Blogger Neologism Watch

OK, this one also comes from Ann Althouse’s blog, though it’s attributable more accurately to commenter “EnigmatiCore” in response to a request for a good word for “a misquote that becomes more of a famous quotation than the original.”

Ann’s neologism request was spurred by the SNL skit in which Tina Fey debuted her much-awaited impression of Sarah Palin (and yes, she is every bit the dead ringer everyone expected).  Ms. Fey’s line, “I can see Russia from my house,” is one that Ann says she tends to remember now more easily than the actual quote from Palin, “They’re our next door neighbors and you can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska.”  Another example, recalled by another commenter, is Al Gore’s “I invented the Internet” from the 2000 election, which in Gore’s actual words was more along the lines of, “I took the initiative in creating the Internet.”

EnigmatiCore suggests we call such a misquote Malapropaganda. I like it; it incorporates the element of misspeaking inherent in a “malapropism,” though it turns the definition on its head by involving someone else putting the misspeech in the speaker’s mouth (intentionally or otherwise) and convincing others it’s the original, recalling the deceptive nature of “propaganda.”  A portmanteau for the ages!

(NOTE: Althouse commenter “dcbyron” also suggests Substiquote, which definitely gets points for cleverness, though I think EnigmatiCore’s contribution is more inventive and memorable.)


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