As the curtain closes on 2023, prominent dictionaries around the world have unveiled their “Word of the Year” selections, offering unique insights into the linguistic trends and patterns that dominated the past year. These chosen words reflect not only the most searched-for or talked-about terms, but also the cultural zeitgeist and the issues that resonated most deeply with the global community.
‘Word of the Year 2023’ as Declared by the Major Dictionaries Globally
- Oxford Dictionary: Rising to the top spot for Oxford is “Rizz”, a slang term referring to one’s natural charm, charisma, and ability to attract romantic partners. Popularized by internet personality Kai Cenat, “Rizz” captures the growing emphasis on online persona and social media presence in the realm of dating and relationships.
- Merriam-Webster: In contrast, Merriam-Webster champions “Authentic” as its Word of the Year. This choice highlights a yearning for genuineness and self-expression in a world increasingly saturated with artifice and digital filters. It reflects a desire to connect with one another on a deeper level, beyond the carefully curated online facades.
- Collins Dictionary: For Collins Dictionary, the future reigns supreme. Their Word of the Year is “AI” (artificial intelligence), recognizing its transformative potential and its ever-growing influence on various aspects of our lives. From healthcare and finance to entertainment and transportation, AI is poised to reshape the very fabric of our existence.
- Cambridge Dictionary and Dictionary.com: Interestingly, both Cambridge Dictionary and Dictionary.com share the same Word of the Year: “Hallucinate”. However, their interpretations diverge slightly. For Cambridge, it refers to the ability of AI to generate false information, raising concerns about misinformation and the ethical implications of deepfakes. Dictionary.com, on the other hand, focuses on the broader sense of AI creating unexpected or surprising outputs, underscoring the wonder and awe inspired by this rapidly evolving technology.
The diverse range of Words of the Year chosen by these prominent dictionaries paints a fascinating picture of the year 2023. From the playful charm of “Rizz” to the existential questions surrounding AI, these words encapsulate the complexities and contradictions of our times. They remind us of the power of language to shape our thoughts, experiences, and interactions with the world around us.
As we step into 2024, it will be interesting to see how these linguistic trends continue to evolve and what new words emerge to capture the spirit of the times.