2018년 6월 6일 수요일

트랜스미러: writing style// unclear turns of synonyms or change of terms


Almost every author employs various synonyms not to repeat the same word. But, what if those synonyms to carry the same meaning are used for a relatively specific concept or notion? In that case, can those different words successfully convey the same meaning to readers?

This too is an exercise in assessing, understanding, or finding some point in writings. Below is an example:

(1)
[J]ust as the existence of a price system doesn't guarantee a good outcome ( ... ), the absence of prices doesn't necessarily guarantee an inefficient one. There are lots of “market-like” ways of getting people ( ... ) to express their preferences and to use these wants and desires as inputs into deciding who gets what. Market prices are just one of them ( ... ). But how do these preferences get translated into allocations, if not through the wisdom of central planners, or the magic of the market?
(2)
The field of market design is, in a sense, the blue-sky-thinking branch of economics. ( ... ) It gets economists away from thinking inside the box, and a very small one at that. Think about it like this. Suppose you want to help people commute safely and efficiently across the East River, from Brooklyn to Manhattan. Traditional economics is the equivalent of assuming that the only two ways of doing so are bridges or ferry. Mechanism design imagines the broad set of possibilities─zip line, catapult, people mover─then figures out which will work best.
(3)
It
's what, in technical terms, is called constrained optimization ( ... ). Mechanism designers consider the restrictions imposed by laws, human nature, our sense of right and wrong, and the strategizing that kidney patients, school applicants, and others may engage in to get a better organ or education. And they design a mechanism to best to fulfill society's needs and wants within those constraints.
(4)
It
's economics as engineering or plumbing rather than economics as physics.
(Inner Lives of Markets, p. 133)
In paragraph (1), there apears a contrast between two opposed concepts. On the one hand, there are terms like a ‘price system’, ‘market prices’, and the ‘market’. And, on the other, there are terms like the ‘absence of prices’ and ‘central planners’, which have the meanings opposed to the formers. Meanwhile, the term “‘market-like’ ways” hints there is a middle road between those contrasted concepts or meanings.

In paragraph (2), a new term, ‘market design’, surfaces; this seems to suggest that it'll take baton from “‘market-like’ ways”. In consecutive sentences, the pronoun, ‘it’ carry the term ‘market design’ forward. But, then, suddenly appears another new term ‘mechanism design’. From then on, in (3) and (4), this one displaces the former ‘market design’.

So, does ‘mechanism design’ mean ‘market design’? Does ‘mechanism designer’ mean ‘market designer’? And, does ‘design[ing] a mechanism’ mean ‘design[ing] a market’? This flow of synonyms seems quite awkward. Isn't some more explanation necessary to relate those two terms, market and mechanism?

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