“Honestly, it’s like hearing your grandmother swear”

That’s how one blogger described his feelings when he discovered that the English edition of Pope Benedict’s encyclical, Caritas in Veritate, contains the American slang term: “downsizing.”

I can kind of see his point about “downsizing” being an infelicitous translation of the Italian riduzione and the German reduzierung. But then, never having heard either of my grandmothers swear, I have nothing to compare it to.


  1. Oli

    Surely there are more important points to take from this encyclical?!?!?

  2. crazylikeknoxes

    I wonder why no Latin version of the text is (yet) available?

  3. Patrick Madrid

    Oli, come one. This was intended to be lighthearted. Surely you can see that.

  4. Oli

    : )I enjoyed your post, and actually wanted to say that my grandma swearing doesn't shock me too much, given that she drove lorries in WW2 so occasionally lets the odd one slip…!I suppose it is just that your blogger friend taking offence at a word such as downsizing, which, however slangy, jargonny and obnoxious, is in common parlance, can really detract from the real message- so often the media just pick up on one phrase and ignore everything else.But to be positive! You have a great blog- please keep up the good work and the humour!

  5. jbecknell

    Patrick, I knew Oli, I worked with Oli, and Patrick, Oli is no Surely.

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