This book contains 25 essays about English words, and how they are
defined, valued, and discussed. The book is divided into four sections.
The first section, "Language Lore," examines some of the myths and
misconceptions that affect attitudes toward language--and towards
English in particular. The second section, "Language Usage," examines
some specific questions of meaning and usage. Section 3, "Language
Trends," examines some controversial trends in English vocabulary, and
some developments too new to have received comment before. The fourth
section, "Language Politics," treats several aspects of linguistic
politics, from special attempts to deal with the ethnic, religious, or
sex-specific elements of vocabulary to the broader issues of language
both as a reflection of the public consciousness and the U.S.
Constitution and as a refuge for the most private forms of expression.