Monday, November 28, 2005

The Best Best Word Book Ever


Flickr user Kokogiak has uploaded compare-contrast split shots (via Sivacracy) of pages from the 1963 and 1991 versions of Richard Scarry's Best Word Book Ever. The biggest changes? More men doing housework and more women in more professions, even if that just means the addition of a yellow bow; more multiculturalism, as exemplified by the additional Chanukah-observing mice seen above; and more white-collar professionals. Althouse's eponymous author thinks this is politically-correct prescriptivism. My bet is that it's closer to descriptivism. Ann Bartow thinks it's descriptivism, but driven by the pursuit of consumption. I think it makes a cool Flickr set.

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Image credits: Best Word Book Ever - Chanukah, copyright kokogiak and the author and publisher of Richard Scarry's Best Word Book Ever, borrowed for news-reporting and comment purposes.


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