Archie Bunkerisms

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Senior Member
English, USA
Hello everyone.
I'm wondering if me have a word to describe pronunciations that are just slightly off. I'll give you a clue to my age group by saying that we used to call these Archie Bunkerisms back when.
The example that prompted this was a discussion about ek-setera and etcetera in another thread.
I think that Malapropism doesn't quite make it here, but I may be wrong.
  • Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    Well, it wouldn't be "Archie Bunkerism" in BrE, as - to the best of my knowledge - the TV sitcom featuring Archie Bunker was never shown over here. We did, of course, have the BBC series which was the inspiration for the character, but Alf Garnett wasn't famous for mispronunciations, as I recall.

    Wiki says:
    The term "Archie Bunker-ism," or just "Archie-ism," was also coined during the show's run to refer to the many malapropisms, such as "groin-acologist" for "gynecologist," that Bunker used on the series.
    So perhaps 'malapropism' is the word you want after all?


    Senior Member
    US English
    A malapropism is the use of an incorrect word, usually to intentional or unintentional comic effect, not a mispronunciation. Here is an example found via Google:

    "I am not going to make a skeptical out of my boxing career." (i.e. spectacle) — Tonya Harding

    I can't think of a good term for what seadew is talking about though.

    Matching Mole

    Senior Member
    England, English
    Archie Bunker used a variety of mispronunciations. Some (perhaps most) were malapropisms:
    "If he don't yell 'pig' or any of them other epaulets [epithets], he'll be okay."
    "Edith, this is the nectarine [nectar] of the gods."
    Some were spoonerisms (transposition of initial letters):
    "my eyes was lookin' at hard pore cornography"
    And yet others were fictitious words:
    "She's hangin' around my neck like an albacross."

    I don't know of a word that covers all of these!

    (By the way, Loob, "All In The Family" was broadcast in the UK, I used to watch it when I was a teenager. I don't think the 80s follow up "Archie Bunker's Place" was, though.)

    Quote sources:
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    Senior Member
    English, USA
    "She's hangin' around my neck like an albacross." (albatross?)

    Dear Ms. Mole,
    Thank you so much for your examples and astute comments. Are these quotes from memory are do you have a trove of them somewhere? I found a few this afternoon, but these were not among them!


    New Member
    English-United States
    We were fairly young for Archie. I was disappointed at first when the show started. It replaced the Governor and JJ, a frothy but fun little show I liked as it left me laughing. Once we met Archie and Edith et al, we were hooked. My mother's favorite "Archieism," I think, was a discussion about religion. It was probably "Meathead" who told Archie Christ might have been Ethiopian. Archie said, "Ethiopian, Presbyterian..." don't know what he said after that, we were cracking up. It was and remains stunning that there are those who thought Archie represented their self-righteous, uninformed, bigoted mind-sets as the correct views of everything.
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