The Leaning Tower of Babel

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9781585790036: The Leaning Tower of Babel

Twenty-odd years ago, Richard Mitchell, a professor at New Jersey’s Glassboro State College, set out on a quixotic pursuit: the rescue of the English language and the minds of those attached to the world by it. Donning cape and mask as “The Underground Grammarian,” Mitchell sallied forth upon his newsletter against the nonsense being spoken, written, and, indeed, encouraged by the educational establishment. (“One thing led to another,” as he tells it, “a front page piece in The Wall Street Journal, a proŞle in Time, and other such. Before it was over, The Underground Grammarian came to be, in the world of desktop printing, the Şrst publication to have subscribers on every continent except Antarctica.”) What began as a vivid catalog of ignorance and inanity in the written work of professional educators and their hapless students soon became an enterprise of most noble moment: an investigation, via mordant wit and Şerce intelligence, of “what we might usefully decide to mean by ‘education.’” The results of Mitchell’s inquiries are as stimulating today as they were when Şrst articulated. His project remains a telling explication of how, through writing, we discover thought and make knowledge. It is certainly the most drolly entertaining.

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Richard Mitchell
Published by Bloomsbury Pub Ltd (2000)
ISBN 10: 1585790036 ISBN 13: 9781585790036
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Mitchell, Richard
Published by Bloomsbury Pub Ltd
ISBN 10: 1585790036 ISBN 13: 9781585790036
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