Julie Sedivy earned her Ph.D. in Linguistics from the University of Rochester. She has spent twelve years on the faculty at Brown University's Department of Cognitive and Linguistic Sciences, and is currently an adjunct professor at the University of Calgary, where she teaches the language and psychology of persuasion. She is the lead author of the new book Sold on Language: How Advertisers Talk to You and What This Says About You. She is now working on a textbook, The Psychology of Language, and is a regular contributor to the linguistics blog Language Log.
Language is harvested for its most persuasive elements by those who seek to influence our choices, whether in commercial or political spheres. The sounds and structures of language offer up a rich variety of persuasive tools, with many of their effects playing out at an unconscious level. People who craft persuasive messages are paying attention to scientific evidence about some of the more hidden layers of human communication. You might as well too.