Language of Poverty

Grant Barrett gbarrett at AMERICANDIALECT.ORG
Mon Sep 20 02:40:51 UTC 1999

Interesting article regarding language and definitions of poverty used by bureaucrats, aid agencies and the poor themselves when discussing their conditions and solutions. It is not specifically dialect-related, but interesting in a Noam Chomsky thinking-is-language kind of way.

The precis:

Poverty as a blot on society has been eclipsed by other priorities, especially the need to determine a financially acceptable level of social welfare cover. The swings in public opinion between concern and indifference reflect an ongoing controversy about the nature of poverty. The issue is a political football. And the argument cannot be solved by a straightforward appeal to the "facts" because the statistics are open to interpretation by those who set out to define the characteristics of the poor.

Grant Barrett

World New York

More information about the Ads-l mailing list