In That s Not English , the seemingly superficial differences between British and American English open the door to a deeper exploration of a historic and fascinating cultural divide.Read more...
In That s Not English, the seemingly superficial differences between British and American English open the door to a deeper exploration of a historic and fascinating cultural divide. In each of the thirty chapters, Erin Moore explains a different word we use that says more about us than we think. For example, "Quite" exposes the tension between English reserve and American enthusiasm; in "Moreish," she addresses our snacking habits. In "Partner," she examines marriage equality; in "Pull," the theme is dating and sex; "Cheers" is about drinking; and "Knackered" covers how we raise our kids. The result is a cultural history in miniature and an expatriate s survival guide.
American by birth, Moore is a former book editor who specialized in spotting British books including Eats, Shoots & Leaves for the US market. She s spent the last seven years living in England with her Anglo American husband and a small daughter with an English accent. That s Not English is the perfect companion for modern Anglophiles and the ten million British and American travelers who visit one another s countries each year."
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2015-02-02
- Reviewer: Staff
As an American expatriate and book editor who lives in London, Moore is in an ideal position to see the truth to the longstanding joke that British English and American English are different languages. In this witty book, Moore delves into specific linguistic differences, unpacking what they say about our respective cultures. She groups her essays around individual words, using them to spin off into topics as varied as parenting (via "knackered," a state of exhaustion usually parental in nature), snacking ("bespoke," a word the English use to describe, among other things, sandwich bars), and relationships ("partner," a descriptor more inclusively used in the U.K.). She also delves deeply into nuances like how "Yankee" is defined —which differs both between the U.S. and U.K. (where all Americans are Yankees) and between different regions of the U.S. Moore manages to create a text that is eminently readable, clever (in the sincerely-intended American sense) and thought-provoking, gently breaking down some of the cultural stereotyping that plagues both Americans and British. The end result is something readers can readily share with friends on both sides of the ocean. (Mar.)