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Word a da day

September 4th, 2004 · No Comments

No funny comments. I just thought this was a very cool and very usable word. (It sounds French. You gotta love that. Like melange, or decollatage — love that soft g sound.)

bricolage bree-koh-LAHZH; brih-, noun: Construction or something constructed by using whatever materials happen to be available.

The Internet is a global bricolage, lashing together unthinkable complexities of miscellaneous computers with temporary lengths of phone line and fiber optic, bits of Ethernet cable and strings of code. –Bernard Sharratt, “Only Connected,” [1′ target=’_blank’>New York Times, December 17, 1995

Cooking with leftovers was bricolage–a dialogue between the cook and the available materials. –Susan Strasser, [2′ target=’_blank’>Waste and Want: A Social History of Trash

I point out to my students that no one ever really reads Hamlet for the first time now; we’ve heard it all before in bits and pieces, cultural bricolage. –Marjorie Garber, “Back to Whose Basics?” [3′ target=’_blank’>New York Times, October 29, 1995 _________________________________________________________

Bricolage comes from the French, from bricole, “trifle; small job.”

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