New Books Network

Jeanne Fahnestock, “Rhetorical Style: The Uses of Language in Persuasion” (Oxford UP, 2011)
A thing I enjoy about this job is being encouraged to read books that unexpectedly turn out to be profoundly relevant to my own interests. Jeanne Fahnestock‘s new book, Rhetorical Style: The Uses of Language in Persuasion (Oxford University Press, 2011), turns out to be just such a volume. I... Read More
Robert F. Barsky and Noam Chomsky, “Zellig Harris: From American Linguistics to Socialist Zionism” (MIT Press, 2011)
Zellig Harris’s name is famous in linguistics primarily for his early work on transformational grammar and his influence on his most famous student, Noam Chomsky. However, much of his linguistic work has since fallen into comparative obscurity. Moreover, his political research and activism – about which he was especially guarded... Read More
Julie Sedivy and Greg Carlson, “Sold on Language: How Advertisers Talk to You and What This Says About You” (Wiley, 2011)
We’ve never been in a more crowded marketplace, with more corporations shouting for our attention and custom. Yet this choice is an illusion, as detailed in Sold on Language: How Advertisers Talk to You and What This Says About You (Wiley, 2011). Using a battery of techniques, advertisers push us... Read More
Theo van Leeuwen, “The Language of Colour: An Introduction” (Routledge, 2011)
Theo van Leeuwen comes to the academic discipline of social semiotics – the study of how meanings are conveyed – from his previous career as a film and TV producer. His interest in the makings of visual communication is hardly surprising. More surprising was his realisation that, after 10 years... Read More
Jonathan Green, “Green’s Dictionary of Slang” (Hodder Education, 2010)
Over the last thirty years, Jonathon Green has established himself as a major figure in lexicography, specialising in English slang. During this time he has accumulated a database of over half a million citations for more than 100,000 words and phrases, and these are the basis for the vast, authoritative... Read More
Keith Gilyard, “True to the Language Game: African American Discourse, Cultural Politics, and Pedagogy” (Routledge, 2011)
In the preface to this book, Keith Gilyard describes his career as 30 years of roaming the areas of rhetoric, composition, sociolinguistics, creative writing, applied linguistics, education theory, literary study, history, and African American studies. That gives some impression of the range of topics covered in this compilation of selected... Read More
Debra Aarons, “Jokes and the Linguistic Mind” (Routledge, 2011)
I favour any book that applies the logic of Wittgenstein to quotes from the Goon Show. (Often in linguistics the reverse is true.) So I was delighted to have the opportunity to talk to Debra Aarons (University of New South Wales) about her book Jokes and the Linguistic Mind (Routledge,... Read More