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Although Levitt and Dubner write about highly charged topics, they write in a manner...

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blabla121 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 2) eNoter

Posted July 24, 2013 at 2:10 AM via web

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Although Levitt and Dubner write about highly charged topics, they write in a manner that does not offend most readers. How do they use language and style to achieve this balance?

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scarletpimpernel | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted August 4, 2013 at 10:49 PM (Answer #1)

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Freakonomics does indeed discuss thought-provoking and controversial topics, but because of the authors' use of a tongue-in-cheek tone and self-depracating humor, readers are able to digest the work without letting their bias overrule logic. Levitt and Dubner's tone is especially important in sections where they discuss the KKK, the intentional placement of abortion clinics in minority neighborhoods, and the link between names and income. While the statistics are often unpleasant and disturbing, such as those related to the KKK's use of a fear-mongering reputation to control so many people and Margaret Sanger's promotion of abortion to control minority populations, the authors deftly present those facts and then demonstrate the ironic link between the ugly statistics and human nature. Because Levitt and Dubner choose to remain matter-of-fact throughout the book and do not take themselves too seriously, they successfully convince their readers to examine their own motives for personal choices and philosophical viewpoints.


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