Reading news articles, blogs, and even discussions on Nexus, I've grown weary of hyperbolic excess.

 

After so much use, hyperbole becomes meaningless.  Somewhere, "Huge" and "Hugely" became words for "fairly much, but I want to sound really impressive".  Shocking!  It's incredibly shameless to say that!  I'm disgusted by your baseless assumptions!?!?!

 

As a rhetorical tool, I don't think hyperbole has much effect, except to inspire others to counter with hyperbole.  Even so, I think that when you wrestle a hog, you just wind up covered with mud and hogshit, and it makes the hog happier.  That's a shameless bastardization of the original expression!  Crude and inacceptible!  George Bernard shaw would roll over in his grave!!!!!!!!

 

Excessive use extreme robs extreme words of their meaning.  Any more, when someone goes on a big attack and I wonder, "what deserved that level of shock and awe?"  When the drama level is too high, I stop accepting the credibility of the dramatist.  I decide that a conversation isn't worth having. 

 

When everyone else is shouting, maybe the most effective approach is a whisper.

 

That's why I think hyperbole is nonsense.  It does not result in exchange of ideas, isn't convincing, is drama for drama's sake, and detracts from the real discussions.  That includes discussions on Nexus.

 

That's my story and I'm stickin' to it.

Tags: hyperbole

Views: 31

Replies to This Discussion

1. Nice use of hyperbole to point out its over use
2. It all comes down to usefulness. No matter where or how the conversation is taking place too much drama over something minor is not a useful way to change anything, including someone's mind.
lol
Daniel, this is without doubt the most outrageously inflammatory thing I've ever seen on the intertubez. But then, I'm given to hypobole.
I agree, this is the most fascist Nazi language control I've ever seen!!!!!!!
I call Godwin's Law.
Agreed. Language inflation results in language blunting - the sharp edge is lost. Extremes and superlatives should be used with restraint.

Contradictions are a pain too. How can something be "more unique" than something else?

Are we becoming language lazy and mindless repeaters of tabloid headlines?

Thanks for bringing up a very pertinent point.
Ian: Are we becoming language lazy and mindless repeaters of tabloid headlines?

Bingo. 99% of hyperbole is cliche, jingle and sloganeering. It is indulged in by those with passion but neither the intellect nor the eloquence to back it up. A|N tends to be left of centre and liberal so the only real examples of folks being critical of gratuitous hyperbole here are those that raise Faux News / Teabaggers and the associated neocon circus as examples. So the critique is very one sided. We have plenty of examples of hyperbolic drivel of our own. It is interesting to take the rants you find here by Palestinian activists and Geert Wilders haters and overlay their language over that of the perceived lunatic right - you'll find there is very little difference. It's all cut from the same mold with just appropriate keywords substituted. Right wingers heavily favour synonyms of "snivelling" to pad out the sound bites, while lefties usually opt for "scum" and it's variants. Pointing this obvious parallel out to any of them is futile and only results in you being labeled as a crony of the enemy camp. The dumb, it hurts, yes it does. The relentless "white male" = evil drone is another excellent example.

Laziness is the root of it all - plus minds that are frozen in amber like prehistoric insects, forever unchanging and stuck. It is sobering to remember this whenever people get carried away slapping each others backs at how much smarter us atheists are compared to those stoopid believers.
grrrrr. I hate those too!
"'puter" gets my goad.
I looked back on this and kept getting a familiar feeling. Finally searched on hyperbole - not only has this topic been discussed before, but I had commented on it. Senior moment?

I suppose a useful point bears repeating.
This may just be what annoys me the most online. Drama queens are the enemy.
"Extra Big-ass Fries!"
It may have started to get ridiculous when the word "awesome" began to be used to describe just about anything. That term used for anything other than something that is truly awe-inspiring, (and there are very, very few of those) is pure drama-talk. Mindless parroting, lazy, and destroys what the word is intended to mean. It is like a child saying "look at me! look at me!". The lack of descriptive words in their vocabulary is frightful. "Yeah, dude" is another one that grates on my nerves.

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