Political Language - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780122306624, 9781483269801

Political Language

1st Edition

Words That Succeed and Policies That Fail

Authors: Murray Edelman
eBook ISBN: 9781483269801
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 28th October 1977
Page Count: 188
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Political Language: Words That Succeed and Policies That Fail deals with chronic inequalities of a smaller portion of the population getting more. The book discusses the persistence of poverty and greater inequalities in a democratic society such as the United States. The text reviews the chronic problems and the various beliefs found in American society, and also notes the general acceptance of the large differences in the quality of life of the people, which includes political power and autonomy. The book then defines perception of the political spectator and explains the linguistic generation of assumptions (taking for granted), linguistic reconstruction of facts (cover-ups), and the linguistic segmentation of politics (distinct from ordinary world). The text then emphasizes the language of inquiry, of authority, of participation, and of resistance as leading to free inquiry and experimentation or political loyalty. The selection can prove beneficial for political students, economists, educators, sociologists, and members of ministerial affairs related to population and economics.

Table of Contents




1 Chronic Problems, Banal Language, and Contradictory Beliefs

The Acceptance of Inequality

Banality and Anxiety

Social Adjustment through Contradictory Beliefs

Symbolic Evocation and Political Reality

Multiple Realities as Threats

The Focus on Official Language

Rhetorical Evocations

The Authority, Language, and Ideology of the Helping Professions

2 Categorization, Perception, and Politics

The Linguistic Structuring of Social Problems

The Evocation of Mythical Populations as Reference Groups

The Categorization of Enemies

The Linguistic Generation of Assumptions

The Linguistic Reconstruction of Facts

The Linguistic Segmentation of the Political World

Created Worlds

3 National Crises and "Public Opinion" as Political Symbols

The Political Uses of National Crises

The Labeling of Crises

Public Opinion

4 The Political Language of the Helping Professions

Therapy and Power

The Formal Component in Professional Language

Professional Imperialism

"Helping" as a Political Symbol

5 The Language of Bureaucracy

The Political Setting of Bureaucracy

Administrative Ineffectiveness: Clear and Problematic

The Constriction of Administrative Staff

Jurisdiction as a Déterrant to Effectiveness

The Multiple Veto and Organizational Conservatism


Selective Feedback

Bureaucratic Language as Incantation


6 The Language of Inquiry and the Language of Authority

Formal Language

Public Language

The Empirical Combination of Formal and Public Languages

Roles as Distinct from Human Beings

Language Forms as Symbols

7 The Language of Participation and the Language of Resistance

Public and Private Issues

Politicization as Co-optation

Influence versus Formality

The Uses of Disorder

The Structuring of Perception through Politicization

Intense Politicization

Clarification and Blurring of Adversary Relations


8 Political Constraint through Symbolic Reassurance

The Generation of Belief and of Skepticism

The Constriction of Perception

The Political Viability of Unsuccessful Policies

The Stultification of the Individual



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© Academic Press 1977
Academic Press
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About the Author

Murray Edelman

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