'Mansplaining' enters the Oxford Dictionary, feminists rejoice


Photo: George Marks

It’s that time again, folks, when the good people of Oxford Dictionaries Online, the sister publication to the high-brow, leather-bound Oxford English Dictionary, collate our bastardised English into some kind of accessible listicle.

Among the debutants there are some amazeball hybrids, like, well, not amazeballs, but humblebrag, binge-watch and douchebaggery. Of course, a string of offensive words and phrases go hand-in-hand – the sort to cause the hearts of English majors to break into a thousand, tiny, abbreviated pieces – YOLO, for one, hot mess another, and neckbeard, which for some reason just sounds kinda gross, right?

The one little word that really captured our attention, however, and made our team of bitter feminists embrace each other with joy was this:

mansplain (v.): (of a man) explain something to someone, typically a woman, in a manner regarded as condescending or patronising. 


While the definition rather simplifies the nuanced pastime that is mansplaining – all that ignoring of social cues, repetition, delivered with obligatory slow-mo drawl – its inclusion is the validation we needed. Years of pushing back against the monotonous monologue have finally paid off, ladies! – A real entry in a bursting-at-the-seams online dictionary. Oh, wait.

"These are words that are common enough that you are likely to encounter them, and may have to look up their meanings," Oxford Dictionaries editor Katherine Martin told AP.

Martin said inclusion in the online dictionary does not mean the words will become permanent additions to the English language. Many may not make it into the actual Oxford English Dictionary.

"For some of these, we will say 'What was that?' in a decade. Others may become the next selfie," she said, referring to last year's most popular new entry. "The English-speaking public will choose."

Hear that, people? It's up to you. Join the fight to get 'mansplaining' cemented in the English language. It may be the most important thing you ever do.

Source: The Cut