A second BBC Radio 4 series of Stephen Fry's witty and incisive programmes looking at the oddities of the English language. Includes four 30-minute Radio 4 programmes presented by Stephen Fry indulging his delight in the English language.
So Wrong It's Right - Stephen Fry examines how 'wrong' English can become right English, such as more people use the word 'wireless' in a computer context than in a radio one. With help from a lexicographer, an educationalist a Times Sub Editor and a judge, Fry examines the way usage changes language.
Speaking Proper - Stephen Fry looks at the changes in what we used to call 'elocution'.
Hello - Stephen Fry offers a 'sweetie' in the form of an investigation into the planet's most universally understood word.
The Joy of Gibberish - Stephen Fry investigates the phenomenon of gibberish - what it is, why we write and speak and sing it, and why we enjoy it so much. Words like awaopbopbaloobop awop bam bam and Bill and Ben's contemporary sounding catchphrase: blogalog.
As heard on Radio 4 during in August 2009.
©2009 Testbed Audio Ltd (P)2010 BBC Audiobooks Ltd
Funny, clever, curious
This series provides fascinating snippets about the English language in ways that are both down-to-earth and self-deprecatingly snobby. Fry points out the silliness of being precious about language rules when they are mostly arbitrary and always shifting. And yet, his audience (well, this little bit of it certainly) is no doubt quite picky about the position of the apostrophe. He chides us in a gentle, interesting and above all, amusing way. I listened to this audiobook on a rather boring car drive and found myself smiling frequently and occasionally even LOLling.
"Unsurpassed Audio Entertainment"
I can see it now - the reviews for this are mostly going to say something to the effect of 'Good, but doesn't live up to its predecessor'. Having listened to the previous one, I wholeheartedly agree: this isn't as good as the previous one...
...But then there's the competition. There are many fine audio books out there, but few so engaging, entertaining & enlightening (in equal measure). And none have the poise & balance of Stephen Fry who seems to be a master of Taoist principles (i.e. never being too much of any one thing).
So, all in all, I commend this product as good stuff & ideal entertainment for listening to in the Car (I have shared this & Series 1 with friends & they all agree!)
Fry has set high standards for himself (especially with ?Fry and Laurie Read Daudet and Jerome? & ?Stephen Fry Presents - Short Stories by Anton Chekhov?) & although this isn't his best, it is still far above the efforts of other entertainers on Radio 4 & is up there in content with his QI work.
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