The Language of the Oil Fields: Examination of an Industrial Argot

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This book started as Gerald Haslam's Master of Arts thesis paper at San Francisco State University, in 1965, written with the encouragement of one of his instructors who specialized in language studies... S. I. Hayakawa (who was later the subject of one of Haslam's books). This thesis paper is still available to read at the university's library! In June 1967, a highly edited version -- the 114-page thesis was brought down to just 11 pages -- appeared as an article in the journal ETC: A Review of General Semantics, vol. 24, No. 2.

Finally, in 1972 a small publisher called Old Adobe Press released the thesis in its final book form... and when I say "small publisher" I mean really small, as in Gerald Haslam published the book himself under the name of "Old Adobe Press!" Haslam went on to published two more books under the name of Old Adobe, the first two editions of his book Okies: Selected Stories, and his first novel Masks. By then, other publishers had become interested in doing the publishing part of the job for him, so Haslam could finally focus on just plain writing more.


Language of the Oil Fields was published by Old Adobe Press in 1972... which means Gerald Haslam published this book hisownself under the name of "Old Adobe Press." Nowadays, a copy of Language of the Oil Fields is reeeeealy hard to find!