Brevity

2014.09.05 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Laurence Goldstein (ed.), Brevity, Oxford University Press, 2013, 353pp., $135.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780199664986. Reviewed by
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2014.09.05 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Laurence Goldstein (ed.), Brevity, Oxford University Press, 2013, 353pp., $135.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780199664986. Reviewed by Catherine Wearing, Wellesley College Each of us is exceedingly good at communicating a great deal more than we put into words. Brevity in this sense of the term -- as meaning something like economy or efficiency of expression -- is a central feature of how humans communicate. Indeed, one of Grice's sub-maxims of Manner is 'Be brief '. It is hard to imagine how effective communication could occur if we always made explicit everything we sought to get across. And so we can ask, under what conditions do we achieve brevity in communication, and what is the significance of this widespread and diverse phenomenon? The essays in this collection take up these questions. Many of the papers focus on one or another of the specific mechanisms that facilitate brevity... Read More

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