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On the Offensive

By Karen Stollznow

On the Offensive " This book sheds light on the derogatory phrases, insults, slurs, stereotypes, tropes and more that make up linguistic discrimination. Each chapter addresses a different area of prejudice: race and ethnicity; gender identity; sexuality; religion; health and disability; physical appearance; and age."



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Dissertation Information


Title: The Construction of Expert Knowledge in Popular Management Literature Add Dissertation
Author: Alon Lischinsky Update Dissertation
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: http://alon.lischinsky.net
Institution: Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Linguistic Sciences and Applied Linguistics
Completed in: 2008
Linguistic Subfield(s): Applied Linguistics; Discourse Analysis; Pragmatics;
Director(s): Teun van Dijk

Abstract: This thesis is a critically-oriented study of how knowledge and authority
are legitimated in the discursive structure of popular management books.
Some key textual and contextual properties of these texts are investigated
in a corpus of over a hundred texts, representing a selection of highly
influential works in this field according to emic criteria.

Five empirical studies assess different aspects of their structure, with a
special attention to their role in the construction of authorial and reader
personas: the nature of management book titles, that sets the pragmatic key
for the understanding of these texts; the use of metadiscourse to set and
answer genre expectations, shedding light on the reciprocal expectations of
authors and readers; exemplification patterns, showing how persuasive texts
can be deployed without developing general arguments; the use of narratives
of personal experience to establish authorial credibility; and the
strategic deployment of presuppositions to mobilize readers' affects and
convictions in highly-charged topics.

The purpose of these studies is to provide a discursively-based account of
the typical persuasive devices used by writers in popular management,
illuminating the epistemic characteristics of the discipline. The analyses
show the highly idiosyncratic character of popular management writing, that
cannot be assimilated either to academic criteria not to popularisation
genres. The positioning of writers regarding their texts, their themes and
their audience is understood as an expression of their position within the
field of management, where several interests and sets of practitioners
coincide. Its relation to the well-established ideological character of the
discipline is discussed, as is the value of textually-oriented discourse
analysis for the critique of such ideologies.