Language as a Way of Knowing

“Who does not know another language does not know his own” – Goethe

This quote provides much meaning and significance to the word “language”. Our mean of communication and understanding is through the use of language. How will you ever know the significance of how you present your ideas through the use of certain words if you have not evaluated or compared it to another language? Once you have developed understanding through another mean of communication, you then understand the importance and significance of how your language is constructed, as well as a different perspectives to your own. You can convert your ideas in different orders and manners depending on the type of language you have studied. For example, I take spanish as my second language and I have learned through the couple years of studying, that our own language is more complex than other languages. I have noticed that the English language is much more complicated compared to the Spanish language, which I would’ve never known without taking another language. Then again, it is easy to me because I know and use my language every day and find it easy, but to others who do not speak English, it is hard. 

 

To what extent should offensive language be censored. Can a language be banned?

There are certain words in our language that are intended to be hurtful, however recently some negative words have been deprived from there true meaning. Sometimes saying this “offensive language” is perceived as normal and not harmful at all. The mindset towards offensive language is slowly starting to turn a corner in a way that people don’t look negatively down on any particular set of words because it is used so often. Not to say these words can be used against someone because they can be and actually still are, which can be a problem. In comparison, it may start being that words we wouldn’t necessarily have ever thought to be offensive are starting to be perceived as offensive. However, in reality we can’t mentally control a person, and that being said, offensive language couldn’t be banned or censored successfully. 

This article discusses a particular word that is being banned in Israel because of how it is being used and what meaning it gives off in that country. It discusses how the people feel about this new law: 

 

Questions:

1. How much could you know about the world if you had no language or means of communicating with other people?

This setback would cost you from knowing and experiencing all the pleasures of life and what it has to offer. You would find little knowledge about the world because you would only have your perspectives and experiences to go by, instead having other opinions to compare yours to. Friendship and love are both products of the building of communication with other people. Missing out on this huge important factor would be life damaging. 

This TedTalk is based on kids with autism, whom have trouble with communication and language. 

 

2. What are some examples of words that have entered the English language as a result of the computer revolution?

Some words have become common in our English language due to the computer revolution. For example, we use the word ‘google’ as a verb now. “I am going to google that,” or “I just googled this.” We use the word Facebook and tweeted as well. “I Facebooked that earlier today,” and “I tweeted that this morning.” 

Here is a list of words added to the English language:

 http://dranil-marketingmusings.blogspot.com/2010/12/iv-new-words-that-have-entered-into.html

 

3. Many jokes are based on ambiguity…can you give an example?

How do you make a pig fast?……………take away his food

 

4. What would be the advantages and disadvantages of everyone in the world spoke a common language? What would be gained and what would be lost?

There would be no diversity and no new experiences for people to have. You wouldn’t be able to obtain the full experience of traveling to another country and learning another culture’s language. If everyone spoke the same language, then everyone will most likely have the same culture. If there is no diversity the it would be hard to differentiate between people and how we would acknowledge them. The world would be no fun and we wouldn’t learn much more of anything about anyone because we would all be the same. I obviously have more of a negative opinion about this, however a benefit from this could be that everyone would be easily categorized and no one would have to be studied and/or examined much. 

Here, people voted and responded by justifying their answer to the question, “Would the world be better off if we all spoke the same language?”:

http://www.debate.org/opinions/would-the-world-be-better-off-if-everyone-spoke-the-same-language

 

5. In 1947, the U.S. Department of War was renamed the Department of Defense. Do you think this makes a difference? Explain.

The original name, ‘Department of War’ gave off a feeling of being more inclined to war and in favor of it. I some ways it seemed basic and that it wouldn’t serve anything help and defense to war. However, changing the last word to defense made all the difference because it ensures that this department will provide good quality safety. It has a much better “slogan name”. 

 

6. Take 2 advertising slogans of your choice – such as “Just Do It” by Nike- explain why you think they are effective (or not)

“Every kiss begins with Kay” by Kay Jewelry 

This is an effective slogan because who wouldn’t want to receive a kiss from giving a gift? Not only does it promise a kiss out of buying their jewelry but the slogan in general is very catchy, and when something is very catchy, you will automatically remember it when you are searching for a jewelry stores. When something is catchy and well-known, it can persuade someone to think it is better quality than others. 

“Eat Fresh” by Subway 

Who wouldn’t want to be eating fresh, yummy, healthy food? The phrase ‘Eat Fresh’ gives off the impression that this is going to be healthy food. Everyone wants to eat healthy but still eat good food. This slogan reels people in with its catchy, well-known tune and “healthy” impression. 

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Touch and Sound

Articles relating touch:

1. The magical Mr. Potato Head, aka Kissenger, is a device that allows you to wirelessly transmit an actual smooch to your lover who is not with you by its pressure sensors, which sends your impression of your lips in your egg to the other receiving Kissenger.

How would we know that transmitted kiss is the exact impression?

2. This article proves the importance of a nonsexual touch by listing 10 psychological effects that shows how powerful nonsexual touches can be and its influence on our thought process.

How would we really know the true thoughts of someone who has been touched in a nonsexual way?

3. Babies, children, and elderly all around the world benefit from touch to make their lives better.

What if someone actually doesn’t liked to be touched at all?

4. This article discusses the science behind touch, and how powerful it can be when a guy touches a girl.

How do we know when we’re in love?

5. This article is about how scientist have learned to fooled our sense of touch.

How reliable is our sense of touch?

6. This video/article is about a woman in an art exhibit using her sense of touch and fate to find her husband.

How reliable can a kiss be to determine our husbands?

 

Articles relating sound:

1. All of the world’s natural sounds are available  and digital online.

Is technology a good source to extenuate the real natural sound of this world?

2. The Cocktail Party Effect  is about how humans have the capability of tuning our ears to just one voice.

How reliable is the information we receive from our hearing?

3. Make the City Sound Better is the name of the campaign that a company is using for their new release of headphones, which takes the regular city sound and makes music from it for the regular urbanite.

Does music have the capability of enhancing our daily routine without our awareness?

4. This article discusses that Beethoven’s deafness could have influenced his compositions.

If you were deaf, would you let that stop you from reaching your full potential?

5. This article talks about how the sound of the food we eat affects our taste shown through a study.

Does sound affect what you considered tastes good?

6. This article is about how we consume information influences what we learn from it.

If the information we consume influences what we learn, how does this affect our society?

Beliefs, Mood, and Culture affects how we see things

Our emotions and environment around us influence how we react and perceive things. If you are in a bad mood, then you are most likely to perceive a situation with a negative attitude, whereas if you were in a good mood, then you would perceive a situation through a better, positive manner. Not only can your mood greatly affect how you comprehend something, but also how you were raised through your beliefs and different culture. If someone were raised in a culture where it is laid back and casual, then they are more than likely to handle situations in a laid back manner. People’s beliefs are very important and will determine how they handle a situations based on the morals and beliefs and what to them is considered right or wrong. Every person is unique in their own way, which then determines how they perceive things.

 

Theories of Reality

Out of the three theories of reality, I feel I adhere to the common sense realism the most. The slogan for it is, “What you see is what is there”, which I particularly can both agree and disagree with. Everyone has there common sense factor apart them to help the differentiate when something is reasonable to do or not. This world is not filled with definite answers that are either black or white. The world is filled with many shades of grey; not everything fits into one box. We have been learning that everyone has his or her own special way of perceiving the world. How will we ever know that we all see, experience, and feel the same things? We will never, that’s the answer. Just because the world may appear one way doesn’t mean that is how the world really is. Everyone has his or her own interpretations based on our own unique sense organs.

Hilary Lawson’s Story

John had a condition called visual agnosia, which is the inability to recognize anything or distinguish perfectly ordinary objects. He wrote the book, The Man who Mistook his Wife for a Hat, which goes in to more depth about his condition, which is rare and unusual. “It was the 18th-century philosopher Immanuel Kant who first argued that experience was not merely the product of sensation but the result of combining sensation and interpretation”. Recorded cases of the condition, visual agnosia, implied that he was right. Everyone needs to have form and order to categorize this world we live in, and to have such a disability like John’s must be difficult. To simply imagine having a condition of such kind brings me discomfort. Every day we are using our senses without acknowledging the fact of how lucky and blessed we are to have the ability to taste, smell, touch, hear, and see the world we live in even when we don’t notice it. People out there, for instance John, have been stripped of some of those abilities. Sometimes we can take what we have for granted and not mean to. I couldn’t imagine how scary it would be to walk around and not know where you are 24.7. I would have multiple fears constantly running through my brain. His story is real living proof of that we are privileged to have what we have.