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2014-03-02 Sun

#1770. semiotic triangle の底辺が直接につながっているとの誤解 [semantics][semiotics][sign][language_myth][sapir-whorf_hypothesis][linguistic_relativism]

 昨日の記事「#1769. Ogden and Richards の semiotic triangle」 ([2014-03-01-1]) で,Ogden and Richards の有名な図を示した.彼らによれば,SYMBOL と REFERENT をつなぐ底辺が間接的なつながり(点線)しかないにもかかわらず,世の中では多くの場合,直接的なつながり(実線)があるかのように誤解されている点が問題であるということだった ("The fundamental and most prolific fallacy is . . . that the base of the triangle given above is filled in" (15)) .これを正したいとの著者の思いは "missionary fervor" (Eco vii) とでも言うべきほどのもので,第1章の直前には,この思いを共有する先人たちからの引用が多く掲げられている.

 "All life comes back to the question of our speech---the medium through which we communicate." ---HENRY JAMES.
 "Error is never so difficult to be destroyed as when it has its root in Language." ---BENTHAM.
 "We have to make use of language, which is made up necessarily of preconceived ideas. Such ideas unconsciously held are the most dangerous of all." ---POINCARÉ.
 "By the grammatical structure of a group of languages everything runs smoothly for one kind of philosophical system, whereas the way is as it were barred for certain other possibilities." ---NIETZCHE.
 "An Englishman, a Frenchman, a German, and an Italian cannot by any means bring themselves to think quite alike, at least on subjects that involve any depth of sentiment: they have not the verbal means." ---Prof. J. S. MACKENZIE.
 "In Primitive Thought the name and object named are associated in such wise that the one is regarded as a part of the other. The imperfect separation of words from things characterizes Greek speculation in general." ---HERBERT SPENCER.
 "The tendency has always been strong to believe that whatever receives a name must be an entity or being, having an independent existence of its own: and if no real entity answering to the name could be found, men did not for that reason suppose that none existed, but imagined that it was something peculiarly abstruse and mysterious, too high to be an object of sense." ---J. S. MILL.
 "Nothing is more usual than for philosophers to encroach on the province of grammarians, and to engage in disputes of words, while they imagine they are handling controversies of the deepest importance and concern." ---HUME.
 "Men content themselves with the same words as other people use, as if the very sound necessarily carried the same meaning." ---LOCKE.
 "A verbal discussion may be important or unimportant, but it is at least desirable to know that it is verbal.." ---Sir G. CORNEWALL LEWIS.
 "Scientific controversies constantly resolve themselves into differences about the meaning of words." ---Prof. A. Schuster.


 いくつかの引用で示唆される通り,Ogden and Richards が取り除こうと腐心しているこの誤解は,サピア=ウォーフの仮説 (sapir-whorf_hypothesis) や言語相対論 (linguistic_relativism) の問題にも関わってくる.実際に読んでみると,The Meaning of Meaning は多くの問題の種を方々にまき散らしているのがわかり,その意味で "a seminal work" と呼んでしかるべき著書といえるだろう.

 ・ Ogden, C. K. and I. A. Richards. The Meaning of Meaning. 1923. San Diego, New York, and London: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1989.
 ・ Eco, Umberto. "The Meaning of The Meaning of Meaning." Trans. William Weaver. Introduction. The Meaning of Meaning. C. K. Ogden and I. A. Richards. San Diego, New York, and London: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1989. v--xi.

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