Cloth $45.00 ISBN: 9780226041308 Published December 2007
Paper $12.00 ISBN: 9780226041322 Published December 2007
E-book $7.00 to $12.00 About E-books ISBN: 9780226041377 Published November 2008

Writing for Social Scientists

How to Start and Finish Your Thesis, Book, or Article: Second Edition

Howard S. Becker

Howard S. Becker

With a contribution by Pamela Richards
208 pages | 5-1/2 x 8-1/2 | © 2007
Cloth $45.00 ISBN: 9780226041308 Published December 2007
Paper $12.00 ISBN: 9780226041322 Published December 2007
E-book $7.00 to $12.00 About E-books ISBN: 9780226041377 Published November 2008
Students and researchers all write under pressure, and those pressures—most lamentably, the desire to impress your audience rather than to communicate with them—often lead to pretentious prose, academic posturing, and, not infrequently, writer’s block.

Sociologist Howard S. Becker has written the classic book on how to conquer these pressures and simply write. First published nearly twenty years ago, Writing for Social Scientists has become a lifesaver for writers in all fields, from beginning students to published authors. Becker’s message is clear: in order to learn how to write, take a deep breath and then begin writing. Revise. Repeat.

It is not always an easy process, as Becker wryly relates. Decades of teaching, researching, and writing have given him plenty of material, and Becker neatly exposes the foibles of academia and its “publish or perish” atmosphere. Wordiness, the passive voice, inserting a “the way in which” when a simple “how” will do—all these mechanisms are a part of the social structure of academic writing. By shrugging off such impediments—or at the very least, putting them aside for a few hours—we can reform our work habits and start writing lucidly without worrying about grades, peer approval, or the “literature.”

In this new edition, Becker takes account of major changes in the computer tools available to writers today, and also substantially expands his analysis of how academic institutions create problems for them. As competition in academia grows increasingly heated, Writing for Social Scientists will provide solace to a new generation of frazzled, would-be writers.
Contents
Preface to the Second Edition  
1986 Preface   
Freshman English for Graduate Students       
Persona and Authority         
One Right Way        
Editing by Ear          
Learning to Write as a Professional  
Risk, by Pamela Richards    
Getting It out the Door         
Terrorized by the Literature  
Writing with Computers       
A Final Word        
References      
Index   
For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
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