This trash fire year has been full of strange tragedies that have seriously made us wonder if the world is coming to an end. It makes a lot of sense then that one of the most popular words of 2016 is also kinda devo. Merriam-Webster has declared that “surreal” is the word of 2016 due to spikes in searches following a number of events that took place this year.
is Quentin Tarantino directing 2016?
— Matt Oswalt (@MattOswaltVA) 8 July 2016
According to a Merriam-Webster press release, surreal is defined as “marked by the intense irrational reality of a dream.” Sounds about right.
1) ‘Surreal’ is one of the most common lookups following a tragedy
2) ‘Surreal’ is our 2016 Word of the Yearhttps://t.co/O7azAyRQC1
— Merriam-Webster (@MerriamWebster) 19 December 2016
The dictionaries’ editor-at-large, Peter Sokolowski, explained why the world was so significant this year:
“Surreal had three major spikes in interest that were higher in volume and were sustained for longer periods of time than in past years. In March, the word was used in coverage of the Brussels terror attacks. Then, in July, we saw the word spike again: it was used in descriptions of the coup attempt in Turkey and in coverage of the terrorist attack in Nice. Finally, we saw the largest spike in lookups for surreal following the US election in November.”
It’s not hard to see why people were looking for a way to define the strange nightmare scenarios that were Trump’s election, Orlando, the Paris attacks, and the list sadly goes on. Here’s hoping for a much better 2017.
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