Office of the VP for Communications – Keeping alumni and friends connected to U-M

Talking About Words

  1. "A" vs. "an"

    Anne Curzan sounds off on the battle between these indefinite articles.

  2. Eggcorns

    Are you trying to pass mustard for all intensive purposes in a doggy dog world?

  3. Double negatives

    Anne Curzan can’t get no satisfaction from the idea that two negatives make a positive.

  4. "A Table Alphabeticall"

    Anne Curzan flips through the first English dictionary, published in London in 1604.

  5. Yup, uh huh, yes

    When it comes to expressing agreement, we can choose from an extensive range of options.

  6. Argh! Ugh! Oof!

    How and when should we use these interjections? Anne Curzan explains.

  7. Squash, squish, and squoosh!

    Anne Curzan examines the subtleties between these sensory sounds.

  8. Hats off

    Have you ever scored a hat trick? Changed at the drop of a hat? Been mad as a hatter?

  9. Spellbound?

    How do you feel about cigaret? Wuz? Nemonia? Anne Curzan explores spelling reform — and resistance.