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General Semantics Olympics

  • 17 Jul 2024
  • 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • The Players Club, 16 Gramercy Park South, New York, NY 10003



General Semantics Olympics

Please join us on Wednesday, July 17, as we anticipate the start of the 2024 Summer Olympics with a competition of our own.

The work of Neil Postman–who was both an accomplished scholar and athlete–is well known to general semanticists.  We will focus on his 1976 book Crazy Talk, Stupid Talk: How We Defeat Ourselves by the Way We Talk – and What to Do About It (1976).  Postman defined “crazy talk” as “talk that may be entirely effective but which has unreasonable or evil or, sometimes, overwhelmingly trivial purposes.  It is talk that creates an irrational context for itself or sustains an irrational conception of human interaction."  “Stupid talk” is “talk that has…a confused direction or an inappropriate tone or a vocabulary not well-suited to its context. It is talk…that does not and cannot achieve its purposes.”

In this session, a panel of participants will present the best examples of crazy and stupid talk that they have recently encountered.  We will all vote to award gold, silver, and bronze medals to the craziest and stupidest talk presented by the panelists.

This event will take place from 6 PM to 9 PM Wednesday, July 17th at the historic Players Club in Gramercy Park. 

Registration is free, but all attendees must be registered in order to gain admittance to the club. This includes any guests you might want to bring with you.

The program will take place in the Library on the 2nd floor of the club. Please note that, as an historic 19th century landmark, the site is not handicap accessible. Dress code is business casual and is strictly enforced, including no sneakers, shorts, ripped jeans, or t-shirts.


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The New York Society for General Semantics is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization established September 9, 1946.

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