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Doublespeak (sometimes, double-speak), in its most basic definition, is language that disguises the nature of truth. It is a term used to describe deliberate acts of commercial propaganda and semantic distortion by political figures and the media in support of an agenda or program. Its use includes substitution or “spin” (e.g., “sweep and clear” as a softer version of “search and destroy,” or “freedom fighter” for “terrorist,” depending on allegiance), omission, homogenizing nouns as a means to diffuse accountability (e.g., “America” rather than “American soldiers”), and highly emotive assertions that are devoid of content (e.g., “Yes we can!”). In its simplest sense, doublespeak seeks to either intensify or disguise its subject in accordance with the speaker’s agenda. To limit the study of doublespeak simply to ...

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