Emancipate is the Top HollyWord for 2012

The Year in Film as Reflected in the English Language

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10th Annual Global Survey by the Global Language Monitor
Austin, Texas, February 27, 2012.   ‘Emancipate’ is the Top HollyWord of the 2012 season, according to the tenth annual global analysis by the Global Language Monitor.  At no. 2 is the numeric constant  π, followed by barricade, upside down, and interrogation enhancement.  Rounding out the top ten were czar, Argos, borderline, Franken-, and Elvish.
HollyWords
HollyWords of the Year Announced every Oscar Week

“In 2012, emancipate was a pervasive global theme represented in Lincoln, Django, and  Argo but also in smaller, documentary and Indy efforts the world over.   As Webster defines it, emancipate means ‘ to free from restraint, control, or the power of another”.  This certainly resonated with both the filmmakers–and the audiences, who turned out in record numbers this season”, said Paul JJ Payack, president and chief word analyst for the Global Language Monitor.    Each year, GLM announces the Top HollyWords after the Oscars at the conclusion of the awards season.  The 85th Annual Academy Awards ceremony was held at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California with Seth MacFarlane as host.

The Top Hollywords of the 2012 season with commentary follow.
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Rank / Word or Phrase / Commentary
  1. Emancipate (Lincoln, Django, Argo) — Webster says ‘to free from restraint, control, or the power of another’.
  2. Pi  (Life of Pi) — As the title character would later explain:  3.1415926535 8979323846 2643383279 5028841971 6939937510, et cetera
  3. Barricade (Les Miserables) — In the original French barricade referred to a barrel. In actual history, the were swept away in days, or even hours.
  4. Upside Down (Flight) — Mortgages are ‘upside down’, houses are ’upside down’, investments are ’upside down’, but some times airplanes are actually ’upside down’.
  5. Interrogation Enhancement (Zero Dark Thirty) — As defined by international treaty:  any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted.
  6. Czar (Anna Karenina) – The word Czar is derived from the ancient Roman title, Caesar, as is Kaiser
  7. Argos (Argo) — An actual movie named after an actual script named after the mythical Jason, the Argonauts, and his ship.
  8. Borderline (Silver Linings Playbook) — Personality, sanity, polarity, and that’s just the first scene.
  9. Franken- (as a prefix)  (Frankenweenie) — In the 21st century, the prefix Franken- has become a shorthand for human-generated catastrophes.
  10. Elvish (The Hobbit) —  Their original language lost to history, Hobbits were first encountered speaking a Mannish tongue learned from humans
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GLM used NarrativeTracker 2.0 for this analysis.  NT2.0 is based on global discourse, providing a real-time, accurate picture of what the public is saying about any topic, at any point in time. NarrativeTracker analyzes the Internet, blogosphere, the top 75,000 print and electronic global media, as well as new media sources, as they emerge.
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Previous Top HollyWord Winners include:
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2011        Silence – Silent movies, (the Artist), a wife’s silence (Descendants), a father’s silence (Extremely Loud), the silence among the trenches of WWI (Warhorse).
2010       Grit:  firmness, pluck, gritty, stubborn, indomitable spirit, courageous, and brave perseverance.
2009       ‘Pandora’ from Avatar
2008       “Jai Ho!” Literally ‘Let there be Victory’ in Hindi from Slumdog Millionaire
2007      “Call it, Friendo,” from No Country for Old Men
2006       “High Five!!! It’s sexy time!”  from Borat!
2005       ‘Brokeback’ from Brokeback Mountain
2004      “Pinot” from Sideways
2003      ‘Wardrobe malfunction’ from Super Bowl XXXVIII

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