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As citizens of capitalist, free-market societies, we tend tocelebrate choice and competition. However, in the 21stcentury, as we have gained more and more choices, we have alsobecome greater targets for persuasive messages from advertisers whowant to make those choices for us.

In Sold on Language, noted language scientists JulieSedivy and Greg Carlson examine how rampant competition shapes theways in which commercial and political advertisers speak to us. Inan environment saturated with information, advertising messagesattempt to compress as much persuasive power into as small alinguistic space as possible. These messages, the authors reveal,might take the form of a brand name whose sound evokes a certainimpression, a turn of phrase that gently applies peer pressure, ora subtle accent that zeroes in on a target audience. As more andmore techniques of persuasion are aimed squarely at the corner ofour mind which automatically takes in information without consciousthought or deliberation, does 'endless choice' actually mean theend of true choice?

Sold on Language offers thought-provoking insights intothe choices we make as consumers and citizens – and thechoices that are increasingly being made for us.

Click here for more discussion and debate on the authors’blog:

[Wiley disclaims all responsibility and liability for thecontent of any third-party websites that can be linked to from thiswebsite. Users assume sole responsibility for accessing third-partywebsites and the use of any content appearing on suchwebsites.  Any views expressed in such websites are the viewsof the authors of the content appearing on those websites and notthe views of Wiley or its affiliates, nor do they in any wayrepresent an endorsement by Wiley or its affiliates.]

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