On Defining the Blaspheme Revisited—Harvey Minkoff Lingua Pranca Contents
November 10, 1977

Dear Lovers of Linguistic Levity and Ludicrosity:

Consider the following sentences:

1) *John publishes book.
2)*IU Linguistics Club is publisher.
3)*You want to get publisher, isn’t it?
4) Colorless green ideas get published.
5)?And George does so too.

As the attentive reader will have noticed, there are no articles in 1-5. Therefore we propose a rule of ARTICLE-INSERTION. This rule, however, requires independent motivation.

Now consider the following:

A.  The IU Linguistics Club will publish an unheralded and uncalled-for collection of linguistic humor in May 1978.

B.  Implicit in this approach is the notion that you must provide input to the aforementioned ARTICLE-INSERTION rule.

C.  We propose to accept the following input structures:

1.  Cartoons (must be original copy, not a photocopy)

2.  Funny example sentences from linguistic literature (Please give reference.)

3.  Parodies of linguists’ work

4.  Humorous etymologies and definitions

These and other linguistically insignificant generalizations will be considered by the editors. Send us your articles.


Act now, 
 won’t you?
*mightn’t she?
?can’t you?

IULC Ad Hoc Committee for Linguistic Levity and Ludicrosity
Lindley Hall 310
Indiana University
Bloomington, Indiana 47401


Tom Ernst & Evan Smith

On Defining the Blaspheme Revisited—Harvey Minkoff
Lingua Pranca Contents