Tony Thorne, former Director of the Language Centre, now Language Consultant at King’s College London, records and writes about contemporary slang, the language of subcultures, particularly of young people - and other varieties of new language including political jargon, media catchphrases and ‘lifestyle’ terms. He has written, broadcast and lectured on these topics extensively in the UK and worldwide, most recently recording and analysing the language of Brexit and populism and of the COVID-19 pandemic, also commenting in the media on racist language and on the misuse of language by politicians and celebrities.
He previously wrote the ‘Last Word’ column in the Sunday Express newspaper and the ‘Yoofspeak’ column in the Times Educational Supplement.
Tony is the compiler of the four successive editions of Bloomsbury’s Dictionary of Contemporary Slang, and wrote The 100 Words That Make the English, a collection of cultural keywords, Fads, Fashions & Cults, the Dictionary of Popular Culture and Shoot the Puppy, a collection of buzzwords and jargon published by Penguin, as well as cultural histories and textbooks.
He has contributed to many specialist and learners’ dictionaries and to encyclopedias of language and linguistics.