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    #1

    if someone calls a person "brokeback", what does he mean?

    i found this expression in the Ballad of The Sad Cafe, which was written in the 1950s when the novel BrokebackMoutain had not yet come up.

    so in the English culture, if someone calls a person "brokeback", what does he possibly mean?

  1. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: if someone calls a person "brokeback", what does he mean?

    I googled your Ballad of the Sad Cafe, and found that one of the characters is a hunchback.

    So: brokeback = hunchback.

  2. Munch's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: if someone calls a person "brokeback", what does he mean?

    According to Wikitionary, your example is the first recorded use of "brokeback". I presume Carson McCullers did not invent it though. I would guess it is a southern US regionalism.

    If it Wikitionary is correct, it means "hunchback" - a person whose back is so bad they are permanently bent over.

    By the way, if you can understand Carson McCullers you are doing well. As a native (Australian) English speaker, I sometimes have to re-read her sentences because of unfamiliar phrasing or vocabulary.

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    #4

    Re: if someone calls a person "brokeback", what does he mean?

    And 'Brokeback Mountain' (the geographical feature) was presumably so named because of the likeness to a physical feature - like 'The Paps of Jura' or many other mountains.

    b

    PS ...or 'Arthur's Seat' near Edinburgh. I guess that's the furniture rather than the feature, but you never know... (Strange that the first two examples I've found are both in Scotland... But here's an English one: 'The Hog's Back' (south of London - Surrey or Hampshire, I'm not sure.)
    Last edited by BobK; 12-Nov-2010 at 13:45. Reason: Added PS

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