silence is deafening

NickJunior

Senior Member
Khmer
Hello Members of the Forum,

Does the phrase "silence is deafening" a negative term or a positive term? I don't really have a context for it, but I think it seems to be a neutral term. Say there was a murder in town. The case is known, but nobody talks about it at all, not even the media. Then someone wrote, "Silence is deafening".
 
  • JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    I'm not so sure about that. I can't imagine describing a pleasant experience to someone - say, an early-morning walk - and saying "The silence was deafening." Deafening isn't usually considered a positive term. If someone said that to me, I would assume that the silence was uncomfortable or awkward in some way.
     
    I think 'positive' or 'negative' is a bit too rough a distinction. The 'someone' who wrote it is obviously *very* struck by that absence (of talk). S/he may have expected something different. I don't know of 'pleasant' or 'unpleasant' would apply either, but one *might* hazard a guess that the writer at least mildly disapproves, or believes it (the talking about) should have happened. For example: I told a bad joke about Istrians, not knowing the room was filled with these people; I received no laughter, nothing. I say, recounting the episode to a friend, "After my joke, the silence was deafening." I might add, of course, "I now understand why, and am very embarrassed."

    Hello Members of the Forum,

    Does the phrase "silence is deafening" a negative term or a positive term? I don't really have a context for it, but I think it seems to be a neutral term. Say there was a murder in town. The case is known, but nobody talks about it at all, not even the media. Then someone wrote, "Silence is deafening".
     
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