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discursive (adj) (of writing or speech) digressive; wandering from one point to another.

A lecture is discursive if it does not focus on one point but keeps moving from topic to topic. If a speaker wanders away from the main point his speech is discursive. A discursive speech of writing is a rambling speech or a piece of writing without a plan, and it moves from topic to topic.

  • The audiences were tiring of the professor's discursive lecture because he was hopping, without any plan, from topic to topic.
  • When the author of the novel is paid by the word, they are sure to be discursive, moving without a plan from episode to episode, just to lengthen the novel and get paid more.
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Last Modified : 11-May 2009
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