This has bothered me for years, decades even. N-U-C-L-E-A-R is pronounced “new-clee-'r” not “nuke-you-ler”. Yet supposedly intelligent people, or rather those in the public eye who have people working for them who should know better, let this glaring mispronunciation go thru uncorrected.
It makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up. Presidential speech writers should type it ut phonetically. Hollywood (TV & movie) directors should get another take (and another and another if necessary) until the actor says the word correctly. There is no excuse for it!
pit pit pit
what caused me to bring this up? watching an ad for season 4 of 24
If I’m not consciously thinking about it, I say “nucular” myself, because that’s simply the way it comes out. I’m not entirely sure why, to myself and a large segment of the population, “nucular” is “easier” to pronounce that “nuclear”.
My guess is that ‘nucular’ seems easier because it’s in line with a lot of (indisputably acceptable) pronunciations like ‘muscular’ or ‘molecular’. As ‘muscular’ shows, derived forms are not always all that similar to root forms; if you want to logically argue that /nu kli @s/ -> /nu kli @er/, then you’ve got the problem of explaining why /mU sl/ -> /mUs kju l@r/. It’s a mistake to look for a neat logical correspondance between roots and derived forms. That’s just not how language works.
I think I’m the SDMB’s official nucular apologist, so I guess that’d be me.
acceptable to whom?
I never thought about “Wenzday” but you’re right - however I’ve never left the first R out of February because my parents wouldn’t let me. both mom and big bro were born in february
I don’t see it as snobbery to pronounce it “newclear”. If it is then most British folk would be snobs, along with probably the majority of English speaking people.
I could be wrong but it seems an American thing.