A number of years ago, I read Steven Pinker’s book The Language Instinct and decided I wanted to major in linguistics. Unfortunately, I’d already finished college by then (majoring in American Studies, the last refuge of the indecisive). In fact, I’d gone to law school and was a practicing lawyer.
I’m still practicing law, and while I didn’t go back to college, I did start reading in areas of linguistics that interested me, as well as dipping occasionally into philosophy of language on the one hand and cognitive science on the other. I’ve learned some things about language and given some thought to how the insights and methods of linguistics can be used in analyzing legal issues.
Since I’m coming at this from the perspective of a practitioner rather than an academic, for me “analyzing legal issues” generally means “making legal arguments in specific cases,” not “developing grand theories.” That said, I’ve probably got more of an academic bent than your average practicing lawyer.
What I’m hoping to do with this blog is to get some of my ideas down on paper…uh, I mean on pixels, and see where things go. I’d like the blog to be of interest both to lawyers and their ilk and to linguists and theirs. Occasionally I’ll get into something that ‘s totally on the law side, and the same goes for the linguistics side.
Perhaps also some none-of-the-above.