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Should “academic writing” be made more readable to the common slob?

March 17, 2009
Image by noodlepie via Flickr

Since when do we expect that academic writing must be available to the “common” reader?  In case anyone hasn’t noticed, most newspapers shot for the 8th grade reading level, but that doesn’t mean that academics should follow suit.  Why would academics need to change their jargon in English any more than we would expect a microbiologist to not use jargon when publishing in Science? Seems to me that too many English people are stepping on their own feet, and they are definitely falling prey to false advertising about making something “readable” to the common slob.

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