nancylebov (nancylebov) wrote,
nancylebov
nancylebov

Nu-cyu-lar, dammit!

While the accent I learned growing up in the middle class in northern Delaware is generally considered respectable, there's one deviation, and it seems to get worse as the years go by. Somehow (no doubt as a proof of intellectual inferiority), I got the impression that the adjective for the stuff in the middle of atoms is pronounced nu-cyu-lar rather than nuke-cle-ar. So small, and yet so important.....

So far as I can tell, as recently as twenty years ago and maybe less, this was no big deal. And then, for no reason I can see, a pronunciation which still seems entirely normal to me became proof of stupidity.

Suppose I pronounce it nuke-clee-ar....does that mean I've actually know more about protons, neutrons, and the details of their time with each other?

Does anyone know the history of how this got to be such an important marker of whatever it's a marker of?

And yes, when I think of this I count myself very fortunate that it's one word rather than my whole accent.

For a small casual study about the pronunciation of this crucial word, check out The Duck of Minerva, a blog I'm definitely going to be following.

Blog clue thanks to richardthinks.
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