Carceral

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Dr. Goodword
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Carceral

Postby Dr. Goodword » Fri Jun 26, 2020 9:58 pm

• carceral •


Pronunciation: kahr-sê-rêl • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Adjective

Meaning: Pertaining to prisons and jails or to incarceration.

Notes: Today's Good Word is a literary term, more likely to be read than heard spoken. Since neither jail (or gaol) nor prison presents with adjectives, today's word comes in handy. The noun for it is carcerality.
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In Play: This adjective may refer to imprisoned people: "The carceral population of the US is the highest in the world." However, its usefulness does not end there: "Despite its carceral appearance, the convention center was equipped with all the conventional amenities."

Word History: Carceral was trimmed from Late Latin carceralis "carceral", based on carcer "jail, prison". Latin seems to have created this word from Proto-Indo-European (s)ker-/(s)kor- "to bend, turn, encircle" + -alis, an adjectival suffix. With the Fickle S, we find evidence of the PIE word in English shrink, Lithuanian skrieti "to circle, revolve" and, perhaps, Latin scrinium "letter box". Without the Fickle S, we find Latin circus "circle" and curvos "bent, crooked", Greek kirkos "ring", English church (Scots English kirk). Greek korone "semicircular crown" and Latin corona "crown", from which Old French inherited corone, share the same source. English borrowed French corone and remodeled it into crown. (Today's fascinating if rather arcane Good Word was suggested by veteran word contributor William Hupy.)
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damoge
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Re: Carceral

Postby damoge » Sat Jun 27, 2020 12:35 pm

"Despite its carceral appearance, the convention center was equipped with all the conventional amenities."

OOOH!!! pun! pun!
Everything works out, one way or another

tkowal
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Re: Carceral

Postby tkowal » Sat Jun 27, 2020 1:49 pm

Since neither jail (or gaol) nor prison presents with adjectives, today's word comes in handy.
There are many occurrences of the word prisonal on the Web, like prisonal system.

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Re: Carceral

Postby Dr. Goodword » Sat Jun 27, 2020 10:03 pm

Debbie,

You got me! It was just too good to let pass.
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Re: Carceral

Postby Dr. Goodword » Sat Jun 27, 2020 10:04 pm

Tomasz,

Prisonal isn't in any dictionary and most of the Google finds are like prison al, prison al), prison al.com.

Prison may be used attributively like prison food, prison life, etc., so we really aren't without an adjective-like form of prison.

I think I'll let my claim stand.
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damoge
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Re: Carceral

Postby damoge » Sun Jun 28, 2020 2:24 pm

Ok, so now, please expand on convention/conventional and then, if you would, move on to concentration/concentration camp?

Do you see my dilemma with these?

Thanks for giving it some thought,
Debby
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