Hyphen power

Whereas some critics invoke the hyphenated form 'post-colonialism' as a decisive temporal marker of the decolonising process, others fiercely query the implied chronological separation between colonialism and its aftermath - on the grounds that the postcolonial condition is inaugurated with the onset rather than the end of colonial occupation. Accordingly, it is argued that the unbroken term 'postcolonialism' is more sensitive to the long history of colonial consequences.

From Leela Gandh, "After Colonialism."

Setting aside the awkwardness of the writing in this passage, I want to point out one thing: Christians aren't the only ones who argue over grammar. The folks in the literary world understand the power of naming, and even of hyphenating. It's tempting to mock such myopia, but then I step back and remember that the Church split over an iota. It's not whether language reflects and shapes reality. It's what that reality is.

And you have to laugh at the phrase "fiercely query."