Steven Pinker’s latest book, The Sense of Style, may be a bit of a departure for the author but I’m still excited to read it. (In fact I’m already on page 57.) The subtitle offers further description: The Thinking Person’s Guide to Writing in the 21st Century. Pinker is a wonderful writer himself. As he states in his introduction, the book isn’t a reference book or a style guide. Instead it highlights what makes good writing and why it is still so important to be able to communicate clearly, with a bit of style and personality. Here is a partial book description from Barnes and Noble.
“Why is so much writing so bad, and how can we make it better? Is the English language being corrupted by texting and social media? Do the kids today even care about good writing? Why should any of us care?
“In The Sense of Style, the bestselling linguist and cognitive scientist Steven Pinker answers these questions and more. Rethinking the usage guide for the twenty-first century, Pinker doesnâ€™t carp about the decline of language or recycle pet peeves from the rulebooks of a century ago. Instead, he applies insights from the sciences of language and mind to the challenge of crafting clear, coherent, and stylish prose.”