Context Counts assembles, for the first time, the work of pre-eminent linguist Robin Tolmach Lakoff. A career that spans some forty years, Lakoff remains one of the most influential linguists of the 20th-century. The early papers show the genesis of Lakoff's inquiry into the relationship of language and social power, ideas later codified in the groundbreaking Language and Woman's Place and Talking Power. The late papers reflect her continued exposition of power dynamics beyond gender that are established and represented in language.
This volume offers a retrospective analysis of Lakoff's work, with each paper preceded by an introduction from a prominent linguist in the field, including both contemporaries and students of Lakoff's work, and further, Lakoff's own conversation with these responses. This engaging and, at times, moving reevaluation pays homage to Lakoff's far-reaching influence upon linguistics, while also serving as an unusual form of autobiography revealing the decades' long evolution of a scholarly career.