Mary Norris, The New Yorker

Mary Norris

The New Yorker

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Past articles by Mary:

How I Spent My Summer Vacation

Mary Norris writes about her summer travel to South Korea, where she attended the Seoul International Book Fair and visited Sojeonseolim, a private library in Seoul where she hoped to see the library’s collection of a set of bound volumes of The New Yorker magazine. → Read More

My Last Visit with John Bennet

Mary Norris writes about her friendship and final visit with the longtime New Yorker editor, who learned in early June that he had pancreatic cancer, and his approach to writing and life. → Read More

The Dance Between Editor and Writer in “Turn Every Page”

Mary Norris writes about the documentary “Turn Every Page,” which is about the author Robert Caro and his editor Robert Gottlieb and is a rare window into a relationship that usually goes undocumented. → Read More

A Linguistic Look at Omicron

Mary Norris writes about the use of the Greek alphabet in designating different coronavirus variants—and how the different variants are going through the Greek alphabet quite quickly. → Read More

Grammar-Nerd Heaven

Mary Norris writes about a new exhibit at the Grolier Club, “Taming the Tongue: In the Heyday of English Grammar (1713-1851),” showcasing the English-usage expert Bryan A. Garner’s extensive collection of grammar books. → Read More

Making Peace with My Summer Neighbor

Mary Norris writes about the obnoxious habits of a neighbor in Rockaway Beach, Queens, and how a roof installation unexpectedly brought the two of them closer. → Read More

Stet!, the Hot New Language Game

Mary Norris writes about Stet!, a new copy-editing card game based on “Dreyer’s English,” by Benjamin Dreyer, and “That Word Chat,” a lexicographical Zoom gathering hosted by Mark Allen. → Read More

“The Rime of the Ancient Mariner”: The Epic Poem You Need for Quarantine

Mary Norris writes about an online reading of Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s epic poem “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” that launched in mid-April, pairing a different reader with a work of art over the course of forty days. → Read More

“A Way with Words” Is “Car Talk” for Lexiphiles

Scouting for words to talk about is a constant effort, but it comes naturally to the radio show’s co-hosts, a writer in love with so-called dead languages and a linguist with an ear for contemporary slang. → Read More

Coronavirus-Quarantine Diary: Counting the Dead

Jacqueline Dupree, who works at the Washington Post, took a breather from counting coronavirus statistics last week to mark her own personal catastrophe: the death of her husband, three years earlier. → Read More

There’s a Lot More to E. Jean Carroll’s Book than Trump

“What Do We Need Men For?” has come to be defined by the advice columnist’s accusation of sexual assault against the President, but the book is also a work of comic genius. → Read More

Milk: It Does an Impeachment Good

Mary Norris writes on the expanding definition of milk, which was nominated to be one of the official beverages at Donald Trump’s impeachment trial in the Senate. → Read More

An Instant Classic About Learning Ancient Greek

With “La Lingua Geniale,” Andrea Marcolongo did something I had very much wanted to do: she wrote about classical Greek while young and freshly enamored of the beauty, economy, and subtlety of the language. → Read More

The Long Hot Summer of Grammar

The new book “Because Internet” examines how the Web has changed the way we write. Lionel Shriver and Jacob Rees-Mogg, meanwhile, want to turn back the linguistic clock. → Read More

Female Trouble: The Debate Over “Woman” as an Adjective

The question of whether the noun “woman” is a better adjective than “female” quickly becomes more political than grammatical. → Read More

Dropped Hyphens, Split Infinitives, and Other Thrilling Developments from the 2019 American Copy Editors Society Conference

Mary Norris writes on changes to style conventions at the 2019 American Copy Editors Society Conference, including dropped hyphens and split infinitives. → Read More

Lessons on the Royal We, from “Mary Queen of Scots” and “The Favourite”

“The Favourite” has kinkier sex scenes, but if there were a special award for use of the royal we, “Mary Queen of Scots” would triumph. → Read More

Greek to Me, by Mary Norris

The Comma Queen on the pleasures of a different alphabet. → Read More

Comma Queen: A Grammarian’s Xmas

Mary Norris writes about confusing examples of grammar and linguistics in Christmas carols and the holiday season. → Read More

Comma Queen: To Whom It May Concern

Mary Norris on the proper usage of “who” and “whom” and why the distinction matters. → Read More