Featured Post

Anxious gatekeeping

Analogous to nervous cluelessness is something we might call “anxious gatekeeping.”   This is desire to police the borders of poetry, or of...

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Of Course

One of my stylistic tics is of course. This, for me, implies a certain intellectual attitude of: "Yes, sure I already know that, but let me tell you something else that is not self-evident." It is a metadiscursive sign of a certain kind of argument that I am favoring. There is nothing wrong, of course, with this style of arguing, but it is helpful to be aware of it, that that is what I am doing.

You can also smuggle in a question-begging assumption with an of course or needless to say.

1 comment:

Vance Maverick said...

"Of course" isn't terrible, but it's a bit un-classical -- it suggests the writer is slightly embarrassed to be saying something, because it's well known. But you shouldn't be, any more than Mozart was embarrassed to write a couple bars of boilerplate figuration and cadence when that's what was called for.