Friday, December 03, 2004

The Simpsons: A Linguistic Analysis

I wasn't too happy with my first academic paper on The Simpsons- most likely because I didn't put enough time into it. But it got the job done (and I'm not too worried about it since my average in my linguistics class is over 100%). Here are the highlights:

The Simpsons television series provides a fine example of the comedic effect of cleverly prepared language. In particular, the episode “Marge vs. the Monorail” includes representative processes of phonetics, interesting creations from morphology, and lively aspects of sociolinguistics that aid in the conveyance of humor through manipulations of language.
Another cunning moniker arises from the traveling salesman, “Lyle Lanley,” whose persona reflects that of Harold Hill from The Music Man. Lyle Lanley, a name filled with soft lateral consonants, nearly literally “rolls off the tongue” and complements his rapid, smooth-talking nature rather well.
“Truckasaurus,” a large, metallic, truck-eating machine, provides an example of a compound word and blend. Taking the ferocity of “tyrannosaurus” and the action of destroying “trucks,” “truckasaurus” elicits a humorous response through its blatant combination of words. Another blend comes when Homer is discussing Bart’s future: “Do you wanna change your name to Homer Junior? The kids can call you ‘Hoju’”.

Ahh, college.

1 comment:

  1. I'll be impressed when the SLB shows Truckasaurus: The Movie.

    /starring Marlon Brando as John Truckasaurus