Oxford Dictionaries has released their Word of the Year 2018:
The famous dictionary claims that the word’s definition has expanded beyond its traditional use. Toxic in the original sense referred to things that were poisonous, such as toxic chemicals.
According to Oxford, toxic has now “taken off into the realm of metaphor.”
People now frequently use “toxic” to describe harmful behaviors in both the workplace, relationships and politics.
Oxford Dictionaries posted this illuminating video breaking down their decision.
The Oxford Word of the Year 2018 is… pic.twitter.com/DotlZxxJVe
— Oxford Dictionaries (@OxfordWords) November 14, 2018
According to Oxford Dictionaries, toxic evolved from a Greek word used to describe poisonous arrows.
In modern-day usage, the term is gaining popularity as a way to describe the political environment in Washington and abusive behaviors in the workplace highlighted by the #MeToo movement. People also use it to describe personal relationships with family, friends or significant others.
Twitter seemed to agree “toxic” was an appropriate choice to describe 2018.
Y'all the word of the year according to oxford dictionary is toxic. And tbh I stan.
— praisy_daisy (@daisy_daze137) November 17, 2018
I just think it’s funny that the Oxford dictionary word of the year is: Toxic, like they really captured 2018 😂
— 🅐ⓢⓗⓛⓘ 🅒ⓘⓐⓡⓐ (@AshliCiara) November 17, 2018
I love this
— INDIGO🌟47 (@samjunior01) November 17, 2018
Britney Spears fans were reminded of a certain song…
— NPR Books (@nprbooks) November 15, 2018
BRITNEY'S 👏 MF 👏 IMPACT 👏 INVENTING 👏 ENGLISH 👏 https://t.co/0SfD3vkcWN
— Jordan Miller (@breatheheavycom) November 17, 2018
Interestingly, our research into ‘toxic’ found that pop icon @britneyspears played a part in spreading this metaphorical use of the word; the lyrics of her 2003 song ‘Toxic’ draw an extended metaphor of a lover as a dangerous yet addictive drug. #OxfordWOTY pic.twitter.com/4Zw9dkOp52
— Oxford Dictionaries (@OxfordWords) November 15, 2018
Some people suggested alternative Words of the Year.
let’s never forget that the OED’s word of the year was almost Big Dick Energy
— jacey (@yungjc69) November 17, 2018
The word of the year should be “perspective” because there seems to be a metric shit ton of people who need a lot of it.
— Natalie Lowry (@nalowry) October 8, 2018
Well, @oxforddictionar has chosen "toxic" as its word of the year. And they don't mean toxic chemical site. How do you all feel about that? I think the word of the year should be "payback."
— Rosemary G. Feal (@rgfeal) November 16, 2018
icb the word of the year is toxic, it should be YEET
— nicole | soonhoon filo au (@kwonthicc) November 16, 2018
Soulsplaining should be added to the dictionary, and up for 2018 word of the year.
— sans culottes (@tfletch2) November 14, 2018
OPINION: This year’s word of the year should be “weltschmerz.” (Meaning “a mental depression or apathy caused by comparison of the actual state of the world with an ideal state; a mood of sentimental sadness.”)
— Bruce Ashford (@BruceAshford) November 3, 2018
“Hustle” should be oxford’s word of the year.
— Arpit (@notThatOldSport) October 28, 2018
Words on the shortlist for 2018 included Gaslighting, Incel and Big Dick Energy.
Based on all the political and cultural drama we’ve been through this year, it’s no surprise most of the words are foreboding and negative.
But at least Big Dick Energy is finally getting the recognition it deserves!