“A hundred years ago you and I would probably have been able to name quite a few parts of a horse’s harness. Nowadays I know what a bridle is, but there isn’t much else. If you were now inventing a term for what we call horsepower you’d never settle on horsepower, because horses are not in the public consciousness anymore.” —Linguist Sarah Thomason, from an interview in The Paris Review on how technology and culture shape the words we use.NR
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