Verbal Blunders

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We all - some more than others - do it: the Freudian slips, the malapropisms, and spoonerisms, the ums and the uhs.

You say: "I caked a bake" and your friends laugh. President Bush "misunderestimates" and Senator John Kerry has it out for the "Wasabi Muslim Fundamentalists."

But why do we misspeak and what do all these bloopers say about us as humans and as a culture?

Language expert and linguist Michael Erard says blundering is important ... and how we stumble reveals an awful lot about who we are.

This hour On Point: a look at verbal slips and what it all means.


Michael Erard, freelance writer and author of "Um ... Slips, Stumbles, and Verbal Blunders, and What They Mean."

Jack Beatty, On Point News Analyst

This program aired on August 29, 2007.


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