Linguist Geoff Numberg: the Language of Campaign 2016
Show #139 | Guest: Geoffrey Nunberg is an adjunct full professor at the School of Information at the University of California at Berkeley. His many books include the landmark Going Nucular, named one of the ten best nonfiction books of 2004 by Amazon.com and made best-of-the-year lists by the San Jose Mercury News, the Boston Globe, the Hartford Courant, and the Chicago Tribune. He’s a recipient of the Linguistic Society of America’s Language and the Public Interest Award. He also worked on the development of linguistic technologies for Xerox. | Show Summary: Donald Trump says Hillary Clinton is “wacky”. Clinton claims Trump is “dangerously incoherent.” In the political world, nearly every word is carefully honed to convey specific messages to a deliberately targeted audience. From the choice of vernacular to the number of syllables, the chosen language speaks volumes about America’s culture and subcultures – and the people who want their vote. Linguist Geoff Nunberg joins Angie to unravel what this election’s crop of words and phrases tells us about what we’re hearing and what’s behind it. And they’ll look at the evolution of political language from elections past.
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