Oxford English Dictionary Adds ‘Woke’ And ‘Post-Truth’

University of Missouri Black Lives Matter protest Getty Images/Michael B. Thomas

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Rob Shimshock Education Reporter
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The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) announced Tuesday it will add “woke” and “post-truth” to its lexicon of words.

The two terms are politically-charged, with the former used by Black Lives Matter and the latter often used to describe America under President Donald Trump. “Post-truth” was OED’s word of the year for 2016, according to The Daily Beast.

“By the mid-20th century, woke had been extended figuratively to refer to being ‘aware’ or ‘well informed’ in a political or cultural sense,” said The Oxford English Dictionary in its statement announcing the new word. “In the past decade, that meaning has been catapulted into mainstream use with a particular nuance of ‘alert to racial or social discrimination and injustice’… recently through its association with the Black Lives Matter movement, especially on social media.”

Black Lives Matter has used “woke” to describe the group’s viewpoints in contexts ranging from social media hashtag campaigns to “Stay Woke: The Black Lives Matter Movement,” a documentary film portraying the movement.

Meanwhile, the OED defines “post-truth” as “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping political debate or public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.”

OED added “moobs” and “YOLO” to its dictionary in 2016, according to The BBC. While the former word refers to a man’s bulging breasts, the latter one stands for “you only live once.”

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