Of course, all this does not mean that the image "more is up" is wholly arbitrary. When water is poured into a bottle, for instance, the more water there is, the higher its level. And if apples are piled up in the larder, the more apples, the higher the pile, so the image "more is up" is clearly rooted in real life and based on experience.
This comes from "The Unfolding of Language - an evolutionary tour of mankind's greatest invention". I find this topic fascinating. I think language to a large extent determines many of our thinking mechanisms. If you don't have "have" or possessives (hers, his, ours etc.) in your language then you don't really understand the notion of ownership.
Sometimes I wonder if it's possible to have an ego without language. Because if it's not, then ego is born of language - and therefore "unreal".
Incidentally, I didn't know what a larder was either. (It's a synonym of "pantry")
If you feel so inclined, feel free to do this one. Thanks to Daniel who made this morning's topic hunt so eaaaaasy.
Based on this post alone, someday I would love to sit down and talk with you (here - about language). I think you are absolutely right about the effect of language on our perception of our world. I also think that the study of another language to the point of some competence helps us understand our birth tongue. I never really "got" English until I studied German. And when I was lucky enough to study some non-Western European languages, the roof came off because you are then dealing with an entirely different World View (I'll spare you the German. :) ) and you have to get into that World View to learn it.
As for French, as much as I try I just cannot get French. My mathematical mind just cannot comprehend a language that cannot conceive of 70 or 90 except to add 10 to 60 and 80. (***big grin*** - an apologies to all the French speakers).
I am old enough to know terms such as Larder and Ice Box and Victrola. (no Ice Box has nothing to do with Anne Coulter!)
Maybe I will do it tonight. I'm running late for work.
Happy 1st day back to work for you!
yay! have a good day back to work~!
I knew what larder meant. My grandma used that along with ice box and davenport (for sofa).
I saw that meme just yesterday, but it was to post just the single 5th sentence:
"This poem, by Richard Jones not only portrays a woman of ancient China, but does it in the style of early Chinese poetry, at least as it sounds rendered in English."
It's from The Poet's Companion.
A bit higher level from the classes I teach.
Sometimes I thing language has become a complete impediment to communication.
but the only books i have in front of me right now are html books, so there's no that!! cute idea though! :)
French and Spanish I can sort of manage, but Hebrew puts my mind on a completely different track, and I immediately derail. I think you really have something there, about language "creating" the ego. The ego is all about definition, and therefore separation,and that isn't really possible without language to articulate that pseudo reality. Why is it that Baby's first two words are Mama and Dada, and then the third and fourth words are "no" and "mine". Interesting.
Do you really want me to post from my thesaurus?! It's currently the closest book to me. Oh here: the fifth word in the list is "contemplative" - not sure what to make of that!
thanks to you, and daniel, i now have a post for tomorrow.
and thanks to dirk, i feel ancient. i knew what all those words were, too :P
If there is one thing that I like to think about it’s how we come to understand and explain the world around us through language.
Rather than being thinky, I can tell one of my few language anecdotes. You may remember the Chevy Nova. During the seventies, Chevy expected the Nova to be the new car that everybody adored (didn’t quite play out). Marketing in Mexico, however, stumped them. “No va,” in Spanish, means “No go.”
I knew what a larder was.
I haven't reached page 123 of the book I am reading, so I don't want to do this one in case it spoils it for me. After all, it's Stephen Kings' latest book called "The Cell" so if I find out too soon what happens, I will be lost. Or maybe I won't. Stephen King is pretty basic language. Which makes me feel like a total 'tard when I see that you are reading a book ABOUT language.
Maybe I should read to learn instead of reading for fun...
I have no nearest book, so I can't play along.
The new movie Babel with Brad Pitt is supposed to examine language and its limitations, you should check it out. It also has Brad Pitt in it, so it won't be bad to look at, which is always good.
I've always wondered: is "larder" an American Southernism? Is it a Northeast thing?
Isn't a larder Canadian Lingo?
In desperate need of poutine and fries and gravy here!!
Just found your site via wemovetocanada. Pleasant surprise.
On the way an individual thinks being determined/influenced by the language he speaks, one of the coolest linguistic facts I learned while studying languages indigenous to the Americas was that some languages like Aymara force the speaker to indicate how they know something is true via the structure of the language, kind of like the way English generally forces the speaker to indicate gender when using the third person singular pronoun. So in Aymara, if I remember correctly, the form of the verb chosen intrinsically indicates whether you know what you're saying through personal experience, personal observation, or hearsay and there's no way around that. So they really had problems with Europeans telling them things like, "In the beginning God created heaven and earth." And Europeans really had problems with certain indigenous languages like Nahuatl, the Aztec language, because its third person singular doesn't indicate gender.
I read a lot so I'm familiar with the term larder. I was not, however, familiar with the word meme. I am now.
Ego w/o language. Interesting thought.
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