Enough Said by Mark Thompson
What's Gone Wrong with the Language of Politics?

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Thompson is a sharp and entertaining analyst of political language itself, drawing on terms from classical rhetoric. (“Death panel”, he notes, is an enthymeme: an incomplete argument where listeners are invited to fill in the gaps.) He offers sardonic close readings of speeches by Thatcher and Reagan, Blair and Trump.
-Guardian

Synopsis

There’s a crisis of trust in politics across the western world. Public anger is rising and faith in conventional political leaders and parties is falling. Anti-politics, and the anti-politicians, have arrived. In Enough Said, President and CEO of The New York Times Company Mark Thompson argues that one of most of significant causes of the crisis is the way our public language has changed.

Enough Said tells the story of how we got from the language of FDR and Churchill to that of Donald Trump. It forensically examines the public language we’ve been left with: compressed, immediate, sometimes brilliantly impactful, but robbed of most of its explanatory power. It studies the rhetoric of western leaders from Reagan and Thatcher to Burlesconi, Blair, and today’s political elites on both sides of the Atlantic. And it charts how a changing public language has interacted with real world events – Iraq, the financial crash, the UK's surprising Brexit from the EU, immigration – and led to a mutual breakdown of trust between politicians and journalists, to leave ordinary citizens suspicious, bitter, and increasingly unwilling to believe anybody.

Drawing from classical as well as contemporary examples and ranging across politics, business, science, technology, and the arts, Enough Said is a smart and shrewd look at the erosion of language by an author uniquely placed to measure its consequences.

 

About Mark Thompson

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Mark Thompson holds a PhD in Social Sciences from Cambridge. The author of Forging War and A Paper House, he lives in Oxford, England.
 
Published September 6, 2016 by St. Martin's Press. 352 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference, Law & Philosophy. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Enough Said
All: 3 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 0

NY Times

Good
Reviewed by JAMES FALLOWS on Sep 05 2016

I don’t think this book will change the continuing debates about “bias” and “objectivity,” the separation of the public into distinct fact universes...But it offers many instructive allusions, useful judgments and important refinements on these themes...

Read Full Review of Enough Said: What's Gone Wron... | See more reviews from NY Times

Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Steven Poole on Oct 26 2016

Thompson is a sharp and entertaining analyst of political language itself, drawing on terms from classical rhetoric. (“Death panel”, he notes, is an enthymeme: an incomplete argument where listeners are invited to fill in the gaps.) He offers sardonic close readings of speeches by Thatcher and Reagan, Blair and Trump.

Read Full Review of Enough Said: What's Gone Wron... | See more reviews from Guardian

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Andrew Rawnsley on Sep 04 2016

In this important book, Mark Thompson is quick to concede that ours is far from the first age of alarm about the way we conduct political debate and he is not the first to raise the spectre that it could lead to even scarier destinations than Donald Trump.

Read Full Review of Enough Said: What's Gone Wron... | See more reviews from Guardian

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