Wednesday, August 11, 2010

truth and emotion in writing

Perching on the appearance of text that goes to the matter of any social service, commercial or charitable, a response of welling up of emotions cannot leave room for or otherwise cohabit with the specialized faculties of editing, which I know takes some work to get to a stage of development where deeper scales of effectiveness arise and invoke again the editing function, and this emotional response makes that impossible.

Effective prose differs from that which rouses emotions. The strength of a passage to point out truth is able to work well on any large audience, while one that rouses emotions takes many paths with no effect on understanding. Whether these many paths result in a net improvement in welfare is always hard to say.