Dictionary.com is people’s go-to for questions about spelling and definition (AND the social media person or persons for the site is also wonderful at roasting people on Twitter). And because language is a living, changing entity, new words have to be added to the dictionary as they come into popular mainstream usage.
To that end, Dictionary.com announced that it’s adding 300 new words this year, which, according to the site, “spotlight more inclusive and empowered identityand cultural terms that have gained traction in recent years.” There’s also an increased focus on the visibility of marginalized groups, such as the use of the letter X at the end of words like Latinx, so as to include people who identify as gender nonbinary.
Some of the words are serious and some are just fun. Here are 10 of the new words, and to see the rest, just go here.
1. (The) male gaze:
“The assumption in visual and creative arts that the default or desired audience consists of heterosexual males, and inclusion of women in narrative or art should seek to please this audience with the objectification or sexualization of these depicted women.”
2. White fragility:
“The tendency among members of the dominant white cultural group to have a defensive, wounded, angry, or dismissive response to evidence of racism.”
3. Safe space:
“A place that provides a physically and emotionally safe environment for a person or group of people, especially a place where people can freely express themselves without fear of prejudice, negative judgment, etc.”
“A relationship or association between people who text each other frequently, but rarely if ever interact with each other in person.”
5. Deep dive:
“A thorough or comprehensive analysis of a subject or issue.”
“Noting or relating to a close but nonsexual friendship between two men, typically a heterosexual man and a gay man (usually used facetiously).
7. Dad joke:
“A corny and generally unfunny joke reminiscent of the types of remarks made by middle-aged or elderly fathers to the children.”
8: Womp womp
(You know, like the sound of a sad trombone.) “Used to dismiss or to mock a failure, loss, etc.”
9. Brain fart:
“Brief mental lapse, especially an instance of forgetfulness or confusion.”
“A feeling of contentment with one’s own pursuits and activities, without worrying over the possibility of missing out on what others may be doing.”