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Author Topic: Define passive-aggressive  (Read 3782 times)

Edvard

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Define passive-aggressive
« on: May 23, 2007, 02:56:15 PM »
Passive-Aggressive notes from Roommates, Neighbors, Coworkers and Strangers.
Quote
For the purposes of this project, we’re using a pretty broad (and to some extent, arbitrary) definition of “passive-aggressive” that roughly correlates with how the term is popularly used. (most people don’t go diving for the dsm IV when someone describes his or her roommate as “so passive-aggressive” — or “so antisocial” or “so sadistic” or “so schizo,” for that matter.)

Some of the notes here are really more aggressive in tone, and some of them are more passive — polite, even — but they all share a common sense of frustration that’s been channeled into a written note rather than a direct confrontation. while it may be more accurate, “@$$hole-ish notes from roommates, neighbors, coworkers and strangers” (or “well-deserved notes from roommates…”) just doesn’t roll off the tongue quite as easily, you know?



from Admit-One.net

mouser

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Re: Define passive-aggressive
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2007, 03:45:54 PM »
as the quote above says, most of these aren't really "passive aggressive" which is bound to confuse anyone who is interested in learning what that phrase means.

from merriam-webster:
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passive-aggresive: being, marked by, or displaying behavior characterized by the expression of negative feelings, resentment, and aggression in an unassertive passive way (as through procrastination and stubbornness)

an example would be telling your roomate that you wish you had been able to get more schoolwork done but it's hard for you to concentrate when there is a lot of noise (it's *passive* aggressive because what you are really *wanting* to say to roomate is: stop playing your music so loud!).

Darwin

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Re: Define passive-aggressive
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2007, 04:04:31 PM »
I was quite taken by Acts One and Two of the Mad Bomber trilogy (Act three to come, apparently). I rather think that the erstwhile custodial engineer is rather missing the point of the "act". I truly believe that in this case the medium IS the message...
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

app103

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Re: Define passive-aggressive
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2007, 04:47:00 PM »
an example would be telling your roomate that you wish you had been able to get more schoolwork done but it's hard for you to concentrate when there is a lot of noise (it's *passive* aggressive because what you are really *wanting* to say to roomate is: stop playing your music so loud!).

That would be an example of being polite.  :D

I think a more accurate example would be if you ask someone to do something, and rather than them telling you they don't want to do it, they agree to do it but then take forever to do it, so essentially, it never gets done. Or they deliberately do it badly so you'll never ask them again. They don't have the guts to tell you 'no'...but their actions are conveying their thoughts & feelings in a passive-aggressive way.

It allows them to get out of doing something they don't want to do, without being confrontational about it.

A perfect example would be the old Bill Cosby story about his wife asking him to make the kids breakfast. He doesn't want to, but she is in a bad mood so he doesn't dare tell her that. Instead, he goes downstairs and feeds them all chocolate cake. When she finds out and freaks out, his reasoning behind it was that cake contains eggs, milk, flour...all the things in pancakes...it's nutritious...and then adds that they wanted the chocolate cake...they asked for it (blaming the kids for his screw up). So she never asks him to make breakfast again, because she doesn't want him to screw it up again.  ;D

mouser

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Re: Define passive-aggressive
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2007, 05:58:39 PM »
even better  :up:

Edvard

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Re: Define passive-aggressive
« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2007, 06:00:26 PM »
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A perfect example would be the old Bill Cosby story about his wife asking him to make the kids breakfast. ...
Good one, app. Fine example

Mouser:
Quote
most of these aren't really "passive aggressive" which is bound to confuse anyone who is interested in learning what that phrase means.
Well, considering that a great many native speakers barely have a grasp of the english language, I wouldn't really worry about anybody getting confused by a humourous website. The same people learned the word "ironic" from a Alanis Morrisette song... :nono2:

Darwin:
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I truly believe that in this case the medium IS the message...
;D