Skeptical Linguistic Essays

By Paul M. Postal | Go to book overview

9
Junk Ethics 1
Advances in Linguistic Rhetoric

Linguistics can be hard work. The attempt to develop insightful descriptions or theories of NLs can be extraordinarily taxing to the mind/brain. Almost every day another promising linguist keels over from the strain of marshaling facts, drawing distinctions, and postulating entities. Reliable techniques for stress reduction and lifestyle management are thus an urgent necessity for the linguistics community. It is toward the goal of meeting this need that attention is turned in the following remarks.

How can linguists successfully struggle against those who, like hungry vultures, hover ready to criticize, counterexemplify, refute? The answer is rhetoric, the art of convincing one's audience without benefit of logic. (More accurately, regardless of logic. No one has shown that it is actually disadvantageous to have a sound argument on one's side; it is merely unnecessary in linguistics, I will argue. )

Great strides are being made in linguistic rhetoric, whose progress puts the stasis in mere description and theorizing to shame. In the great rhetoric laboratories of the northeastern United States, defensive shields are being perfected that can render any theory virtually impervious to factual corrosion.

Moreover, essentially no risk attaches to the rhetorical techniques reviewed here. Each one simply generalizes techniques already effectively used by leading (often tenured) linguistics practitioners and published in top linguistics journals or in books by reputable international publishers. The only contribution of the guide offered here is to codify and publicize already developed methods so that they can be utilized by the broad mass of the overburdened linguistic workforce and not just by an elite few.

Let us begin with a familiar problem. You have a desired consequence that explains your data just right but face the demanding, perhaps impossible task of show

-286-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Skeptical Linguistic Essays
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 414

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.