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The Four Types of Doublespeak

In William Lutz’s essay, “Doublespeak”, he argues that in today’s society people frequently exploit words that are misleading in their daily conversations. This is the language he refers to as Doublespeak. Even though people use this language with good intentions, Lutz explains that it can oftentimes deceive the audience from the speaker’s true objective. According to Lutz, Doublespeak has evolved into a language that can easily be identified almost anywhere. The most common place we can find Doublespeak is through our daily oral conversations followed by the media, such as television and the newspaper. It can also be found in non-fiction books. Lutz illustrates in his essay the four styles of Doublespeak. The first type of Doublespeak is called euphemism. People use euphemism to soften a statement so that their message does not sound harsh and unrelenting. The most common place to find euphemism is when people send their condolences. However, euphemism becomes Doublespeak when it obfuscates people, for example when someone substitutes the word “genocide” with “ethnic cleansing”. The second style of Doublespeak is known as jargon. Jargons are lingoes used by members who belong to a special group (i.e. doctors) or culture. These lingoes can only be understood by members of that special group or culture. Lutz explains that when jargon is purposely used to deceive audiences then that usage becomes doublespeak. An example would be with a group of Chinese students. If they were conversing in Chinese amongst themselves, that is completely appropriate. If they speak in their foreign tongue with an American present, then the jargon would be pretentious and inappropriate. A third type of doublespeak is gobbledygook or it could also be called bureaucratese. Gobbledygook refers to the use of a sheer volume of words, or complicated language that makes it sound like something is being said when nothing is really being s...

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The Four Types of Doublespeak. (1969, December 31). In DirectEssays.com. Retrieved 05:24, August 23, 2014, from http://www.megaessays.com/viewpaper/23495.html