The Role of Patience in Arguments About Vaccine Science

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Abstract

We value dialogue deeply. In public disagreements over science, however, ideals like “parsimony” and “objectivity” can create false justification for refusing dialogue. We impatiently proclaim the “facts” of scientific consensus, treating them as nonrhetorical objects, letting the science “speak for itself.” This essay makes a case for patient discourses of science, willing to acknowledge even the concerns of “pseudoscientific” publics, like vaccine denialists. Anthimeria is discussed as a practice for patiently “playing” with the tokens of expression associated with ours and others’ epistemological commitments, in order to embrace opportunities of knowing and relational being-together through the most “becoming of terms.”.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)513-528
Number of pages16
JournalWestern Journal of Communication
Volume82
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 8 2018
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Communication

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