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Malapropisms in the Poisonwood Bible
Transcript of Malapropisms in the Poisonwood Bible
the unintentional, humorous misuse or distortion of a word or phrase; especially the use of a word sounding somewhat like the one intended but ludicrously wrong in the context.
"Already I was heavy-hearted in my soul for the flush commodes and machine-washed clothes and other simple things in life I have took for
"We just got shoved straight into the heathen
"A roar of voices and weird birds
my ears and filled my head to the brink." *Bombarded
"I sat breathing through my nose, holding in my mouth the pure, awful
of something on fire..."
"Then she'd stomp out to the kitchen hut and build such a huge fire in the iron stove you'd think she was Cape
launching a rocket ship."
"It gave him a mysterious air, like a
from the law."
"My sisters gawked at the fascinating stranger and hung on his every
"It would have to be worse than that dip-dip-dop
thing they use in the army."
"Try to get a boyfriend under those conditions: believe you me, your chances are
"Oh, whatever would I do without my child-
sister to tell me what ."
"Mother was confused, but she always has the good manners to be
even to perfect strangers."
"I'm willing to be a
"I feel like Gulliver among the
"I prefer to remain
"And since it was about the only jewelry I'd seen in an entire year, it could have been diamonds-- I was that
"But I suppose it was a
gesture on his part."
"I would have to ask Leah if an
sent out good things or bad."
"Nelson says every person in the village is to be there, required
"Naturally Father had his own
for the meeting."
"Its my girlfriends here in Joburg that have taught me how to give parties, keep a close eye on the help, and just overall make the grateful transition to wifehood and
"Maybe he's been in Africa so long he has forgotten that we Christians have our own system of marriage, and it is called
"...though I have to admit they've picked up a few
phrases from my guests, over the years."
"But it sure gives you something to
1. What substance do you think Rachel's malapropisms added to the novel?
2. Are they necessary to the novel?