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Joe Martin
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Words don't mean: they evoke. The telementation model of language has been thoroughly debunked by Roy Harris. When we hear (or see) a word it evokes a mental image--more technically activates a stored neural pattern--and those stored patterns are the results of cumulative personal experiences. Crucially, they are different for every person. Evoked images may or may not match some external object, and may or may not prompt a hearer to direct their attention to such an object in the environment. The evoking and the directing are two different things, and perceiving a word only accomplishes the former. What you mean by "directs attention" is not clear, but seems inadequate to account for both these two things. Words could be said to "direct our attention to" a mental image of a referent, but we still have free will and can ignore it and direct our attention elsewhere. ------------------------- BLOGGER: I'm standing by my post.
Toggle Commented Aug 15, 2011 on What is Language About? at Babel's Dawn
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Aug 14, 2011