Friday, September 11, 2009

Dummies Update

As mentioned here and here, I find the Dummies Books - and their co-morons, the Idiots Books - to be an unnecessary insult on the reading public. I'm sure it started out as irony ("Boy, I am such an idiot that I will go out and educate myself, as idiots often do") but it adds a demeaning layer of condensation to our discourse. And surely it affects business: like Cliff's Notes, the books are brightly colored, instantly recognizable, and they broadcast the message: "please mock me for trying to learn something!"

My solution - and if I ever own a printing press, this is what I'll do - is to have the same type of books and call them either "Primers" or "Handbooks" and have nice covers. Ah well, they're laughing all the way to the First Dummies Bank while I'm still in grad school.

That ranted, here's the latest entry for my ire: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Verbal Self-Defense" My guess? The first chapter is to apologize for the book title.

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