Description - Doing Our Own Thing by John H. McWhorter
Once languages become written, they change. Only in writing does language develop the artf ulness and richness that we associate with a Shakespeare, a Proust or a Whitman. Yet over the last forty years, the English-language has effectively gone into reverse - taking our lead from America and the legacy of the 1960s, our culture increasingly privileges the oral over the written, spurning the art of elaborated, 'written'-style language in favour of returning to the state of a spoken culture. Parallel developments have occurred in music. In this controversial and thought-provoking book, Jon McWhorter argues that the 1960's rejection of cultural traits associated with the Establishment, as well as a democratic celebration of what anyone can do over what requires training or talent, has led to our culture being increasingly impoverished, both intellectually and artistically, a culture that hates itself.
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Author Biography - John H. McWhorter
John McWhorter is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and an associate Professor of Linguistics at UC Berkeley. He is the author of The Power of Babel- A Natural History of Language, as well as a book about black English, The Word on the Street.