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The misuse of language and Brexit

Two words 'populist' and 'illiberal' are being used by those enraged by the words and actions of Trump and Brexiteers

Illustration: binay sinha
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Illustration: binay sinha

Deepak Lal
In Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass, we read “When I use a word”, Humpty Dumpty said in a rather scornful voice “it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less”. This Humpty Dumpty adage is now rife in what we read in the print media, hear on radio and see on our TV screens. This Newspeak, as I had argued in an earlier column (“Rights, stakes and Newspeak”, February 18, 2012) is an avenue (and mask) for sloppy thinking. It has become rampant with the Trump and Brexit traumas in the US and the
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First Published: Jul 31 2019 | 12:38 AM IST

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