service

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by mathman, Jun 6, 2019.

  1. mathman Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,609
    The word serve is used in many contexts. For example, military service. Also public service. There is also the context of utilitarian - restaurant service, domestic service. These are all considered positive and usually voluntary activities.

    On the other had prison sentences are served also - a quite negative thing.

    How did these two extremely different concepts get to have the same terminology?
     
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  3. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    A1:
    Most things when qualified with context can be either positive or negative. Look:

    Green is usually associated with life and growth. But in the context of wellness, it is associated with nausea, toxicity and puking. How did these two extremely different concepts get to have the same terminology?


    She's a pretty girl.
    This tastes pretty disgusting.

    One's positive, one's negative.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2019
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  5. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    A2:
    Prisoners used to be tasked with breaking rocks to make crushed gravel for road building. That's a public service...
     
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  7. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    5,526
    Military service, public service, restaurant service, domestic service and prison-term service are all providing a benefit to the public.

    I'm not fond of the term "serving your country" in the context of military service. Rosie the Riveter serves her country as much as GI Joe. Maybe more.
     

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