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In North America and Europe, the rise of the “far-right” and “neonationalist” movements in the last two decades have triggered and relied on online belligerence of racialized joking, intimidation and “fact-filled” untruths (Banks & Gingrich, 2006; Hervik 2016). (Source)

What is the meaning of "fact-filled" in the above sentence. It seems a quite recently made-up word to me, and I couldn't find it defined anywhere.

  • Here is what is really weird: the book by Banks and Gingrich (Neo-nationalism in Europe and Beyond: etc.) is edited by those two gentlemen. A search inside the book reveals not one occurrence of untruth or untruths. That said,fact-filled is not made up at all: a fact-filled book or presentation for instance. I don't see why your author puts those specific words in quotes. That said, "fact-filled" untruths is an oxymoron. Unless, for that specific term, the call-for-papers people are being sarcastic on purpose. If that is the case, why is far-right and neo-nationalist in quote marks? – Lambie Oct 26 '18 at 23:02
  • But one of them is one of the authors in the book, edited by B&G and where the word untruth does not appear. – Lambie Oct 26 '18 at 23:06
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    Note that the term is in quotes. That completely changes its meaning. The implication is that the "untruths" (not scare quotes!) are filled with bogus claims which are presented as "facts". – Hot Licks Oct 26 '18 at 23:31
  • @Lambie I don't know! – Sasan Oct 27 '18 at 1:20
  • @HotLicks, Oh, so far right and nationalist are not "real" either? They are bogus? You can't have it both ways in the same paragraph. You can have quote quote alongside scare quotes and why would the other two terms be in quotes anyway? – Lambie Oct 27 '18 at 15:14
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The meaning of fact-filled itself, is simply something that is full of facts—or truths.

In the quotation, however, fact-filled has been put inside so-called scare quotes.

From Merriam-Webster's definition of scare quotes:

quotation marks used to express especially skepticism or derision concerning the use of the enclosed word or phrase

In other words, putting "fact-filled" in quotation marks here means that the author of the quotation is claiming that statements supposedly full of facts are not actually factual at all. Instead, rather than being fact-filled, the statements are full of untruths.

The passage could have been as easily understood if they had not bothered to write "fact-filled" at all, but just left it as "intimidation and untruths." For some reason, it seems they wanted to express an emotional disdain for the authors of the referenced book.

  • You surprise me. There are three words in quotes. You can't use quotes two different ways in the same paragraph. Regular quotes and scare quotes. So nationalist is not neo-nationalist and far-right are not those things really? – Lambie Oct 27 '18 at 15:17
  • @Lambie Sure you can. It's unusual and confusing, but it can still be done. All in all, it's an example of poor writing. – Jason Bassford Supports Monica Oct 27 '18 at 15:57
  • I disagree completely because you have to say one or the other. Not both. And fact-filled untruths is an oxymoron. – Lambie Oct 27 '18 at 16:01
  • @Lambie If I were editing the passage, I wouldn't have allowed the use of the scare quotes—for the very reason you give. It's confusing and, stylistically poor. I think it might be even worse that that. I think the book may have actually used the term "fact-filled." So I suspect (to my increased dismay) that the quotation marks are being "overloaded" and used as both regular quotation marks and scare quotes at the same time. (But I'm not going to read the cited book to find out.) The fact that it is an oxymoron is the very reason for believing in scare quotes in the first place. – Jason Bassford Supports Monica Oct 27 '18 at 16:07
  • If you had read my original comment, you would see I went to the book, and could not find one mention of "untruths". It is not in the book. And I would argue against this use here. Untruths is enough. – Lambie Oct 27 '18 at 16:09
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fact filled is listed as a compound adjective in OED

and gives an example of use:

2006 D. J. Weiss Anal. Variance & Functional Measurem. vi. 68 A third instructor gave rich, fact-filled lectures and easy exams, while the fourth instructor gave rich, fact-filled lectures and hard exams.

used as

"fact filled"

raises the question of the validity of said facts.

  • But that doesn't explain the meaning of "fact-filled" (with scare quotes). – Hot Licks Oct 27 '18 at 0:47

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