Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Evasion-English Dictionary” as Want to Read:
The Evasion-English Dictionary
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Evasion-English Dictionary

by
4.24  ·  Rating details ·  72 ratings  ·  12 reviews
What if you fired your shrink and hired a proofreader?

More than just a dictionary of euphemisms by a young linguist, The Evasion-English Dictionary is a merciless translation of the banalities of contemporary speech. It's also scathingly funny.

For example, Balistreri asks what if you substituted the word "you" for the phrase "the relationship" in the sentence, "There seem
...more
Paperback, 88 pages
Published October 1st 2003 by Melville House
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Evasion-English Dictionary, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Evasion-English Dictionary

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.24  · 
Rating details
 ·  72 ratings  ·  12 reviews


More filters
 | 
Sort order
Start your review of The Evasion-English Dictionary
Sidik Fofana
May 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
SIX WORD REVIEW: Please, examine your use of "like".
Nichole Coppes
Dec 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I saw her read this years ago and she was amazing! This is one of the best little books on language out there. I laughed out loud.
Suzanne Wise
Jul 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Evasion-English Dictionary is SO smart, witty, hilarious. I love the mini-essay intros to examples of the ways in which we manipulate key seemingly throw-away words to evade the truth. Literary brainiac elegance of language with irreverence, including swear words—yum! Political & social critique via the skewering of the colloquial! Maggie Balistreri's newly expanded EED is completely original and much needed in these times in which so many—from a compulsively self-aggrandizing President to h ...more
Maciej Bliziński
"Actually pretty good!" :D
Christina
Mar 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: language
A brief book on how we use certain words to avoid saying what we really mean. "Dictionary" is slightly misleading since only 19 words and phrases are discussed, though the author points out an impressive ten meanings of the word like.
Examples:
the relationship = you: "The relationship needed a lot of work."
I know = even though: "I just don't feel like going. I know you had your heart set on it."
Hate = have: "I hate to say I'm holding out for something better..."
It is funny because of the aut
...more
Joseph
Jun 30, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction
You would expect this to be a cutesy gimmick book - but you'd be wrong. It's actually a fairly astute piece of pop-psychology and linguistic observation. Basically, they take common euphemisms and language tics and break down the hidden meaning behind them. For example, the ubiquitous and highly annoying "like" and "whatever" have 10 and 13 definitions respectively and reading the explanations is very illuminating. Once you see the various social maneuverings and agendas behind each of the liste ...more
Christopher Roth
Jan 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It's Ambrose Bierce meets Erving Goffman! Short, but hilarious in places and well worth picking up.
Wendy Ross
Sep 09, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Premium..> (everything is illuminated). Worth buying.
Fucking Funny.
...more
Jaymee
Jun 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-not-owned
Brilliant and fun explanation of how we (mis)use words to evade their real meanings/uses!
Denise
Jan 15, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: writing-tools
So, like, it's all about how we, like, use words like "like."
Melville House Publishing
Feb 06, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
"Maggie Balistreri takes dead aim at the Like, Whatever faction of English speakers and splatters them with her paint ball. Clear-minded grammar wins out in the end. Bravo." --Garrison Keillor
Marykay Pogar
rated it really liked it
Aug 16, 2019
Hannah
rated it it was amazing
Aug 03, 2016
Paul Vittay
rated it really liked it
May 02, 2019
Ottilee B.
rated it liked it
Jun 16, 2019
Marcus Demmon
rated it it was amazing
Apr 29, 2013
Carol
rated it it was amazing
Mar 01, 2013
Natalie
rated it it was amazing
Jul 18, 2015
Bruce Campbell
rated it really liked it
Apr 21, 2008
Caitlin
rated it really liked it
Jul 11, 2016
Carol
rated it it was amazing
Feb 17, 2019
Skyler
rated it really liked it
Jul 14, 2014
Seth Kramer
rated it it was amazing
Jul 05, 2018
Mike
rated it really liked it
Jan 27, 2012
Sophia
rated it liked it
May 14, 2011
Carraugh
rated it really liked it
Aug 17, 2020
Vitali
rated it it was amazing
Feb 14, 2009
Margaret Harrington
rated it really liked it
Dec 05, 2012
Jess Rueve
rated it it was amazing
Jan 22, 2014
Nicole
rated it it was amazing
Oct 23, 2008
« previous 1 3 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Oh Crap! Potty Training: Everything Modern Parents Need to Know  to Do It Once and Do It Right
  • The Undying
  • Catch Me If You Can: The True Story of a Real Fake
  • Spinning
  • Hidden Valley Road: Inside the Mind of an American Family
  • A Cup of Water Under My Bed: A Memoir
  • Annie on My Mind
  • Seven Fallen Feathers: Racism, Death, and Hard Truths in a Northern City
  • Son of a Trickster (Trickster, #1)
  • We Have Always Been Here: A Queer Muslim Memoir
  • Humble Pi: A Comedy of Maths Errors
  • Student Bible New International Version (NIV)
  • The Boat People
  • The Topeka School
  • Essex County
  • French Exit
  • Against Everything: Essays
  • The Handmaid's Tale: The Graphic Novel
See similar books…
11 followers
Maggie Balistreri is a namer and taxonomist in NY. She studied information science at Pratt Institute and previously worked as a librarian at Poets House.

Maggie also publishes under the name Maude Spekes.

News & Interviews

Last year, Buzzfeed culture writer Anne Helen Petersen struck a chord with her viral article “How Millennials Became the Burnout Generation.”...
77 likes · 14 comments