13  The style for the purpose

Every writer, by the way he or she]uses the language, reveals something of his spirit, his habits, his capacities, his bias. (E. B. White, Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style, Chapter 5)

We have identified several qualities that make up a writer’s style in previous chapters: notably rhythm, pace and euphony. In this chapter we ask what sort of style is effective in description, narration, exposition and argument, by studying good examples. These may also reveal the less definable quality that will make the whole greater than the sum of the parts, and some of the writer’s originality.


Laurie Lee in Spain (page 208) reveals a poet’s eye. Such descriptions, plunging the reader into the whole ...

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