Monday, August 8, 2011

gaucherie



gaucherie [ˌgoʊʃəˈri] n.

1.) An awkward or tactless act, manner, or expression.
2.) A lack of tact; awkwardness (American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language).

Etymology: French, from gauche, awkward, lefthanded, from Old French, from gauchir, to turn aside, walk clumsily. Of Germanic origin.

"The ideas of gaucherie and that of the Primitive are so inseparable that when a modern artist draws with a true naivete, when he paints as he feels, and throws out accepted formulae—which themselves do not imply that he will create beauty—one accuses him of both anarchism and gaucherie" ("De la gaucherie des Primitifs", Maurice Denis, 1904, translation from Cézanne's Bathers: Biography and the Erotics of Paint, Aruna D'Souza, 2008).

(Portret van Giovanni Arnolfini en zijn vrouw, Johannes de Eyck, 1434)
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It's time to announce the winner of this week's Climbing the Mountain challenge. It's...JayJay! She wrote:
There was something about the way he acted. He had about him an echt sense of his own identity which made me feel relaxed in his presence. Though his conversations dipped into an almost prolix state from time to time it wasn't enough to make me worry. There was, however, the incident where he referred to me as a virago but the sly smile that made its way onto the corner of his mouth, eo ipso, made everything okay. It was never the surfeit of passion that made me leave.
Well done, JayJay. I debated this one for a while, because jos xx and shari also had very strong entries, but ultimately JayJay's use of "eo ipso" won it for her, I think (I will always be partial to the philosophical jargon terms). For next week, let's use (five of) a fond, nascent, ben trovato, languish, minatory, bedizen, and insouciant. Also, as per the excellent suggestion from D4, a bonus point will be awarded if you use any of the rhetorical devices I've defined so far in your entry. But you have to use the device, not mention the term (dear Lord, I've become my old English teacher). Okay, good luck and thanks for reading!

27 comments:

Bibi said...

You'd be a great English teacher though. At least you're passionate about your language. I've had language teachers that didn't seem to have any interest in what they were doing (especially French teachers. Man, French teachers really just don't give a damn)

Jan van Eyck!!! You can't believe how many classes I've had on that painting. More classes than I have fingers on both hands! And I love how you called it "portret" (portrait) and not "huwelijk" (wedding), 'cause it's not a wedding, eventhough a lot of people still think it is.

and re: ;) true, true, very true. My last post has 19 comments, of which 8 from you. *gasp* Are you like... stalking me? o.O Guess you could ask me the same question.
Hehehe, translucent nerd. I'm a nerd and very proud of it!

jos xx said...

an awkward expression or manner - like what?

congrats to the winner - even though i love my piece more ;)

re your comment: me in that photo?! i would never do that...

jos xx

Kyran said...

Anarchy and gaucherie are perhaps not necessarily inherent to beauty, but are quite often involved in the process of discovering it.

Sick by Trend said...

sorry Mr!! when I went to London was for a limited time and all day with a schedule! next time I'll tell you but I'm going to live there in 3 months! :D

xx

www.sickbytrend.com

DEZMOND said...

the way the word sounds kinda goes lovely with its meaning :)

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Yay JayJay!

A Beer for the Shower said...

Oh, how this word speaks to me. My life is a constant state of gaucherie.

Hamza Bin Ladin said...

Congrats to JayJay!!!!

Lemons Don't Make Lemonade said...

This word is awesome. I love the fact that there are so many fancy words for social ineptitude (e.g. gaffe, faux pas).

And I applaud JayJay. I'm embarrassed to admit that I've been lazy for the past few weeks and I haven't committed any new words to memory, including the Dictionary.Com Words of the Day.

Zombie said...

thats a pretty epic hat. lol.

Kristina P. said...

I use the word "gauche" a lot, but have never heard it used in this way!

Diego Sousa said...

learning new stuff everyday from this blog :)

Natasha said...

I wish you were my old English teacher! You've got a lot more passion about words than some of the teachers I had. And this is a fantastic word too. Another one I'll have to slip into conversation once in a while. And the Hay festival is brilliant, I think you can book tickets very early if you're interested. Just do a Google search for the main website and all the details should be there. xxx

D4 said...

Don't worry about the late entry, I admire JayJay's submission too much. Used Eo Ipso. I mean damn.

D4 said...

Also, put JayJay up on the scores! What is this :O

Mai Yang said...

I do agree with Bibi :)

shari said...

Congrats to JayJay! I admit I struggled with the correct way to use eo ipso in my piece. I'm bringin' it to the mat for the next one!

Hydriotaphia said...

A right-handed majority conspiracy to make negative associations about the left-handed people, the sinister side in Italian , gauche et droit , left and right in French !

Nicole Linette said...

Is this insinuating that left handed people are awkward?

...well, I suppose I can't argue.

And yes, those are roses of Sharon! Thanks for reminding me.

I always thought I was fond of words, but I seem to lack the brain power for memorizing such high vocabulary.

Cheers,
nicole.

JayJay said...

Oh gosh...I just woke up and found this. Thanks for the congrats everyone.

As to the word, I have to agree with @Kritina P. I haven't heard it used that way before but the etymology is very interesting.

Henry said...

The sound of the word itself sounds fitting for its meaning.

MRanthrope said...

I have how perverted this word sounds. Or maybe that's just my tainted mind put a sleazy twist on everything. That's probably it.

ivy's closet said...

I must do this a lot...

Oh, in the book I mentioned..I learned about tramping and school fighting. He had to beat up all the boys he was teaching. As if that would ever happen, now days. All in Happy as a Big Sunflower.

Ting Kubby said...

Well my vocabulary just grew by one word.

Kid Shuffle said...

This is a brilliant concept for blog; its so original! This is going to be quite the help on my essays this year

jos xx said...

re: no, i didn't know that. "paris syndrome" sounds way too funny! with regards to the other comment you left me, i think i didn't explain myself well enough. I would never post pictures under those circumstances.

jos xx

Meri said...

wait wait- I can make "gauche" a noun? This is the best. I always conjugate words like this but never know if they are legit or not!

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