Becoming the Snapshots, Part One

In part one of this two-part blog, I’m looking at the growing number of tour operators who offer professional photographers as part of tour packages, and I’m looking at the reasons why professional photographers won’t solve the problem that their inclusion in tour packages is designed to solve. Continue reading “Becoming the Snapshots, Part One”

Catch No Ball*: Understanding Languages, Varieties and Dialects

It might seem redundant to define the features of a language, but languages are rarely so easy. We can define English, French and German, but what about Swedish and Norwegian? Swedish and Norwegian are mutually intelligible; people from Sweden and Norway can talk to each other and understand each other with little difficulty.

Continue reading “Catch No Ball*: Understanding Languages, Varieties and Dialects”

Definitely Maybe: Epistemic modality and saying nothing about something

As you might expect, Oasis’s 1994 debut album Definitely Maybe has got me thinking about epistemic modality. That’s because epistemic modality expresses degrees of certainty. “As you might expect…” is epistemic. It expresses how confident I am that other people think listening to Oasis makes me think about grammar (i.e. not very confident). “As you will expect…” would be more confident. But it would be misplaced. And weird: it would sound weird. But that’s not the point. The point is the degree of confidence. Continue reading “Definitely Maybe: Epistemic modality and saying nothing about something”

Some thoughts on ‘serious’ and ‘popular’ literature and Margaret Atwood and stuff

The idea of genre in literature can get spiky and personal and has more to do with credibility and tradition than with easily being able to find books on a shelf. Why else do we make a distinction between ‘literary’ works and ‘popular’ works? Between ‘classic’ fiction and ‘genre’ fiction?

Continue reading “Some thoughts on ‘serious’ and ‘popular’ literature and Margaret Atwood and stuff”

No matter how bad ‘Terminator: Genisys’ might turn out to be, at least it’s not Chief Master Sergeant William Candy

With Terminator: Genisys set to resurrect/destroy-what’s-left-of the Terminator franchise’s credibility (delete as applicable), maybe now’s a good time to look at why such little credibility is left and why long-time fans are not optimistic about the re-boot’s chances. Cue the sound of fingers being pointed at Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. Continue reading “No matter how bad ‘Terminator: Genisys’ might turn out to be, at least it’s not Chief Master Sergeant William Candy”