Wednesday, August 24, 2016

George Lakoff — Understanding Trump’s Use of Language

Note: This is a follow-up to my previous piece, ‘Understanding Trump’. Please read that piece first.…
Some in the media (Washington Post, Salon, Slate, Think Progress, etc.) have called Trump’s speeches “word salad.” Some commentators have even attributed his language use to “early Alzheimer’s,” citing “erratic behavior” and “little regards for social conventions.” I don’t believe it.

I have been repeatedly asked in media interviews about such use of language by Trump. So far as I can tell, he is simply using effective discourse mechanisms to communicate what his wants to communicate to his audience. I have found that he is very careful and very strategic in his use of language. The only way I know to show this is to function as a linguist and cognitive scientist and go through details.
Complementary to Scot Adams' analysis of Trump based on persuasion.

George Lakoff's Blog
Understanding Trump’s Use of Language
George Lakoff | Richard and Rhoda Goldman Distinguished Professor of Cognitive Science and Linguistics at the University of California at Berkeley


Ryan Harris said...
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Kaivey said...

Good article. Trump likes go get his way and has learned the tricks of doing so over the course of his life. He is using his business skills in his presidential campaign to win over people, like he has done in his business deals. Perhaps he will do a good deal with Putin too.

I'm not sure about the authoritarian, paternal side of things, that's very conservative.