MetaTalk, much? March 16, 2019 4:56 PM   Subscribe

The March issue of Language, the journal of the Linguistics Society of America, features a citation of a past MetaTalk on the use of the X-much construction on MetaFilter by cortex.

An earlier, preprint, non-paywalled version of the article, "Expressive Updates, Much?" by Daniel Gutzmann and Robert Henderson can be found here.
posted by damayanti to MetaFilter-Related at 4:56 PM (17 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

Neat!
posted by nangar at 5:43 PM on March 16


Much, much?
posted by mochapickle at 6:46 PM on March 16 [1 favorite]


The paper also cites MeFi's languagehat for writing of his found off of MetaFilter.
posted by Jahaza at 7:03 PM on March 16 [2 favorites]


What we need is an analysis of the career of Richard Belzer's detective character on Homicide (7 seasons) and SVU (15 seasons) plus in-character guest appearances on other Law & Order spin-offs, The Wire, X-Files, Arrested Development and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, making him the longest-running character in the history of television (beating Marshall Matt Dillon and Frasier Crane)... Munch Much?
posted by oneswellfoop at 7:15 PM on March 16 [9 favorites]


I started skimming that paper but it was (hah) too much
"much" and now I am seriously having trouble actually comprehending sentences I read with that word in them.
posted by traveler_ at 7:34 PM on March 16 [1 favorite]


What kind of place is this? Linguistic statistical analysis, cats, music, poetry, questions, answers, and 895 instances of angst with regard to the consumption of muffins, never too much water under any one bridge.
posted by Oyéah at 8:05 PM on March 16 [5 favorites]


Linguistic statistical analysis, cats, music, poetry, questions, answers, and 895 instances of angst with regard to the consumption of muffins,

...and don't forget poop and other bodily output. And pop culture critiques, but that's kind of redundant.
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:14 PM on March 16 [4 favorites]


Pedants without journal access: relax, Metafilter is spelt with the usual number of letters in the published version of the article.
posted by zamboni at 9:29 PM on March 16 [1 favorite]


This much.
posted by clavdivs at 9:39 PM on March 16 [1 favorite]


Interesting study. Haven't finished it all, and I'm no linguist so some of the jargon is over my head, but the rest is fascinating. I didn't notice them covering the use of "much" that doesn't have rising intonation, acting as more a like declarative in a similar manner to x-much does with rising intonation.

Something like "John doesn't drink..." "Much". Where a delay and lowered intonation either in a reply or from the same speaker can act to cancel the apparent meaning of the beginning claim by reversing it through sarcasm.

My figuring has always been that the "much" construction is a conditional claim/question, where the point is in noting the fact of the instance and questioning whether that is a permanent state or just something of the moment. Angry, much? in that sense doesn't allow for denial of being angry, but could still be answered by denying it as a defining characteristic, like "not really, but that guy pissed me off." The reversal in the sarcastic "much" then would be making a defining claim fitting its lowered intonation. But I ain't no linguist so what do I know? Not much...
posted by gusottertrout at 10:28 PM on March 16


I passionately blame Joss Whedon and Buffy for the existence of this construction but have only anecdata.
posted by Going To Maine at 10:49 PM on March 16 [3 favorites]


tl;dr because reasons.
posted by flabdablet at 5:45 AM on March 17 [2 favorites]


We can identify this example as a joke because, like many such examples, it is accompanied by the “laugh until crying” emoji.

God bless academic writing
posted by vibratory manner of working at 12:38 PM on March 17 [4 favorites]


oh wait it got better

The author does not mean to claim that the subject of the photo, a second person who is tagged, is cool and has style. In fact, he clearly does not.
posted by vibratory manner of working at 12:39 PM on March 17 [4 favorites]


Ha, neat!
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:19 PM on March 17


Much!
Though, much much's must much out, further much, much more much to much out.
posted by clavdivs at 7:50 PM on March 17 [1 favorite]


"Oh no, I've said too much"
posted by clavdivs at 7:51 PM on March 17 [1 favorite]


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