Synopses & Reviews
Technoscientific developments often have far-reaching consequences, both negative and positive, for the public. Yet, because science has the authority to decide which judgments about scientific issues are sound, public concerns are often dismissed because they are not part of the technoscientific paradigm they question. This book addresses the role of science popularization in that paradox; it explains how science writing works and argues that it can do better at promoting public discussions about science-related issues. To support these arguments, it situates science popularization in its historical and cultural context; provides a conceptual framework for analyzing popular science texts; and examines the rhetorical effects of common strategies used in popular science writing. Twenty-six years after Dorothy Nelkin's groundbreaking book, Selling Science: How the Press Covers Science and Technology, popular science writing is still not meeting its potential as a public interest genre; Communicating Popular Science explores how it can move closer to doing so.
Communicating Popular Science addresses the role of science popularization and explains how science writing works can do better at promoting public discussions about science-related issues.
About the Author
Sarah Tinker Perrault is Assistant Professor in the University Writing Program at the University of California, Davis, USA. In addition to rhetoric of science, her research interests include writing pedagogy and rhetorical theory. Her work has appeared in Composition Studies, the Journal of General Education and Bird Watcher's Digest.
Table of Contents
PART I: FOUNDATIONS
1. Popular Science Writing: Problems and Potential
2. Theoretical and Analytical Framework
3. A Brief History of Science Popularization
4. Practitioner Perspectives on their Craft
PART II: APPLICATIONS
5. Boundary Work: Presenting Science in Context
6. Expertise: Broadening the Scope of Participation
7. Ethos: Establishing Relationships with Readers
8. Rhetorical Orientation: Inviting Reader Engagement
9. Technocracy and Democracy: Talking about Risk
PART III: FINAL WORDS
10. Conclusion: Toward a New Social Contract