Help me prune the academic wankery
May 28, 2011 5:48 PM Subscribe
What are unnecessarily formal "academic jargon" type words that I should seek and destroy in my papers?
posted by lollusc to Writing & Language (66 answers total) 119 users marked this as a favorite
I've started keeping a list of words that are unnecessarily formal/show-offy and that I overuse in my academic prose. I recently did a nearly-final stylistic revision of a paper just by systematically searching for these words and examining each sentence that contained them to see if it could be reworded. I was happy with the result.
My papers up until now have tended towards the very formal end of the prose spectrum, and in my discipline, that is not necessary. The papers I most enjoy reading are written much more conversationally.
I'm thinking there are probably other words like this that have got in under my radar. Can anyone give me similar examples I should be examining?
The words I already have in my list are hence, thus, notwithstanding, inasmuch, insofar and the humble yet. I'm also searching for all sentences containing a semi-colon, and for any longer than 50 words, so other non-word searches like that would be good suggestions too.