Jun 16, 2006

Rapid Rhetoric - KWASHIORKOR

This is an irregular feature - both in frequency and oddness - dedicated to a word I came across that I have never previously used.

Kwashiorkor - n. a form of malnutrition caused by inadequate protein and anti-oxidant intake despite sufficient caloric consumption.

Kwashiorkor occurs most frequently in areas with limited food supply, in times of famine, or where educational levels are low. Those suffering from the disorder generally consume high-carbohydrate, low-protein diets.

The syndrome is characterized by retarded growth, changes in skin and hair pigment, edema, and liver damage, including fatty infiltration, necrosis, and fibrosis.

The word is of West African origin, from one of the Kwa languages of coastal Ghana, and translates roughly as "displaced child" or "one who is displaced." This refers to the fact that the condition tends to set in only after a child has been weaned.


M A F said...

Mike, have I got a word for you...the minute I came across it I thought of this irregular feature. Okay, wait for it...tarradiddle. It is defined as,

1. A petty falsehood; a fib.
2. Silly pretentious speech or writing; twaddle.

Ann Coulter's books are filled with tarradiddles, both large and small. (I just might have to start my own irregular feature.)

Hooda Thunkit said...

For once, I'm speechless.

The pictures this conjures up are very disturbing.