Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Do We Need A Word For Everything?

"How and why we put words to things is a hotly debated topic at the heart of linguistics. They allow us to communicate, of course, but to what extent do they help us think?"

"Words, at their most basic, bridge our subconscious to the physical environment."

“One of the things that [language] does is allow you to put that information about anything belonging to that category into memory and retrieve it easily, and therefore also talk about it to other people..."

Most linguists today agree that having a word for something alters our perception of it in some way. This is a version of the “Sapir-Whorf hypothesis....

My Comment: It's good to remind ourselves of the abstract nature of languages. Thoughts without words are closer to sensate reality than we'd generally like to believe: