Saturday, March 05, 2005

Bad Academic Writing: Can Blogging Help?

I saw Christina Hoff Sommers on C-Span this morning. She mentioned that Judith Butler had won a Bad Writing contest. I put the Google bot on her case and found this well written piece from the Weekly Standard.

Since I tend to overwrite, I thought that blogging might improve my style, moving it from the prolix to the pithy. I believe it has helped some. But blogging is to formal writing a bit like blitz is to slow chess. The blitz player develops quick sight of the board and learns how to maintain his cool in time pressure; but the overall assessment has to be negative: speed chess hurts one's slow game. (But my slow game is so bad, the hurt is inconsequential.) Does blogosophisizing hurt one's formal philosophizing? The jury is still out on this one as far as I'm concerned.

Maybe what Judith Butler needs is her very own blog, ButlerBlog, or perhaps ButlerBull. For all I know, she already has one.