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Credit Where It's Due: Authority and Recognition at the Dictionary of American English

Credit Where It's Due: Authority and Recognition at the Dictionary of American English Sidney Landau argued recently that "the anonymity in which lexicographers are too often forced to work is a serious impediment to their careers and thus to the ultimate best interests of publishers and the public. It is unfair" (1996, 1). Since "good dictionaries require good and experienced lexicographers," we must offer "a modicum of assurance" (1996, 2) that those who work on dictionaries will receive credit when it's due. Recognition is, in part, a matter of authority, and struggles over authority in a dictionary project both figure in the project's evolution and form the product. Along its way to completion, the Dictionary of American English (DAE) confronted problems of recognition and authority.1 George Watson, who followed William Craigie from the OED 'Sir William Craigie began his tenure as professor of English at the University of Chicago in October 1925 and, according to his own account, "the collecting of material for [the Dictionary ofAmerican English] began immediately" (Craigie 1944, 101), a staff was assembled in the following year, and "from that time onwards the work was carried on to the end without interruption" (Craigie 1944, 101). The staff led many University of Chicago students, faculty at other institutions, and http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Dictionaries: Journal of the Dictionary Society of North America Dictionary Society of North America

Credit Where It's Due: Authority and Recognition at the Dictionary of American English

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Publisher
Dictionary Society of North America
Copyright
Copyright © The Dictionary Society of North America
ISSN
2160-5076
Publisher site
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Abstract

Sidney Landau argued recently that "the anonymity in which lexicographers are too often forced to work is a serious impediment to their careers and thus to the ultimate best interests of publishers and the public. It is unfair" (1996, 1). Since "good dictionaries require good and experienced lexicographers," we must offer "a modicum of assurance" (1996, 2) that those who work on dictionaries will receive credit when it's due. Recognition is, in part, a matter of authority, and struggles over authority in a dictionary project both figure in the project's evolution and form the product. Along its way to completion, the Dictionary of American English (DAE) confronted problems of recognition and authority.1 George Watson, who followed William Craigie from the OED 'Sir William Craigie began his tenure as professor of English at the University of Chicago in October 1925 and, according to his own account, "the collecting of material for [the Dictionary ofAmerican English] began immediately" (Craigie 1944, 101), a staff was assembled in the following year, and "from that time onwards the work was carried on to the end without interruption" (Craigie 1944, 101). The staff led many University of Chicago students, faculty at other institutions, and

Journal

Dictionaries: Journal of the Dictionary Society of North AmericaDictionary Society of North America

Published: Apr 4, 1998

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