Saturday, 4 May 2013

Status quo and status quo ante

 The Hindu on April 23 had this headline, Revert to status quo, India tells China.

Today, DNA slugged a story on Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid's China visit, thus: India wants the platoon of Chinese troops, who have erected their tents in that area, to pull back and restore the status quo.

On March 23 The Hindu had used status quo in a headline.

This usage is incorrect. Once something changes, it is not status quo, and when it has to be taken back to what it was, then it is to status quo ante. Merriam-Webster says status quo ante "s the state of affairs that existed previously". 

What India is dealing with is the status quo - about the here and now - of Chinese troops on Indian side. If they leave, then they situation would not be to status quo but to status quo anteStatus quo, as the same dictionary says, is "the existing state of affairs".

No comments: