I remember at school there was a combined
volume of "Billy Liar" and "The Loneliness of
The Long Distance Runner" ubiquitous to the
"English Rooms". I thought the latter to be
the better story, better written; but Billy Liar
had been made into a film and it should be a
good preparation for comparing films to books
in what would now be our GCSE curriculum,
so it got both read-aloud, and screened, in front
of an audience.
One reason, perhaps, was its "satire" of the
medallion-sporting down-to-earth traditional
business type - Councillor Duxbury - as well
as its use of localish accents, including made
up dialect, and it being written by a localish
writer.
Certainly the character Shadrach, co-patron
of Shadrach and Duxbury funeral services, had
an affected Home Counties elision toward
understating syllables into diphthongs with
the repeated use of "vair" as an intensifier in
adjectivals - "vair" = "very" for those unfamiliar with the texts, though any subtle allusions or
perpendiculars to Cinderella-style fairy stories
were, and indeed remain, lost on me.
Oranges do figure prominently though, and
certainly the dusty, harsh sunlight of the
fundamentalist assembly hall in Oranges
Are Not The Only Fruit, which followed it
some two decades or so later draws from
observations on comparable proprieties in
places.
But he was influential, and not just in The Regions, was Willis Hall, who later went on to adapt
Barbara Euphan Todd's Worzel Gummidge
series of insufferably anachronistic everyday
children fairly well for a 1980s audience, and who also wrote Billy Liar (IIRC).
And television being less a case of who you know
these days, as old Jezza insists, as who you can
interest, Billy Liar's synchronicity with the emerging Science Fiction light drama Dr WHO amid a rapidly- changing society in which the firmest bastions of
propriety romped with the most radical agents of
persistent tradition dressed up as change in Swinging London, we're told.
Certainly Modern Mathematics was hitting schools
all over the place, and the Reithian values of a
bow-tie for the evening news called into question.

It was even the era in which The Queen's English
was formally identified as a dialect with accent,
and the prospect of worldwide, possibly eventual
cosmic, galactic and universal localised broadcasting was muted over port, cigars and loosened ties
in the footlit halls of prestige Universities where exciting new opportunities to make use of propagatory media to achieve philosophical and economic ends
were no doubt debated with gusto with a sneaky
insecurity about the fact the blighters might know some Marxian counter-ideals, in Scotland.
But the collapsed diphthong - in which a diphthong is formed to provide minimal phonetic cues to a
longer word - from Billy Liar does, still, come over as an, albeit affected, social semiotic pertaining to the dignity and responsibility of assumed social status. It reminds me of Solihull, Cholmondley,
Bicester and Featherstonehaugh simultaneously;
all pronunciations a reliable acculturated BBC anchor or links man would be expected to know off pat
and deliver without missing a beat.
As such, and if there is a link between "Daleks" and widespread post-war fears of robotic, programmed
drones burdened with limited and monotonous, if
hysterical, language capabilities, then can anyone refer me to any satires of Dr WHO itself in which
this element is perhaps given the prominence it
deserves.
Just let us not forget two languages have officially died this year alone already, and that's only because they had brief notes about them published in some
journal or other prior to this happening the ones we don't know about we are in danger of exterminating far past the point of lexical vestigiality, thugs that we are.
G DAEB
COPYRIGHT (C) 2008 SIPSTON
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As such, and if there is a link between "Daleks" and widespread post-war fears of robotic, programmed drones burdened with ... refer me to any satires of Dr WHO itself in which this element is perhaps given the prominence it deserves.

The Daleks were named so because Terry Nation looked at his copies of Encyclopedia Britannica and saw that one volume was labelled "DAL-LEK".

Enzo
I wear the cheese. It does not wear me.
As such, and if there is a link between "Daleks" ... which this element is perhaps given the prominence it deserves.

The Daleks were named so because Terry Nation looked at his copies of Encyclopedia Britannica and saw that one volume was labelled "DAL-LEK".

Myth!
http://www.whoniverse.org/monsters/daleks.php
"'They were named after a set of encyclopedias' - At the time, writer Terry Nation told the press that he named them after an encyclopedia labelled DAL-LEK, but in fact he simply made up the name."
Cheers
Jeff
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
The Daleks were named so because Terry Nation looked at his copies of Encyclopedia Britannica and saw that one volume was labelled "DAL-LEK".

Myth! http://www.whoniverse.org/monsters/daleks.php "'They were named after a set of encyclopedias' - At the time, writer Terry Nation told the press that he named them after an encyclopedia labelled DAL-LEK, but in fact he simply made up the name."

Well... if Terry says it was so but later retracted the story then his credibility is shot. Who knows what to believe? :-D

Enzo
I wear the cheese. It does not wear me.
But he was influential, and not just in The Regions, was Willis Hall, who later went on to adapt Barbara Euphan Todd's Worzel Gummidge series of insufferably anachronistic everyday children fairly well for a 1980s audience, and who also wrote Billy Liar (IIRC).

You remember incorrectly. "Billy Liar" was written by Keith Waterhouse.
John Hall
"Hegel was right when he said that we learn from history that man can never learn anything from history."
George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
Well... if Terry says it was so but later retracted the story then his credibility is shot. Who knows what to believe? :-D

Ooops - hit the wrong keys!
Myth! http://www.whoniverse.org/monsters/daleks.php "'They were named after a set of encyclopedias' ... DAL-LEK, but in fact he simply made up the name."

Well... if Terry says it was so but later retracted the story then his credibility is shot. Who knows what to believe? :-D

Apparently he wanted to make it "more romantic". I always thought it was an acronym.
Cheers
Jeff
As such, and if there is a link between "Daleks" ... which this element is perhaps given the prominence it deserves.

The Daleks were named so because Terry Nation looked at his copies of Encyclopedia Britannica and saw that one volume was labelled "DAL-LEK".

DAL-EK - except that it wasn't Britannica, and I have never found an encyclopaedia with such a label. I think we have to conclude that it is a myth.

John Briggs
Teachers: We supply a list of EFL job vacancies
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