GENDER AND DISCOURSE

In attempt to defend and expand upon her theories of miscommunication between men and women, sociolinguist Tannen provides the scholarly underpinnings of her 1990 bestseller, You Just Don't Understand. The material included in these five previously published and ponderous essays differs from Tannen's earlier book primarily in that it is addressed to a jury of her academic peers. Jargon abounds throughout, from terms like ``kinesic/proxemic analogue'' to ``the polysemy of power and solidarity.'' However, the central ideas are quite familiar: Pervasive miscommunication between men and women is due, in large part, to a complex set of ``cross- cultural'' and stylistic differences; though men do tend to dominate women in society, their domination of women in conversation is not necessarily born of an intent to dominate; linguistic strategies (such as interruption) can mean different things in different instances; and understanding style differences allows for adjustments without casting blame on either gender. Also repeated are many of the studies and examples Tannen cites elsewhere (Marianne and Johan's conversational strategies in Ingmar Bergman's Scenes From a Marriage; videotaped dialogues between eight pairs of same-sex friends). Tannen is at her most interesting (and original) in the introduction, in which she elaborately defends her own ``culture difference theory and research.'' Responding primarily to her scholarly critics who see gender and language according to models of power and dominance, rather than cultural differences, she insists that one does not preclude the other. Though she does not convince so much as pique interest in the debates raging in her field, this is one of the book's more compelling sections. This may offer intrepid Tannen fans or academicians worthy bits of information and insight, but general readers are likely to find little reward in this dense tome.

Pub Date: June 1, 1994

ISBN: 0-19-508975-8

Page Count: 208

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1994

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. AND THE MARCH ON WASHINGTON

This early reader is an excellent introduction to the March on Washington in 1963 and the important role in the march played by Martin Luther King Jr. Ruffin gives the book a good, dramatic start: “August 28, 1963. It is a hot summer day in Washington, D.C. More than 250,00 people are pouring into the city.” They have come to protest the treatment of African-Americans here in the US. With stirring original artwork mixed with photographs of the events (and the segregationist policies in the South, such as separate drinking fountains and entrances to public buildings), Ruffin writes of how an end to slavery didn’t mark true equality and that these rights had to be fought for—through marches and sit-ins and words, particularly those of Dr. King, and particularly on that fateful day in Washington. Within a year the Civil Rights Act of 1964 had been passed: “It does not change everything. But it is a beginning.” Lots of visual cues will help new readers through the fairly simple text, but it is the power of the story that will keep them turning the pages. (Easy reader. 6-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-448-42421-5

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2000

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