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Skip The Legalese And Keep It Short, Justices Say : NPR
"All of the justices talk about "legalese" in disparaging terms…many refer to great fiction writers as masters of language.

"The only good way to learn about writing is to read good writing," says Chief Justice John Roberts.

That sentiment is echoed by Breyer, who points to Proust, Stendhal & Montesquieu as his inspirations. Justice Anthony Kennedy loves Hemingway, Shakespeare, Solzhenitsyn, Dickens & Trollope.

Justice Thomas says a good legal brief reminds him of the TV show 24. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg says one of the great influences on her writing was her European literature professor at Cornell, Vladimir Nabokov…

Many of the justices admit to linguistic pet peeves. Kennedy hates adverbs & disdains nouns that are converted to verbs — "incentivize," for example. Scalia readily admits to being a snoot.

"Snoots are those who are nitpickers for the mot juste, for using a word precisely the way it should be used, not dulling it by misuse. I'm a snoot."…"
writing  law  legalese  supremecourt  2011  literature  classideas  editing  rewriting  shakespeare  hemingway  montesquieu  proust  stendhal  charlesdickens  trollope  vladmirnavakov  antoninscalia  ruthbaderginsburg  johnroberts  clarencethomas  language  geechee  vladimirnabokov  marcelproust 
june 2011 by robertogreco

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