The Temptation Of Language

Of course it has been said before, mostly notably in recent years in the playwrights of the Theatre Of The Absurd, that we find it difficult, not easy to convey meaning when we talk and write, because the same word has nuances of meaning for other people they do not have for us. Equally, the words we use are often not up to the exacting task of conveying ‘exact’ meaning but merely get us into the general area of what we mean to say. A problem that lead GB Shaw to suggest expanding the English alphabet to give is more words and more discipline over their use. (Thereby getting over some of the problems of one word meaning more than one thing depending upon context, and so forth.)

I have noted in reading, how different writers writing the same thing, will place the words in a different order (most particularly sub-clauses) but even negatives can be written differently (the placing of ‘no’ and ‘not’) simply because their brains work differently.

And this is the hub of difference and maybe even talent – the way in which connections are made within the brain. Because just as the human being can generate an infinite number of languages so within a single language we can generate and endless supply of meanings.

Added to which languages are always changing. Meaning itself is evolving with us.

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February 2019
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