The adjective appropriate means:: "Suitable for a particular person, condition, occasion, or place; fitting." and in the verb form the meaning becomes, "to set apart for specific use: To take possession of or make use of exclusively for oneself, often without permission."
And misappropriation is defined as, "to appropriate wrongly; To appropriate dishonestly for one's own use."
This is a transitive verb - which if you paid attention to your grammar lessons in school you know that means it needs a noun to misappropriate. Meaning, you're not just going to misappropriate - you're going to misappropriate SOMETHING. It will be specific, perhaps personal.
Now, I'm bordering on sounding a little too politically correct here - but word misappropriation is something I try to be consciously aware of. I have a few examples in my head. I'll talk about one today and some others will show up over the next few weeks. (Gotta space out the material!) But - I also want to spend some time talking about because I think language is so powerful - it is the basis of our communication and knowledge and how we understand and relate to other people. When our word choice does not acknowledge the history and connotations of the words - we do a disservice to ourselves and those we are in conversation with. When people are careful with word choice that they are able to communicate more clearly and succinctly. When people acknowledge the history and connotations of words they become more self reflective and that is a good thing. :)
So for today the word that I feel gets misappropriated to the detriment of the real meaning of the word is the word "starve" and its variations.
The majority of the people in the world who say "I'm starving" are really only hungry. And it's common to hear people point out that, no, you really aren't starving. The connotations between "starve" and "hunger" are apparent and clear. But, the word nerd that I am I decided to dig into the etymology of "to starve."
I was shocked to discover that "starve" comes from the Old English steorfan, "to die."
Before "starve" was associated with the lack of food, it was associated with death. In the 14th century it had a meaning of "to die with cold" and it wasn't until around 1520 that "starve" meant "to kill with hunger."
This is where I find that paying attention to if you are using words that are appropriate for the scenario increases your self-reflection and your connection to the world at large. If I can remember that I don't use the word "starving" became I am not - - then I am more likely to remember that there are indeed people who are. That there are people who are dying from the lack of food.