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War of Words – guest post


The following is a guest post written by Anupama Joshy, one of my former students. I asked her to write on this topic because of one of her casual remarks in a chat message.

Asked to introduce herself, following is what Anupama sent me.

Completed my lower primary education from The Bethlehem International. Middle school and high school from Carmel CMI Public School. Both in Vazhakulam where I have been residing. A second-year student of BA English Literature. Hobbies are reading, writing, watching movies and web shows.  Love spending time with friends and family. Trying to be a better person every day.

Words have evolved a lot through the generations. The archaic word 'thou' that meant 'you' can now be read 'though' in the gen-Z text slang. Means of communication have become online with emojis and GIFs serving as the medium of communication. People are hesitant to talk face to face and rather prefer 'chatting' online. 'Can't talk, WhatsApp only' has actually become the 'status'' of today's generation.

Memes, on the other hand are a means of expression. Now between 'communicating' and 'expressing', people have forgotten how to 'talk'. Let me rephrase. People have forgotten to talk. In most cases, they don't find it necessary to talk. One can always respond with a giphy instead of taking the effort of describing what they feel. It sure saves time, but doesn't it often lack clarity?

Even while texting, there is a war between words and acronyms, stickers and smileys. Looking at the old ways, one cannot help but wonder how people penned such beautiful verses exploring all human emotions. It isn't that they don't exist today, but somewhere between rap songs and remixes, they have lost their antique beauty. This of course, is how evolution works, but I believe everyone possesses a romantic part of themselves that inclines to a g(olden)-age-thinking, even 'thou' it's just another way of escaping the harsh reality we live in. 




 

Comments

  1. People settling down with gifs, making them lesser connected to words, giving out lower clarity whenever they need to speak up... like Anupama said, People do need to stop these and start talking again. Words are magical and when a gif replaces it's place, it's not just clarity that rules out, a part of themselves, their true expression to the spoken topic is out of the picture leaving themselves out by replacing a predicted emoji that doesn't say enough once one starts talking.

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    Replies
    1. It's good that Anupama opened this discussion. Let's hope this makes at least a few individuals think differently.

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  2. Hari OM
    Couldn't agree more, Anupama! Glad to see that you, at least, are willing to 'talk' 😀 (With thanks to your 'host'). YAM xx

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    1. Her eyes talk a lot more. They did in the classes too. Having her in class was sheer delight.

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  3. We as a society have lost the ability to imagine. We are outsourcing our imagination to content creators or meme makers. Texting always lacks a personal touch. One could be enraged, but you can put two smileys to make the conversation funny. It lacks sincerity, compassion, and honesty. Emojis, gifs and memes convey one's emotions. There is a reinforced fervent towards reading, not books, but reading between the lines. Texts have lost their face value.
    Oddly, memes and gifs provide you with something more. Plausible deniability. One could always take a safe stance. One could argue that it has resulted in faulty interpretation or was sent by mistake. Both are not possible in face-to-face conversation. With words, you always have to own up to them. And having an eye-to-eye conversation with someone makes you bold, daring and courageous these days.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Jojo, for adding substantially to the discussion. Emojis and memes make life a lot easier but hollow. The question probably is whether anyone cares for depth anymore.

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