Featured Image for ANU just announced their Word of the Year and what the hell were they thinking

ANU just announced their Word of the Year and what the hell were they thinking

Brace yourself kids, the moment we’ve all been eagerly awaiting, the cause for all those countless sleepless nights full of anxiety is finally here.

No, I’m not referring to the Infinity War trailer. The Australian National Dictionary Centre (ANDC) has finally chosen their Word of the Year for 2017 and we’re all so, so excited.

Without further ado, the Word of the Year is…



Wait…what? THAT is the Word of the Year?

The announcement certainly left most of us scratching our heads, because, well… who actually uses the word “Kwaussie”? Most of us haven’t even heard of the word until now.

Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce, who was expelled from parliament by the High Court earlier in the year because of his Kiwi citizenship, seems to be the inspiration behind the pick.

The ANDC defines the word as “a person who is a dual citizen of Australia and New Zealand; a New Zealander living in Australia; a person of Australian and New Zealand descent.”

The duty of the ANDC, which is run by the Australian National University, is to conduct research into Australia’s, lets say, “unique” brand of English and provide local insight for the dictionaries produced by Oxford University Press.

“Kwaussie, a blend of Kiwi and Aussie, is the most interesting term associated with the dual citizenship crisis engulfing the Australian Parliament in 2017,” the body said while explaining the reasoning behind their decision.

“It was used to describe the most high-profile casualty of the crisis, Deputy Prime Minister and National Party leader Barnaby Joyce.

“He revealed to parliament in August that, despite being born and bred in country New South Wales, he was also a New Zealander by descent.”

The general bewilderment at the odd choice prompted the academic centre to release an additional statement to further justify their decision.

The ANDC says they traced a “considerable use of it online” while scanning through blog comments, web forums, social media and articles from the press.

They state their intention was to incite productive conversations about culture and identity in Australia rather than the negative reaction they actually received.

“We had hoped that in selecting it as our Word of the Year, rather than prompting a backlash that this was ‘a word nobody has ever heard of’, it would prompt more productive conversations about language and identity in contemporary Australia,” the ANDC said.

“Kwaussie” won the fierce battle of the words after defeating other heavyweights like “makarrata”, “robodebt” and “jumper punch”.

Whatever, we prefer Dictionary.com’s choice.

About the author

Filmmaker. 3D artist. Procrastination guru. I spend most of my time doing VFX work for my upcoming film Servicios Públicos, a sci-fi dystopia about robots, overpopulated cities and tyrant states. @iampineros

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