1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Christmas Dinner with two PhDs

Discussion in 'Teaching overseas' started by Mainwaring, Nov 22, 2009.

  1. Mainwaring

    Mainwaring Established commenter

    Some thoughts inspired by the 'split infinitive' discussion on another thread:
    My friends Dr Raymond (from Maine) and Dr Tony (from Sussex) will shortly be flying in to celebrate Christmas with us here in Al Andalus. Some time ago when I mentioned that I had lunched with two PhDs my old friend Professor Clovis responded with withering scorn, pointing out that a PhD was not in fact a person but an illuminated document awarded by a university.
    While I normally place complete confidence in the wisdom of Professor Clovis in all matters of philology, philosophy, politics, percolation, religion, metaphysics, stylistics, semantics, linguistics, ethics, Essex and excavation, I'm wondering if he is quite correct on this particular point.
    Is it permissible to write 'I'm going to have a boozy Christmas dinner with two PhDs' or must I say 'I am destined to partake of festive cheer with two gentlemen who have been awarded the distinction of doctorates by their respective academic institutions'?
    Would any colleague care to comment?
     
  2. Mainwaring

    Mainwaring Established commenter

    Some thoughts inspired by the 'split infinitive' discussion on another thread:
    My friends Dr Raymond (from Maine) and Dr Tony (from Sussex) will shortly be flying in to celebrate Christmas with us here in Al Andalus. Some time ago when I mentioned that I had lunched with two PhDs my old friend Professor Clovis responded with withering scorn, pointing out that a PhD was not in fact a person but an illuminated document awarded by a university.
    While I normally place complete confidence in the wisdom of Professor Clovis in all matters of philology, philosophy, politics, percolation, religion, metaphysics, stylistics, semantics, linguistics, ethics, Essex and excavation, I'm wondering if he is quite correct on this particular point.
    Is it permissible to write 'I'm going to have a boozy Christmas dinner with two PhDs' or must I say 'I am destined to partake of festive cheer with two gentlemen who have been awarded the distinction of doctorates by their respective academic institutions'?
    Would any colleague care to comment?
     

  3. I would reckon that you are correct.
    If it is ok to say something like "I lunched with two MDs" then I don't see why you couldn't say the same about PhDs.
    I suppose it's the context we use the terms in - whether you are talking about a certifcate or a person
    You could say something like "I have been awarded a PhD" meaning I have been awarded a Doctorate of Philosophy
    or you could quite validly say something like "he is a Phd" meaning he is a Doctor of Philosophy.
     
  4. But does it really matter if we know exactly what you mean?
     
  5. I'm going home for a couple of weeks to beer up with my d**khead mates.
    Am I allowed to call them that?
    I am as long they don't hear about it.
    Surprisingly, you might be to hear, Clovis won't be there.....
     
  6. I suppose you are - they're probably saying the same. [​IMG]

    Going for all of the eid? Is your school shutting down for the extra few days as well?

     
  7. lunarita

    lunarita Established commenter

    I 'd like to think that the people I'll be celebrating Christmas with could think of a better way to describe me than by my qualifications - or my job for that matter.
     
  8. such as....
     
  9. Dr CO Jones

    Dr CO Jones New commenter

    So you don't have a PhD?
     
  10. You misunderstand, old sort, 'd**khead' isn't a profession; it's a way of life.
     
  11. Mainwaring

    Mainwaring Established commenter

    So would I, but if I remember correctly, the theme arose in a friendly teleological discussion with Prof. Clovis and I wanted to add a bit of academic muscle to the argument. I happened to be lunching the following day with the previously mentioned theologians and so I was able to consult them on the subject.
    Again, I agree with you but we'd probably be disappointed on that one, as it's almost inevitably the second (if not the first) question that strangers ask each other at any social gathering.
    Please excuse the abrasiveness of Dr. CO Jones, who's something of an academic snob and who <u>has</u> a PhD and two other hefty qualifications. Prof. Clovis doesn't have a PhD but he does have a JCB and of course a Chair. Also, I believe, some other interesting pieces of furniture acquired on his extensive travels.
    I shall think further about Dr Pharaoh's* interesting suggestion that characterising a person by his qualification is analogous to characterising his intellectual faculties by reference to his putative penile potential. There may be material there for a paper.
    *Only an honorary doctorate, I'm afraid, from the University of Kempston.
     
  12. Dr CO Jones

    Dr CO Jones New commenter

    Good point, but Prof Clovis is something of an academic stickler. In any case, he's never rated comprehensibilty particularly highly.
     
  13. ..sorry lads but this stuff is really becoming somewhat dreary .....Clovis etc.......an old boy's club it seems!!... and in parts a bit like reading someone's mail! Couldn't much of this be pm'd?? [​IMG]
     
  14. Dr CO Jones

    Dr CO Jones New commenter

    Dreary? If you think this is dreary you should try reading the 'Australia is the best country' thread.
    Oops! Sorry! You wrote most of it, didn't you?
     
  15. Maybe you could find some statistics about the use of split infinitives. I'll bet that the British don't split infinitives as much as Australians.

     
  16. To drearily go where no Australian has gone before
     
  17. Dr CO Jones

    Dr CO Jones New commenter

    I'll bet they don't put Vegemite on their turkey either.
     
  18. lunarita

    lunarita Established commenter

    You don't remember Jane and Joe, do you?
     
  19. Are you alright, Ned? That must have been like walking into a wall. Several walls.
    Who's Jane and Joe (I know I should have written 'who are' but....)?
     
  20. Mainwaring

    Mainwaring Established commenter

    Would it not be well to draw a veil over those dark days when innocent childen were abused by being deprived of tea and sofas? I understand that poor Clinical Joe is still chained to a bed in Australia. That must count as cruel and unnatural punishment. Australia, I mean, not the chaining up.
     

Share This Page