NYT Magazine column this weekend: marmish." /> NYT Magazine column this weekend: marmish." />

Alexandra Lange

Bluestockings Unite!

My new favorite word, from Virginia Heffernan’s NYT Magazine column this weekend: marmish. She and Urban Dictionary (which says it has been around since 2006) both consider it a bad thing, but I have actually felt liberated by embracing my marmishness in recent years. Maybe it is the teaching, since students seem to respect organization, lists, and many many marginal notes in a classroom setting in ways they might not in the real world. And isn’t that what the academy (even a rapidly changing, totally digital academy) is for? Marmishness turned up in Michael Winerip’s column too, which suggests that a return to standards might be part of web whatever-point-0 we are up to. I hardly want to align myself with the boomers, but the idea that the evolution of digital media might not only go in a shorter and shorter and sloppier and sloppier direction is appealing. As I was trying to say in my takedown of Nicolai Ouroussoff (I reject the “savage” Curbed plastered on there) not everything that is new and shiny is a good idea, or even progress.

Now I need to go put on my bloomers and ride my bike, scandalizing the neighborhood.

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Alexandra Lange Alexandra Lange is an architecture and design critic, and author of Writing about Architecture: Mastering the Language of Buildings and Cities. (Princeton Architectural Press, 2012). Her work has appeared in The Architect’s Newspaper, Architectural Record, Dwell, Metropolis, Print, New York Magazine and The New York Times.


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