George Lakoff, is a cognitive linguist and author of Don’t Think of an Elephant; Know Your Values and Frame the Debate.
This excerpt from the book offers concise advice to progressives about how to win debates in the public realm. In it, Lakoff explains the notion of “framing”, and points out that even when you negate a frame you reinforce it by implicitly accepting the worldview behind it.
One example is the typical debate about abortion. The conservative frame is “pro-life”, not “anti-abortion”. Arguably, the latter is more descriptive, but the former is far more evocative, and the liberal reply of “pro-choice” is not nearly as attractive—linguistically that is.
Read up and get ready progressives! We’ve got a Presidential election year battle ahead and we need to be prepared!