Bad writing can't be blamed on the Internet, or on 'the kids today'. Good writing has always been hard: a performance requiring pretense, empathy, and a drive for coherence. In The Sense of Style, cognitive scientist and linguist Steven Pinker uses the latest scientific insights to bring us a style and usage guide for the 21st century. What do skilful writers know about the link between syntax and ideas? How can we overcome the Curse of Knowledge, the difficulty in imagining what it's like not to know something we do? And can we distinguish the myths and superstitions from rules that enhance clarity and grace? As Pinker shows, everyone can improve their mastery of writing and their appreciation of the art (yes, 'their').
An award-winning cognitive scientist and public intellectual, Steven Pinker is also Chair of the Usage Panel of the American Heritage Dictionary and the lauded author of bestsellers such as The Language Instinct, Words and Rules, The Better Angels of Our Nature and The Stuff of Thought: Language as a Window into Human Nature. He is Johnstone Family Professor in the Department of Psychology at Harvard University and lives in Boston & Truro, Massachusetts.