[DWJ] literary consultation

Mark Allums mark at allums.com
Thu Nov 1 01:13:41 EDT 2007


Otter Perry wrote:
> That is, I wish to consult the literary lights of this list.
> 
> That is, everybody.
> 
> I am a devotee of Mr. Pratchett.  There is a device he uses
> very, very frequently, and I want to know if there is a
> technical term for it.
> 
> He will substitute a word in a common phrase with one
> that fits the Discworld.  For example, when referring to
> something that is always active, he says 24/8.  When
> people swear, they say "by gods".  These are terribly
> humdrum examples.  He is the master of this device.
> 
> Here's another one:  In Soul Music, Buddy has fallen
> asleep and Glod says of him, "Out like a candle.'
> At another point the Archchancellor says "What on
> Disc for?"
> 
> I don't think they're just puns.  Goodness knows,
> he can pun with the best.
> So is there some simple name?


I don't think this is quite the word for it, but the exaggerated 
understatement is "litotes", if I have got the spelling correct. 
Denying the opposite, that is.  I don't think there is a single term for 
making the words fit the setting, is there?

--Mark




More information about the Dwj mailing list