The instability of meaning in metapragmatic neologisms


  • Judith Bridges University of South Florida



Neologisms, -splain, polysemy, normativity, metapragmatics, Morphopragmatics, citizen sociolinguistics, prescriptivism 2.0, ventriloquation, catchphrase culture


In this response I address the discussion notes written in reply to my focus article, “Explaining -splain in digital discourse.” In the remarks from Andrea R. Leone-Pizzighella, Bárbara Marqueta Gracia, Chaim Noy, François Cooren, Barbara Fultner, and Ursula Lutzky and Robert Lawson, some common themes emerged regarding the instability of meanings, how we treat neologisms, and some research methods for understanding the equivocal nature of me­tapragmatic neologisms. My reply addresses these issues. With the intent to accomplish the sort of productive, interdisciplinary conversation that Language Under Discussion promotes, I hope my reflection and final contribution helps us better understand language and communication.

Author Biography

Judith Bridges, University of South Florida

Department of World Languages




How to Cite

Bridges, J. (2023). The instability of meaning in metapragmatic neologisms. Language Under Discussion, 6(1), 68–77.