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Could it be scarcastic?

Posted by Brian from Shawnee on June 19, 2006

In Reply to: Could it be scarcastic? posted by Smokey Stover on June 19, 2006

: : : : The saying: "Good for you!" followings someone's good fortune; Could it be scarcastic/jealousy??-Never got quite behind this one?

: : : Yes. Any positive statement of any kind can be rendered sarcastically.

: : You are so right, Bob!
: : L

: It is in the nature of sarcasm to be couched in deceptive language. However, that doesn't make all positive utterances suspect as possible examples of sarcasm. Most positive speech is just positive speech. Most people engaging in sarcasm wish it to be known, at least to some of their interlocutors, that they are being sarcastic. So most people have their antennae on the alert for possible sarcasm, and usually detect the tell-tale clues easily. Incidentally, sarcasm does not have to be directed towards someone actually present. Not only individual third parties, but whole institutions (such as the U.S. Congress) are constantly the object of sarcastic remarks. And it's hard to imagine women talking at any length about men without an abundance of sarcasm, if you care to read between the lines. Or even if you don't. SS

Some of the tell-tale signs of sarcasm are: an interjection like "oh" or "well" preceding the phrase and the lack of an exclamatory tone. "Oh, good for you." and "Well that's just great." The original poster's example included an exclamation point, and if that's the way he perceived it, then it probably was not meant sarcastically. Now of course there's a difference between being sarcastic and being disingenuous, so the person who says "Good for you!" but doesn't really mean it is just being phony, not sarcastic. As Smokey said, most people who are being sarcastic aren't trying to hide it. Sarcasm is all about tone.

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