Conflict v Confliction

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Conflict v Confliction

Post by auswede » Mon Jun 13, 2005 12:49 am

Hi guys,
I was wondering if you could help settle something for me. I know someone who often uses the term confliction in the context of "Look I didn't want to cause any confliction" as in an argument between people...now I and anyone else I've ever known has always said in this situation "I don't want to cause conflict", I've never heard it being stated the way she does....is it acceptable to use the word confliction as she does?
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Bobinwales » Mon Jun 13, 2005 1:08 pm

You don't tell us where you live, so it makes advice a little difficult. I have never heard the word, and it doesn't appear in any of the UK dictionaries I checked, with the single exception of my M$oft spell-check. However, Merriam-Webster shows confliction as a noun meaning antagonism or irreconcilability. So I would say that it is possible that it is a legitimate phrase on the left hand side of the Pond, but would sound strange on the right.
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Signature: All those years gone to waist!
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Shelley » Mon Jun 13, 2005 3:50 pm

I note you didn't get a response the first time around on this issue.
I don't think your acquaintance is using the word incorrectly, exactly. It's a nice blend of conflict and friction.
I think this is a matter of personal style. She seems to use a style of speech in which more words (or syllables, in this case) are better than less words/syllables. To you, less is better. I wouldn't risk a friendship over it.
There are plenty of words that are used with added syllables which drive me mad: "orientate" for orient; "analyzation" for analysis are two that come to mind. If it's in the dictionary its use can be forgiven, but I don't have to like it!
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Phil White » Mon Jun 13, 2005 7:04 pm

The Webster's Unabridged gives
confliction: the process of conflicting or state of being in conflict.
The Shorter OED gives (under "conflict")
confliction: the action of conflicting; state of conflict.
By these definitions, your friend's use would be incorrect. I've never heard the term and I'm not at all sure what to make of the definitions above. I can't think of an occasion when I may wish to draw the fine distinction. (But everybody here knows me to be a reasonable, peace-loving person...)
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by dragonback » Tue Jun 14, 2005 11:47 am

Auswede..... your as confused as the rest of Australia... I wish BB would tell her what a boob she is making of herself and put us out of our misery
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Shelley » Tue Jun 14, 2005 1:27 pm

Phil White, I don't understand why her usage is incorrect. The Webster's and OED definitions you cited call the word a state of being in conflict, or a state of conflict, and she's saying she doesn't want to cause "a state of conflict", or "a confliction". Would she be correct to say "I wouldn't want to cause confliction"? I admit I wouldn't use it, but I don't think it's strictly incorrect here. My question is whether or not a state of being can be a noun (in some cases). Is a state of being anything - ever - a noun? Maybe I just missed this in Junior High English class. Would you take the time to enlighten me? I'd appreciate it, because I'm trying to toss out the incorrect notions in my brain to make room for things like my phone number and passwords.
Peace, man.
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Phil White » Tue Jun 14, 2005 3:54 pm

Shelley,
The original post suggested that the term was being used synonymously with "conflict", and the dictionaries suggest that there is a fine distinction. I suggested that if the dictionaries' definitions are correct, then it is incorrect to use the terms synonymously with each other. But I did also call the definitions into question.

If the definitions are valid (and I am increasingly disinclined to think that they are), then a "confliction" (a state of conflict) is not exactly the same thing as a "conflict", in the same way that "a state of war" into which the leaders of two or more nations lead their people is not the same as a "war" in which people bomb and butcher and get bombed and butchered. "I don't want to cause a confliction" is thus a grammatically (and semantically) valid thing to say, but is not semantically identical with "I don't want to cause a conflict".

But (and it's a big "but") that's not the way most people appear to use the terms. Googling "conflict" and "confliction" yields a surprising (to me) 6000+ texts that use both terms, and in the 20 or so random texts I looked at, the terms appear to be used interchangeably. If there was any difference, it occasionally appeared to me that "confliction" was being used in the sense of "friction leading up to or with the potential of conflict" or "a conflictive situation", but that could well be me over-interpreting on the basis of the dictionary definitions.

All in all, I think the dictionaries get a thumbs-down on that one and auswede's friend is using the word in the way that most people do, namely as a synonym for "conflict". It appears that the criticism occasionally levelled at me (namely putting too much trust in the "authorities") has proved to be justified for a change.
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Shelley » Tue Jun 14, 2005 6:06 pm

Many thanks for clarifying that. I'm reminded that dictionaries are considered histories, and the authority in them changes with popular use. Although I favor peace, "confliction resolution" sounds pretty awful, and should be avoided completely.
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Phil White » Tue Jun 14, 2005 6:54 pm

I was gobsmacked by how often it comes up. One interesting one, though, was "potential confliction" in the context of air traffic control, which seems to make sense. "Potential conflict" in that context actually sounds wrong.
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Shelley » Tue Jun 14, 2005 8:22 pm

Yes, I imagine the potential friction of conflicting fuselages (fuselagi?) would cause quite a confliction; not to mention a conflagration!
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Erik_Kowal » Wed Jun 15, 2005 12:05 am

An example of confliction resolution in action?
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Clark » Tue Jan 15, 2008 3:36 am

Hi all, confliction is most certainly a word, but I don't think the friend is using it correctly. It appears to me that confliction pertains more to "conflicting" rather than to "conflict," and that the meaning of the latter word is probably her intent.

For ex., the Oxford English Dictionary defines confliction as: The action of conflicting; conflicting condition.

To be simple, conflict is a state of disagreement, while confliction is a state of contradiction.
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by gdwdwrkr » Tue Jan 15, 2008 9:45 am

Nice conflictionary utilizations.
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Phil White » Tue Jan 15, 2008 5:58 pm

Er, yes. Read the thread and you'll see that definition already.
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Conflict v Confliction

Post by Clark » Tue Jan 15, 2008 6:54 pm

Thanks Phil, your earlier "over[ly]-interpreting" post did in fact lay the groundwork for my brief clarification, I agree.
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End of topic.
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