That’s Not What I Meant! by Deborah Tannen


I read this book for my Intro to Linguistics class this semester. Specifically, this books focuses on sociolinguistics, which analyzes how people use language to communicate. Though I probably wouldn’t have picked up this book on my own, I thought it was a really interesting and insightful read.

Rating: [3/5]

Summary: In this book, Dr. Deborah Tannen analyzes how conversational styles affect relationships. Using a lot of personal examples, she demonstrates many different types of communication which can cause people difficulty in their relationships. She points out that these differences can sometimes cause relationships to fail if not addressed or properly understood. Understanding these differences can allow people to be aware of adapt their conversational styles to better communicate with others.

Likes: I personally found this book really interesting because I took a lot of communication classes at community college and I would have minored in it if my university offered it. This book expounded on a lot of the concepts I learned in my communication classes. So, I liked the book because it’s a topic I find fascinating.

Dislikes: The book can get a little dry and repetitive. However, I might be a little biased in saying that because I had to read the whole thing in one sitting and stayed up until 2 a.m. to finish it.

TL;DR: If you have a passion for language and communication, you are definitely going to like this book.


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