Lexiculture (word list + class project)

Once again this year, my students in my undergraduate Language & Culture class will be writing original research papers on the history of individual English words. I’m teaching online but the project is completely portable to that format. I’ve always found this to be a great way to introduce students to doing their own research on sociolinguistic / social-historical / lexicographical topics, and this year’s list of words for them to choose from is (he says not-so-humbly) pretty awesome. What are your favorites?

  • all in
  • all out
  • Amerindian
  • amp up
  • anymore
  • baloney
  • bejesus
  • bespoke
  • booty
  • brain trust
  • bruschetta
  • burnout
  • business end
  • buzzkill
  • call dibs
  • car phone
  • card-carrying
  • centric
  • challenged
  • childfree
  • coed
  • columbused
  • conversate
  • deja vu
  • disinterested
  • doggone
  • donut
  • drama queen
  • druthers
  • endgame
  • fast forward
  • finalize
  • frenemy
  • get-go
  • goner
  • grassroots
  • halfsies
  • hardcore
  • hardwired
  • has-been
  • hiccough
  • highfalutin
  • hyphenated
  • impersonator
  • impostor
  • Information Superhighway
  • jailbait
  • jinx
  • jock
  • Judeo-Christian
  • kewl
  • lavender 
  • lit
  • majorly
  • man cave
  • Mohammedan
  • moonshot
  • next-level
  • NSFW
  • nth
  • nuke
  • nutjob
  • octoroon
  • often
  • outro
  • peopling
  • phase out
  • porridge
  • pronto
  • pussyfoot
  • rando
  • realtime
  • reboot
  • recap
  • restroom
  • runner-up
  • shoo-in
  • shout out
  • slider
  • snuck
  • stalemate
  • stalker
  • stat
  • suntan lotion
  • suplex
  • swiff
  • tailgate
  • tardy
  • thunk
  • tinfoil hat
  • touchless 
  • trump
  • underprivileged
  • upside the head
  • upsize
  • vibe
  • wannabe
  • white trash
  • whodunit
  • whole nother
  • widget
  • workshop
  • yea big

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