Pundit (expert)

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Description:
A pundit is someone who offers to mass media his or her opinion or commentary on a particular subject area (most typically political analysis, the social sciences or sport) on which they are "knowledgeable." The term has been increasingly applied to popular media personalities. In certain cases, it may be used in a derogatory manner as well, as the political equivalent of "ideologue."

Origins

The term originates from the Sanskritic term pandit, (paṇḍitá), meaning "learned" (see also Pandit). It refers to someone who is erudite in various subjects and who conducts religious ceremonies and offers counsel to the king and usually referred to a person from the Hindu Caste System of Brahmins.

From at least the early 19th century, a Pundit of the Supreme Court in Colonial India was an officer of the judiciary who advised British judges on questions of Hindu law. In Anglo-Indian use, pundit also referred to a native of India who was trained and employed by the British to survey inaccessible regions beyond the British frontier."pundit, n." in Oxford English Dictionary

Current use

In the English-speaking West, pundits write signed articles in print media (blurbs included), and appear on radio, television, or the internet with opinions on current events. Television pundits may also be referred to as talking heads. In a BBC television interview following the murder of John Lennon, former...
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