Critical vocabulary

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A critical vocabulary is a formal terminology related to one or more branches of critical theory.[citation needed] Although it may be considered a type of jargon, it is predominantly used by academics[who?] and is not slang.[citation needed] The word "critical", as used in the term critical vocabulary, takes on two meanings: "of essential importance" and "of or pertaining to critics or criticism."[citation needed] Thus, the vocabulary is of essential importance to the critical theory that employs it and is used by that critical theory in order to produce criticism.[citation needed]


Unlike the term jargon, the term critical vocabulary is seldom used as a collective noun.[citation needed] It is typically preceded by the definite or indefinite article.[citation needed] When speaking about more than one critical theory, it is used in the plural (i.e. "the critical vocabularies of postmodern studies").[citation needed]


Several people have criticized critical vocabularies as tools of alienation or obfuscation.[1][2][not in citation given] Also there have been assertions that the relatively recent proliferation of critical vocabularies has resulted in redundancy of both terms and ideas.[3][not in citation given] See the Pitfalls section under jargon.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-08-07. Retrieved 2008-05-12.[not in citation given]
  2. ^ "Beware of your vocabulary: Web Development Blog: Creative Services: Marketing and Communications: Case Western Reserve University". 2006-03-23. Retrieved 2013-04-04.
  3. ^ Evans, William W.; Newman, Edwin; Mueller, Robert K. (1977). "Language and the lay linguist". American Speech. 52 (1/2): 134–145. doi:10.2307/454728. JSTOR 454728.

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