The New Doublespeak: No One Knows What Anyone's Saying Anymore

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9780060928391: The New Doublespeak: No One Knows What Anyone's Saying Anymore

Doublespeak is language that is evasive, deceptive, self-contradictory, or misleading. It turns lies told by politicians into "strategic misrepresentations" or "reality augmentation," and ordinary sewage sludge into "regulated organic nutrients" that doesn't stink but merely "exceeds the odor threshold."

In this pithy sequel to his bestselling Doublespeak, Lutz exposes the latest prevarications that permeate our public discourse, dissecting how they work, and showing how they affect us as individuals and as a nation. Most important, he shows how to demand clear communication, become critical consumers of language, and fight doublespeak in our homes, schools, workplaces, and the political arena.

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William Lutz, a professor of English at Rutgers University and former editor of the Quarterly Review of Doublespeak, has had enough of doublespeak--the inflated, involved and often deliberately ambiguous use of language or when "strategic misinterpretations" are used instead of lies. He argues that the practice has been growing in our culture, and he's right. In this book he reviews doubletalk by Democrats, Republicans, journalists, economists and Supreme Court justices, and shows how the repeated use of a phrase allows it to stay unchallenged in the lexicon. Say what you mean, argues Lutz, and we'll all be better off.

About the Author:

William Lutz was the head of the Committee on Public Doublespeak for 15 years, and editor of the Quarterly Review of Doublespeak for 14 years. He is professor of English at Rutgers University in Camden, New Jersey, and a member of the Pennsylvania Bar.

His previous books include Doublespeak: From Revenue Enhancement to Terminal Living and The Cambridge Thesaurus of American English. Lutz has appeared on numerous television and radio programs to publicize the dangers of doublespeak, including Today, Larry King Live, The CBS Evening News, The MacNeil Lehrer NewsHour, and National Public Radio's Morning Edition.

He lives in Haddonfield, New Jersey, with his wife, the novelist Denise Gess.

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