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Schadenfreude - an update

Posted by Anders on April 02, 2003

In Reply to: Schadenfreude - an update posted by Bob on April 02, 2003

I sent my suggestion (misglee) to the Times, but, alas, too late. They now have a new theme, and misglee has not appeared. I found it very interesting to learn about 'the Beowulfian "mischanceglee"', which I did not know of when contributing 'misglee'. Misglee, of course, could be seen as a short version of the, to my mind, overlong mischanceglee. Also, I prefer 'misglee' as 'mis' modifies 'glee' and thus signifies 'perverted glee'. 'Mischanceglee' is just 'glee in the face of mischance'. Whereas this may be said to be equally perverted on a conceptual level, this is not made explicit by the grammar of the word. Hence, I prefer 'misglee'.

Now to malisfaction, which, I take it, is a contraction of 'malice' and 'satisfaction'. Very clever! However, what is being SATISFIED by 'schadenfreude'? The DESIRE for evil? It seems absurd to me, although some people, alas, seem to wish that 'something wicked this way comes'.

: : : Some suggestions were published in today's Times.

: : : Further to your previous answer (Q&A, March 28), while working in Germany I was asked by a German colleague how "Schadenfreude" translates into English. Knowing of no single-word translation, I looked it up and found it translated as "malicious glee".
: : : What is odd is that I found this information not in a dictionary, but in a publication entitled Helpful Hints and Friendly Advice for the Traveller.
: : : Paul Arden-Griffith, London SE18

: : : What about the Beowulfian "mischanceglee"or the more Orwellian "woedelight"?
: : : John Mumford, Glasgow

: : : Flopjoy? Fallglee? Tripgiggle? Failfun? Crashlaugh? There are lots.
: : : James McGrory, Tashkent, Uzbekistan

: : : What about "malisfaction"?
: : : M. F. Wilson, Doncaster

: : : "Servesuright".
: : : John O?Byrne, Dublin

: : Good answers! My vote goes to "malisfaction."

: Me too! A great neologism. We'll get Mick to sing it: "I regret no-o, malisfaction..."