Academic journal article Hecate

Argy Bargy

Academic journal article Hecate

Argy Bargy

Article excerpt

Argy Bargy

An academic supervisor says I use `often' too often. He says you should use often only sometimes as it is a rather vague term. You should never use often as I do -- always. I say I don't use often always, but yet more than sometimes because it's a useful adverb for modifying things without being all conclusive or totally judgmental. Often the word leaves the historical statement open to flexibility. I use `often' too often he says because frequently I do not mean often, what I really mean is more than sometimes, but less than frequently, which is not explicit or precise. If I say, for example: in the nineteenth century independent assertive women in literature, especially written by men, were often killed off, my supervisor often says I should be more specific. I should qualify it more by saying: in the nineteenth century independent assertive women (footnote reference, quote three examples from texts) written by men (or specific Harvard referencing) were often (if I must use this adverb footnote or use endnotes detailing when and where) killed off (reword, too colloquial) -- yes, I'm often guilty of such slangy asides. I say I want to keep my `oftens,' well, some of them, and negotiate which often I can embed into my feminist discourse. He says one or two `oftens' are acceptable, but suggests the other oftens are profligate, flagrantly used. I think he thinks I am often in an abusive relationship with the word. I confess, yes, I often like using often. It is better than sometimes and not as excessive as always. He says again I use often too often. …

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