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Title: Evolution or Corruption? The Imposition of Political Language in the West Today
Authors: Deist, Jeff
Keywords: LanguageEvolutionCorruptionWokeSocial Justice
Issue Date: 2022
Publisher: EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Source: Jeff Deist, "Evolution or Corruption? The Imposition of Political Language in the West Today" in: "Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics (2022) XXIV/2", EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste, Trieste, 2022, pp. 55-74
Journal: Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics 
Language is an institution in society, not only a cognitive tool for communication. Like all institutions, it evolves organically over time but is also subject to corruption and capture by political agendas. Natural linguistic evolution might be compared to a “marketplace” operating like a laissez-faire economic system, while corrupted or imposed changes to language might be compared to state intervention in this marketplace. This paper briefly examines the question of linguistic evolution vs. corruption in the context of social sciences, particularly politics and economics. Starting with Orwell’s concept of “meaningless words,” it considers recent political events in the US and UK; the linguistic demands of social justice movements; the rise in “woke” messaging from corporations and central bankers; and related phenomena. It suggests many of the linguistic changes rapidly occurring across the English-speaking world are not organic but instead imposed by elites with political agendas Changes in language ultimately affect not only how we communicate, but also how we think, feel, and act. Economists, political scientists, philosophers, and other social scientists should take greater interest in the role language plays in their disciplines. The language they use informs and may even change the substantive content of those disciplines, so precision and consistency are critical.
Type: Article
ISSN: 1825-5167
DOI: 10.13137/1825-5167/34453
Rights: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 Internazionale
Appears in Collections:Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics (2022) XXIV/2

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