usually, I write with Noodler’s Heart of Darkness, and ink that is designed to stand the test of time. Lokta paper is […]
Diamond and Silk are a social media duo famous for supporting Trump and claiming, without evidence, that Facebook “censored” them. Wonkette is a news, politics and culture website. Bianca DeLaRosa writes for it, and recently offered the opinion that Diamond and Silk were notable as “Black White Nationalists” due to their support of Trump’s policies […]
My In-Laws Are Careless About My Deadly Food Allergy is a letter sent in to The Cut’s Ask Polly column. It’s the second-most amazing agony aunt letter I’ve ever read. I have a very severe allergy to mushrooms … Since then, most meals we have shared at my in-laws’ house have had very limited options […]
Can’t sit still during the pandemic? You’re not alone. Many folks are using their social distancing time to decompress and zone out on Tiger King, some even pushing back against the idea of being productive. But plenty of others find themselves bored, restless, and in need of projects and goals, somewhere to direct their energy. […]
Even if you don’t miss much else about the office right now, there’s a good chance your home laptop is making you nostalgic for the added efficiency of that pair of monitors on your desk at work to spread out your workflow. There’s no telling how long the new normal may continue to be the […]
If you’re looking to become a software engineer or it’s an idea you’ve tossed around half-seriously, there may be no better time than now to take the leap. It’s one of the fastest-growing, most in-demand roles already. And in the midst of the pandemic, between the extra hours you likely have in your day, and […]