Politics, Philosophy, Polemics

Lenny’s Lexicon

In Hitchens, Trotskyism, U.K. Left on February 23, 2013 at 6:30 PM

This is a cross post. It was originally posted on Harry’s Place on February 21st 2013, 7:22 pm

On his own blog Richard Seymour uses the nom de plume, “Lenin.” Because I do not think he would have the guts to murder as many people as his hero, I prefer the nickname “Lenny.”

I have previously mentioned that his recent book, The Trial of Christopher Hitchens, is not worth reviewing. It has been reviewed elsewhere. What is noticeable, and not surprising to anyone who has read it, is that Seymour’s prose is often commented upon, and not in a  positive way. “Awkwardly freighted with four-dollar words,” was how Colin Woodard,  the reviewer for the Washington Post put it. The prose was “tediously inflated” according to George Eaton in the New Statesman. Stephen Robinson, in the Sunday Times, thought Seymour’s writing style “embarrassing.” He rhetorically asked, “Would anyone with English as a first language suggest [one of Hitchens’s books] should be classed as ‘a somewhat opuscular component of the Hitchensian oeuvre?’”I am sure there are further examples.

To save you reading the book, and I can assure you it is not worthwhile reading, if you want to know some of the words that he uses that leads people to ridicule him, below I provide a lexicon of “four-dollar words” from The Trial of Christopher Hitchens, together with a page reference.

Adamantine p.25
Alarums p.54
Asseverations p.60
Augury p.43
Comity p.47
Concupiscence p.25
Confraternity p.xii, p.37
Cynosures p.xviii
Diapason p.86
Eristic p.57
Fealties p.3
Filiations p.33
Hermeneutical p.36
Idiolect p.xxiii
Integument p.103
Isomorphic p.54
Mugwump p.x
Opuscular p.xxiiii
Ouvrieriste italicised p.xii not italicised p.xxii, p.22
Paladins p.3
Puissance p.68
Recusant p.4
Segued p.55
Serried p.22
Sodality p.xix
Suppuration p.29
Tomecide p.56
Yawped p.73


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