Talking a Blue Streak

Friday, September 07, 2012

John McWhorter, linguist, New Republic contributing editor and the author of What Language Is (And What It Isn’t and What It Could Be) talks about the Democrats' rhetorical choices in their conventions speeches.



John McWhorter

Comments [10]

@chriss from Montclair

Sure, why not. Most of us bought a west Texas drawl from a man who moved there from Connecticut when he was ten years old. Maybe because he himself thought he was just 'talking'.

Sep. 07 2012 02:22 PM
The Truth from Becky

gw bush worst president EVER!

Sep. 07 2012 11:33 AM
The Truth from Becky

romney ryan change? what is their platform again? LOL

Sep. 07 2012 11:31 AM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

It's Time For A Change.

Romney and Ryan in 2012.

Obama along side Jimmy Carter (Worst President EVER) working for "Habitat for Humanity".

Sep. 07 2012 11:23 AM
The Truth from Becky

A great speech - FORWARD - OBAMA - BIDEN - 2012!

Sep. 07 2012 11:01 AM

Oh, my, I am so tired of the faux urbanity, faux ennui, faux faux. So McWhorter has heard it all; he's also said all of it! What a faux intetellectual!

Sep. 07 2012 11:00 AM
Stephan from Queens NY

Best part of the speech for me by president Obama…
"(I'm no longer just a candidate. I'm the President. I know what it means to send young Americans into battle, for I have held in my arms the mothers and fathers of those who didn't return. I've shared the pain of families who've lost their homes, and the frustration of workers who've lost their jobs. If the critics are right that I've made all my decisions based on polls, then I must not be very good at reading them. And while I'm proud of what we've achieved together, I'm far more mindful of my own failings, knowing exactly what Lincoln meant when he said, "I have been driven to my knees many times by the overwhelming conviction that I had no place else to go.")"

Sep. 07 2012 10:59 AM
carolita from nyc

Please, you guys. All these critics would find something wrong in the Gettysberg Address! Obama gave a good speech. A very good speech. People were crying, for goodness sakes.

Sep. 07 2012 10:58 AM
Chriss from Montclair

Obama's faux "Preacher" (Southern) cadence: dropping the "g's," adding "ah" to the end of everything as in:


wears thin, because it's fake.

At this point, it's like, "Well, of course he gave a great speech..." But...

Sep. 07 2012 10:57 AM
Jessie Henshaw from Way Uptown

If all politics is a posturing of "tropes", what seems to be the default view of the linguist, why bother?

Sep. 07 2012 10:55 AM

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