Friday, March 4, 2005

To neologize or not to neologize

In an earlier post, I used the term "Chaiwan." Although Chaiwan, or Chai Wan, is a place name in Hong Kong and Thailand, as well as a hardware brand name, this use of the word is a term of art I use to describe Taiwan's political and cultural identity more accurately. Not purely Taiwan, not fully China: but all Chaiwan. A local would, therefore, be Chaiwanese.

As far as claiming credit to coining the the term, the only "competition" I've found so far (on Google) is this Taiw-- I mean, Chaiwanese punk rocker kid, this exchange student girl, and a couple Asian students. Except for the last two cases, I can't tell if the use of the word -- albeit spelled "Chiwanese" -- is witting or unwitting. I'll concede, though, that Chiwanese is in use at least in the Asian-American student community, and certainly more in slang offline than online. But hey, even if I've been beaten to yet another neologism, I prefer my spelling. So nyeh! We'll see where I can go with it, or perhaps it without me, if anywhere.

1 comment:

Eric Indiana said...

Keep neologizing. It helps make the language interesting. Here are some of my new words: