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The Language of Science

Book Description

The communication of scientific principles is becoming increasingly important in a world that relies on technology. Exploring the use of scientific language in the news and examining how important scientific ideas are reported and communicated, this title in the Intertext series takes a look at the use and misuse of scientific language and how it shapes our lives.

The Language of Science:

  • explores the goals of, and problems with, scientific language and terminology
  • demonstrates the power and misuse of scientific discourse in the media
  • examines the special qualities of scientific communication
  • explores how science and popular culture interact
  • is illustrated with a wide range of examples from the MMR vaccine to AIDS and the biological weapons debate, and includes a glossary as well as ideas for further reading.

This practical book is ideal for post-16 to undergraduate students in English Language, Linguistics, Journalism, Communications Studies or Science Communication.

Table of Contents

  1. Front Cover
  2. The Language of Science
  3. The Intertext series
  4. Title Page
  5. Copyright
  6. Contents
  7. Itroduction
    1. What is science?
    2. Language and science 2
    3. Analysing scientific language
  8. Unit one: Language
    1. Scientific vs poetic language
    2. Scientific language should be free of bias and emotion
    3. Scientific language and the AIDS epidemic
    4. Problems with scientific terminology
    5. Summary
    6. Further reading
    7. Source
  9. Unit two: Metaphor in science
    1. Metaphors in science
    2. Metaphors as models
    3. Metaphors as theories
    4. Metaphors as theories about atomic structure
    5. Metaphors used to teach science
    6. The language of genetics
    7. Summary
    8. Further reading
    9. Sources
  10. Unit three: The grammar of science
    1. The theory of grammatical metaphor
    2. Grammatical metaphor and scientific theory
    3. Grammatical metaphor and scientific terminology
    4. Grammatical metaphor and scientific arguments
    5. What grammatical transformations reveal about scientific experience
    6. Grammatical metaphor and academic writing
    7. Summary
    8. Further reading
    9. Source
  11. Unit four: Discourse and facts
    1. The experimental report in science
    2. Types of statements and the evolution of scientific ‘facts’
    3. Tracing the linguistic evolution of facts
    4. The classification of statement types
    5. Tracing consensus about AIDS
    6. Summary
    7. Further reading
    8. Sources
  12. Unit five: Understanding the rhetorical in science
    1. Journals
    2. Audience
    3. The nature of the subject matter and the authors’ purpose
    4. Rhetoric as persuasive art
    5. Analysing scientific arguments
    6. Rhetoric and AIDS
    7. Rhetoric and scientific networks
    8. Summary
    9. Further reading
  13. Unit six: Science and culture: the interaction of discourses
    1. Discursive hegemonies
    2. Societal discourses may hold sway over science
    3. Summary
  14. Unit seven: Science and society
    1. Translators of science and their motives
    2. Summary
    3. Further reading
    4. Sources
  15. Index of terms