Women’s Day

Happy Women’s Day.

I don’t know about you, but I had not previously heard so much about International Women’s Day before this year. Perhaps in large part to the recent politicized news about women’s rights, health, and the increase in social media sharing with Twitter, facebook, and blogs, the news is just easier to access?

There were protests in Turkey and around the world to remind people of all nations that women are still treated unfairly to a large extent.

Perhaps the most interesting article I found was from Alternet.org, which discusses the increased awareness towards the sexist and anti-women messages coming out of recent Republican debates.

Of course, this increased awareness in America about our own problems is a good thing, but as the article points out, there are women who are still suffering  around the world as a result of inequality, subjection, patriarchy, and lack of adequate healthcare access.

This holiday interests me, and am eager for your thoughts about it.

What is your favorite or least favorite thing about Women’s Day?  Do you see it as problematic in any way, as a necessary celebration, as your favorite day of the year?

Look forward to hearing from you,

Miss E

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The “Best” Way to Say Goodbye

“Best?”

I have been thinking about something often lately. If I’m honest, it’s something pretty dorky and academic, although as you may have noticed, looking for pemberley supports both of those things. This post has nothing to do with my current or previous research, thesis, or the research of my friends and former colleagues that I am aware of, although if one of you rhetoric folks is reading and would like to speak up about this, I would love it.

For some reason I am endlessly fascinated by e-mail closings. I currently work in an office setting, and sometimes I send out e-mails to various contacts all day. My go-to e-mail closing, instead of sincerely or regards, etc. is “Best.”

Even though I have signed my e-mails with this closing for around 3 years now, I never thought I would adopt “Best” or become so attached to it as quickly as I have. There are unique and interesting ways to sign letters and e-mails, but best is a popular closing in academia. It is short, sweet, and somewhat formal, and has a nod to the closing “All the best,” but with less effort. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, here is an example of what I mean by “Best” –

“Best,

[Insert Name]”

I like the closing now, but it has taken me a few years of exposure to warm up to it. I had a professor in undergrad who signed their name with “Best,” but this professor’s name also began with a B, so it was alliterative. However, a couple of years into college, I realized that more and more profs were ending their e-mails this way, and it drove me nuts after a while. I really thought they were all copying my first professor who did it, until I got to grad school. Then I realized that a lot people sign using “Best,” and I began to see the appeal of it in my own e-mails, despite being frustrated that I couldn’t come up with something more creative.

It was after I have re-entered the 9-5 working world, and have continued to sign my e-mails with “Best,” that I have realized not many people outside of the academe sign their e-mails this way. Common closings I see at work include:

No Transition Word:

[end of message text.]

[Insert Name Here]

Formal:

“Sincerely,

[Insert Name Here]”

 “Warmest Regards,

[Insert Name Here]”

Emphatic:

“Thank you!

[Insert Name Here]”

“Cheers!

[Insert Name Here]”

You get the idea. There are various e-mail closings, and people choose their closing for different reasons depending on the e-mail, the message, and the audience. Each closing is a specific rhetorical choice, but I feel like “Best,” more so than other closings, could be considered a rhetorical move that signifies busy but still professional, casual but still fairly traditional, and generally an academic.

I may be reading into this a little too much, but I have yet to get an independent e-mail or first response e-mail in my inbox at work from a non-academic that closes with “Best.” On the other hand, most of the e-mails I receive from other academics – although not all academics sign with the same closing of course -usually do seem to end with “Best.” When I use it, I do feel like I am marking myself as an academic, and that I specifically use it to enter academic conversations. What do you guys think?

Best,

Miss E