Learn to Hear What's Left Unsaid
Public discourse? More like public discord. The battle cries of our culture wars are rife with “loaded language”—be it bias, slant, or spin. But listen closely, or you’ll miss what Ali Almossawi finds more frightening still: words that erase accountability, history, even identity through what they leave unsaid.
Speaking as wise old Mr. Rabbit, Almossawi leads us through a dark forest of rhetoric—aided by Orwell, Baldwin, and a squee-worthy cast of wide-eyed woodland creatures. Here, passive voice can pardon wrongdoers, statistics may be a smokescreen, gaslighting entraps the downtrodden, and irrelevant adjectives cement stereotypes. Emperor Squirrel isn’t naked; he has a clothes-free sartorial style. Mouse’s roof becomes flattened (Elephant’s foot just happens to be there at the time). And when keen-eyed Owl claims a foreign shore, he seems to be overlooking someone . . .
Fans of Almossawi’s An Illustrated Book of Bad Arguments couldn’t ask for a better primer on the less logical ways that words can trick us. It takes a long pair of ears to hear what’s left unsaid—but when you’re a rabbit in a badger world, listening makes all the difference.
About the Author
Ali Almossawi is an alumnus of MIT's engineering systems division and Carnegie Mellon's school of computer science. His books include An Illustrated Book of Bad Arguments, An Illustrated Book of Loaded Language, and Bad Choices. His writing has appeared in publications such as Wired. He works and lives in San Francisco.
About the Illustrator
Alejandro Giraldo holds a degree in graphic design from UPB Medellín and a master's in art direction from ELISAVA (the Barcelona School of Design and Engineering). He runs the clothing company Velmost and works as a freelance illustrator. He lives in Medellín, Colombia.
Hardcover Paper over boards | 96 pages