Drowning in Possibility: Commonplace Metaphors and the Existing Pool of Knowledge Surrounding Aquatic Safety Education
Are we making the same argument? Rhetors claim that when arguments center on the same term, but use different underlying meanings, adequate solutions cannot be reached. In essence, we cannot reach adequate solutions because we are actually making different arguments without coming to that realization. This rhetorical concept can also be applied to health education and to examining our understanding of what it means to be “safe” in an aquatic environment. This essay describes research gathered on the general public’s conceptualizations of aquatic safety. By rhetorically destabilizing “aquatic safety” as a commonplace metaphor, the nuances of terms like “drowning,” “prevention,” and “safety” are acknowledged and presented to stabilize arguments surrounding the terms for the sake of creating new aquatic education policy.
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