In academic texts, writers often use the word 'considerable' when they don't want to state their ideas too strongly. This is called rhetorical understatement and is one of the ways in which writers try to gain acceptance of their ideas.
When Do Writers Use Understatements?
At the end of the 20th century, two scientists, Rushton and Ankney published articles claiming that women have smaller brains than men, and therefore make less successful researchers. If the ideas of Rushton and Ankney were accepted today, this would cause considerable damage to the ideals of democracy and equality.
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