the language of postmodernism

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Skepdick
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by Skepdick »

Iwannaplato wrote: Sun Dec 11, 2022 7:40 am
Skepdick wrote: Tue Nov 22, 2022 6:11 am
iambiguous wrote: Tue Nov 22, 2022 2:35 am Instead, moral nihilists of my ilk propose that the "best of all possible worlds" revolves around "moderation, negotiation and compromise" in a political economy that revolves as much as possible around "democracy and the rule of law."
I don't understand what a moral nihilist would negotiate for; or compromise about.

If you don't value anything then you have nothing to fight for and nothing to lose.
This exchange manages to quickly sum up two strange positions. The moral nihilist is presenting 'the best...' rather than....'what he or she wants'. It is presented as objective.
And this elicits a response where a critic of moral anti-realism seems to think that if you don't believe your values are objective then you can't have values. That you wouldn't value anything.
That's just philosophical nonsense.

There is no difference between somebody who believes their values are objective; and somebody who believes their values are subjective if they both hold the exact same values.

Their narrative about their beliefs differs, but not their behaviour - it's a distinction without a difference.
Iwannaplato wrote: Sun Dec 11, 2022 7:40 am I can certainly sympathize with this response, given the absurdity of the moral nihilists hypocrisy, in this case, but since the point is universalized, it is just as confused.
Behaviourally speaking: there is no difference between a nihilist and Buridan's ass. If you value nothing - you can't make value-based choices. Behviourally, this is equivalent to valuing all values equally - the result is the same. You can't make value-based choices.

In so far as the two opposing extremes exist - they only exist so that synthesis can occur: thesis-antithesis -> synthesis.

Both interlocutors are "confused" but the confusion and extremeties are necessary to synthesize the continuum.
Iwannaplato wrote: Sun Dec 11, 2022 7:40 am Then the moral nihilist in the exchange might be making sense while writing poorly. But given it would be so easy to say....

I wish we focused more on compromise, etc., than....might makes right or whatever he or she thinks the other approaches are.
And, of course, one can mix approaches, they are not mutually exclusive.
The entire game of trying to define yourself is bunk. It's so much easier to just drop the philosophical nonsense and admit that your values are inconsistent; non-universizable; or ineffable devoid of context. Because our values ultimately serve a pragmatic purpose we can never speak of them in general Philosophical, context-free, theoretical terms! I have no idea what I value the most; or least. I only know what I value more when values clash.

Just say what you want in the given context. Just because you claim to value negotiation and compromise in general doesn't mean you are willing to compromise and negotiate on the particular issue at hand.
iambiguous
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by iambiguous »

Skepdick wrote: Tue Nov 22, 2022 6:11 am
iambiguous wrote: Tue Nov 22, 2022 2:35 am Instead, moral nihilists of my ilk propose that the "best of all possible worlds" revolves around "moderation, negotiation and compromise" in a political economy that revolves as much as possible around "democracy and the rule of law."
I don't understand what a moral nihilist would negotiate for; or compromise about.
Here it depends on how "fractured and fragmented" the moral nihilist is. Suppose you find yourself in a situation where a friend of yours is pregnant, doesn't want to be, and has an abortion. But she has it in a jurisdiction where abortion is a crime. You find out about it. Or you even and abet in it.

What to do? Is there a moral obligation here given your own philosophy of life? Well, here of course all of the actual existential variables come into play. The specific context. How close a friend is she to you? How do you feel about abortion? What factors might come into play if you do this instead of that? How will family and friends react to you either helping her or turning her in? Are there "after the fact" legal consequences?

Of course, if you are a hardcore deontologist you do what you are "categorically and imperatively" obligated to do as a rational human being. You do your duty. But if you are a moral nihilist pulled and tugged ambivalently in different directions your options increase dramatically.

Then, of course, those here who are devoutly religious. They do what their own rendition of God commands them to do. After all, Hell itself is on the line here for many.
Skepdick wrote: Tue Nov 22, 2022 6:11 amIf you don't value anything then you have nothing to fight for and nothing to lose.
Moral nihilists value things. They fight for things. They win or lose like everyone else. They just recognize that what they have come to value or fight for is rooted existentially in dasein. And that had their lives been different they might well have ended up valuing something else entirely.

And that in a No God world there does not appear to be a secular font that provides one with an objective moral narrative and political agenda. It all revolves more around existential leaps to particular moral and political prejudices.

Again, unless, given all of the One True Paths out there -- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_p ... ideologies -- someone on one of them is able to provide us with a truly demonstrable argument that their path really is the next best thing to God for us mere mortals.

Anyone here on one of them care to take a stab at it?
Skepdick
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by Skepdick »

iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am How close a friend is she to you? How do you feel about abortion? What factors might come into play if you do this instead of that? How will family and friends react to you either helping her or turning her in? Are there "after the fact" legal consequences?
But why would familly, friends and social interactions matter to a nihilist? There's no intrinsic value to any of it.
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am Of course, if you are a hardcore deontologist you do what you are "categorically and imperatively" obligated to do as a rational human being.
You do your duty. But if you are a moral nihilist pulled and tugged ambivalently in different directions your options increase dramatically.
To a nihilist: what value is there in obligation or duty?!?
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am Then, of course, those here who are devoutly religious. They do what their own rendition of God commands them to do. After all, Hell itself is on the line here for many.
To a nihilist: what value is there in religion; or God; or any idea really?
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am Moral nihilists value things.
Moral nihilists value things that are inherently not valuable? How's that any different to what every human does?
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am They fight for things. They win or lose like everyone else. They just recognize that what they have come to value or fight for is rooted existentially in dasein. And that had their lives been different they might well have ended up valuing something else entirely.
Yip. You are describing every human that's every lived.
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am And that in a No God world there does not appear to be a secular font that provides one with an objective moral narrative and political agenda. It all revolves more around existential leaps to particular moral and political prejudices.
So there's intrinsic value in a moral narrative and a political agenda?
iambiguous
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by iambiguous »

Iwannaplato wrote: Sun Dec 11, 2022 7:40 am
Skepdick wrote: Tue Nov 22, 2022 6:11 am
iambiguous wrote: Tue Nov 22, 2022 2:35 am Instead, moral nihilists of my ilk propose that the "best of all possible worlds" revolves around "moderation, negotiation and compromise" in a political economy that revolves as much as possible around "democracy and the rule of law."
I don't understand what a moral nihilist would negotiate for; or compromise about.

If you don't value anything then you have nothing to fight for and nothing to lose.
This exchange manages to quickly sum up two strange positions. The moral nihilist is presenting 'the best...' rather than....'what he or she wants'. It is presented as objective.
Again, let's leave the realm of "general description intellectual contraptions" and try to bring this down to earth. Language used by the moral and political objectivists among us to convey their own dogmatic views on, say, the Second Amendment here in America. Now, the fulminating fanatics at both ends of the political spectrum will intertwine what they construe to be the best government policy here with what they themselves want. That's almost always one and same thing to them.

Whereas a moral nihilist [this one] recognizes that those on both sides of the issue are able to make reasonable arguments merely by starting out with different sets of assumptions about the "human condition" itself: I vs. we, idealism vs. pragmatism, nature vs. nurture, big government vs. small government, capitalism vs. socialism, etc. Also, that any particular individual's own moral and political convictions here are often rooted existentially in the life that he or she has actually lived. Born and raised in a gun culture community, born and raised in a No Gun pacifist community.
Iwannaplato wrote: Sun Dec 11, 2022 7:40 amAnd this elicits a response where a critic of moral anti-realism seems to think that if you don't believe your values are objective then you can't have values. That you wouldn't value anything.
On the contrary, any number of men and women embrace "moderation, negotiation and compromise" within the parameters of a "democracy and the rule of law" political economy. You value things existentially but not in a fiercely dogmatic "my way or the highway" manner. The "henry quirk syndrome" let's call it.
Iwannaplato wrote: Sun Dec 11, 2022 7:40 amI can certainly sympathize with this response, given the absurdity of the moral nihilists hypocrisy, in this case, but since the point is universalized, it is just as confused.
Let him note my own hypocrisy here. In regard to an issue like abortion or gun control or any other "conflicting good" I have focused in on. What exactly does he mean by that?

But, no, it's straight back up into the didactic clouds for him.
Iwannaplato wrote: Sun Dec 11, 2022 7:40 amThe only possible excuse for the use of 'best' is that it is in quotes. But then so are negotiation, moderation and compromise. Which means the sentence has no meaning at all. Why not keep those out of quotation marks? Though I suppose a lot of people misuse quotes. Perhaps the first quotation marks around 'the best.....' were meant to say (not objectively) and the second use were just, well, a flawed use.
Instead, let him reconfigure his accusations here with respect to a particular issue, given a particular set of circumstances.

Or, perhaps, is it time for him to remind us once again how futile it is to engage with me here.
iambiguous
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by iambiguous »

Skepdick wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 8:08 am
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am How close a friend is she to you? How do you feel about abortion? What factors might come into play if you do this instead of that? How will family and friends react to you either helping her or turning her in? Are there "after the fact" legal consequences?
But why would familly, friends and social interactions matter to a nihilist? There's no intrinsic value to any of it.
Huh?

We all come into the world hard-wired to feel all manner of emotions in regard to others around us. We can love them, hate them, envy them, shame them, admire them, ridicule them, fear them, subjugate them.

But what we do feel as individuals is always a manifestation of the life we lived, the experiences we had, the things we were taught by others.

A nihilist is no exception if he or she chooses to interact with others socially, politically and economically in a community. Instead, a moral nihilist comes to recognize that his or her thoughts and feelings, like his or her value judgments, are the product of a particular existential trajectory given a particular life lived out in a particular world historically and culturally and experientially. And given a world awash in contingency, chance and change. A world where you never really know for certain what's around that next corner. A new experience, relationship or access to information and knowledge that prompts you to view your sense of reality in a whole different way. We don't call them "epiphanies" for nothing.

Or have you never had one of those? Has your life always been basically the same? Nothing to prompt you to reconsider things?
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am Of course, if you are a hardcore deontologist you do what you are "categorically and imperatively" obligated to do as a rational human being.
You do your duty. But if you are a moral nihilist pulled and tugged ambivalently in different directions your options increase dramatically.
Skepdick wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 8:08 amTo a nihilist: what value is there in obligation or duty?!?
That depends on just how "fractured and fragmented" he or she becomes. I don't believe that I am duty-bound or obligated to behave in any way other than how, here and now, I construe a particular situation. What's in it for me, sure, but oftentimes it's best for me when I take into account what's in it for others. Every situation is different.

It's just that for the religious folks and the deontologists, every situation is the same: their own rendition of "what would Jesus do?"
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am Moral nihilists value things.
Skepdick wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 8:08 amMoral nihilists value things that are inherently not valuable? How's that any different to what every human does?
Things that they have come to value existentially, subjectively, subjunctively. Whereas the moral objectivists value things because others have taught them, or they have thought themselves, to believe that some things are essentially/universally/fundamentally/naturally/intrinsically/necessarily valuable. That's why they are "duty bound" to sustain them.

It's just that some root this in idealism [Ayn Rand], others in materialism [Karl Marx], and others still in God and religion [the Pope]
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am They fight for things. They win or lose like everyone else. They just recognize that what they have come to value or fight for is rooted existentially in dasein. And that had their lives been different they might well have ended up valuing something else entirely.
Skepdick wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 8:08 amYip. You are describing every human that's every lived.
Right. Like "for all practical purposes" moral objectivists and moral nihilists are really not much different at all.
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am And that in a No God world there does not appear to be a secular font that provides one with an objective moral narrative and political agenda. It all revolves more around existential leaps to particular moral and political prejudices.
Skepdick wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 8:08 amSo there's intrinsic value in a moral narrative and a political agenda?
Simply unbelievable. Just the opposite is what I'm suggesting.
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by Skepdick »

iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 6:46 pm
Skepdick wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 8:08 am
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am How close a friend is she to you? How do you feel about abortion? What factors might come into play if you do this instead of that? How will family and friends react to you either helping her or turning her in? Are there "after the fact" legal consequences?
But why would familly, friends and social interactions matter to a nihilist? There's no intrinsic value to any of it.
Huh?

We all come into the world hard-wired to feel all manner of emotions in regard to others around us. We can love them, hate them, envy them, shame them, admire them, ridicule them, fear them, subjugate them.

But what we do feel as individuals is always a manifestation of the life we lived, the experiences we had, the things we were taught by others.

A nihilist is no exception if he or she chooses to interact with others socially, politically and economically in a community. Instead, a moral nihilist comes to recognize that his or her thoughts and feelings, like his or her value judgments, are the product of a particular existential trajectory given a particular life lived out in a particular world historically and culturally and experientially. And given a world awash in contingency, chance and change. A world where you never really know for certain what's around that next corner. A new experience, relationship or access to information and knowledge that prompts you to view your sense of reality in a whole different way. We don't call them "epiphanies" for nothing.

Or have you never had one of those? Has your life always been basically the same? Nothing to prompt you to reconsider things?
You are hiding behind the connotation of words! Preferences ARE intrinsic values! To prefer something (a feeling, emotion, outcome) is to value that thing intrinsinclally which contradicts the very definition of nihilism.

This is why I keep pointing out that nihilists don't exist! Anybody who calls themselves a nihilist is mistaken about their identity.
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am Moral nihilists value things.
Then they are NOT nihilists!
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am Things that they have come to value existentially, subjectively, subjunctively.
What other way "to value" is there?!?
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am Whereas the moral objectivists value things because others have taught them, or they have thought themselves, to believe that some things are essentially/universally/fundamentally/naturally/intrinsically/necessarily valuable. That's why they are "duty bound" to sustain them.
Distinction without a difference. WHY you value something doesn't matter in practice. All that matters is THAT you value it.

And if you value anything (however you've come to value it) you are not a nihilist.
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am Right. Like "for all practical purposes" moral objectivists and moral nihilists are really not much different at all.
For all practical purposes there are no nihilists. People who have no values can't make any pragmatic choices.

On what basis would you chose love over hate?
On what basis would you chose life over death?
On what basis would you chose moral over immoral action?
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 2:30 am Simply unbelievable. Just the opposite is what I'm suggesting.
I don't know what the "opposite" of an incoherent perspective entails. What's the "opposite" of kjhsgdfjhasgdkugafzkhsjdgfkajszdgf ?
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by iambiguous »

Skepdick wrote: Tue Dec 13, 2022 8:50 am
iambiguous wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 6:46 pm
Skepdick wrote: Mon Dec 12, 2022 8:08 am
But why would familly, friends and social interactions matter to a nihilist? There's no intrinsic value to any of it.
Huh?

We all come into the world hard-wired to feel all manner of emotions in regard to others around us. We can love them, hate them, envy them, shame them, admire them, ridicule them, fear them, subjugate them.

But what we do feel as individuals is always a manifestation of the life we lived, the experiences we had, the things we were taught by others.

A nihilist is no exception if he or she chooses to interact with others socially, politically and economically in a community. Instead, a moral nihilist comes to recognize that his or her thoughts and feelings, like his or her value judgments, are the product of a particular existential trajectory given a particular life lived out in a particular world historically and culturally and experientially. And given a world awash in contingency, chance and change. A world where you never really know for certain what's around that next corner. A new experience, relationship or access to information and knowledge that prompts you to view your sense of reality in a whole different way. We don't call them "epiphanies" for nothing.

Or have you never had one of those? Has your life always been basically the same? Nothing to prompt you to reconsider things?
You are hiding behind the connotation of words! Preferences ARE intrinsic values! To prefer something (a feeling, emotion, outcome) is to value that thing intrinsinclally which contradicts the very definition of nihilism.
Simply unbelievable. That "minds" of this sort gravitate to philosophy forums and dump this, uh, crap, on us.

Intrinsic preferences!!! Embedded in us -- from birth? -- by God? by "the universe"? By nature itself? Biological imperatives that we are compelled to act out...genetically?

The rest is just more of the same intellectual drivel.

You know, if only in my own "rooted existentially in dasein" personal opinion. 8)
iambiguous
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by iambiguous »

Can Language Affect Morality?
BY STEPH KOYFMAN at +Babbel magazine
Language and morality: is there really a link there? Is morality subjective, or does the compass always bend to a “true north” that exists outside of our cultural biases?
Here he is writing about morality using language and then asking whether language can affect morality.

What am I missing here? How could any discussion of morality bursting at the seams with language -- words -- not impart consequences?

Words like these: "How ought one to behave morally in a world bursting at the seams with both conflicting goods and contingency, chance and change?"

Given a particular context.

A context is chosen, the arguments are made. And depending on how successful we are at conveying our points, after the discussion we might actually prompt some to change their behaviors.

Indeed, the whole debate about subjective/objective morality itself...try to imagine it unfolding if no language at all was used.

So, of course language can affect morality. The real question is how successful we are at connecting the dots between words and worlds.
The idea of an objective sense of “right” and “wrong” has a strong hold on our cultural imagination, and it’s one that is central to many major religions, including Christianity, Judaism and Islam.
With religious language, however, the point is less regarding the words used to champion "commandments" here and now and more regarding the words used to champion "immortality" and "salvation" there and then. Words used to describe Heaven and Hell too. Morality before and after you die.
Leave it to scientific inquiry, then, to poke some holes in this theory. Various studies have shown that moral judgments can actually change when they’re made in a foreign language, veering toward a more dispassionate, utilitarian take. That’s not to say that foreign languages make us less moral — just that they make us a different kind of moral.
And then the part where, over time, historically, the language of morality can also shift dramatically. And then the part where each of us as individuals can encounter personal experiences so different that "good" and "bad" revolve around ever more problematic exchanges of language.

Thus, for philosophers, the invention of deontology. The belief that, say, ethicists, if they think, really, really hard enough, they might become the next Immanuel Kant.
Advocate
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by Advocate »

>Here, the distinction I make is between the either/or world encompassed in the laws of nature, mathematics, the empirical world around us, the rules of logic etc., and the is/ought world where "interpretation" suffuses all moral and political "conflicting goods". Then the part where we go all the way out on the metaphysical limb and tackle such profoundly problematic enigmas as solipsism, determinism, sim worlds, dream worlds, Matrix conundrums.

Why would you go out on a limb? The truth is as solid as the trunk. No, solipsism isn't either true or useful. Yes, everything is deterministic (not determined as of by a mind). All known mechanisms by which the physical universe may change are deterministic. There is no reason to believe an alternate universe of any kind is even possible, much less actual. Our external experience is stable and there is a rough consensus about it and that's what the word reality refers to, not some esoteric hypothetical ultimate future certainty about Actuality.

>Whose rendition of an enlightened wisdom? Whose story ought to prevail? Given what sets of circumstances? And, for me, postmodernists like modernists like premodernists are left with the task of closing the gap between what they believe is true subjectively "in their heads" and what they are able to demonstrate to others is true objectively for all rational men and women.

"Who gets to decide" is a problem for all ethical ideologies. The kernel of wisdom to be gleaned is that a philosophy without a reasoned method for making that determination is incomplete. But they need not be complete to be true, and that can be known with reasonable certainty. The truth is only one thing and all reasonable people approach it by way of Bayesian reasoning. Consensus isn't truth but it can be trusted on matters of fact. The trick is when people without an adequate epistemology talk about facts, truth, or reality which is no more than the burbling of goldfish

>And indeed as both William Shakespeare and George Harrison once surmised, "all things must pass"

The physical laws of the universe never have and we have no reason to believe they ever will. There are exactly zero cases of them changing. Likewise the laws of logic, which are functional equivalent - that which always replicate.

>Then the part where each of us come up with our own "story" to grapple with [i]that[/i]

A story is a perspective version of the truth. The validity of a story can be known through it's coherence, with logic, with itself, and with scientific consensus. All stores are not equal, but all true stories are compatible.

>Me? I'm still rooted to the subjective assumption that my own existence is essentially meaningless and purposeless? And then one day I will tumble over into the abyss that is oblivion...nothingness.

That's the wrong essence. The essence of you is not your physical substrate but how you feel about it - the spiritual (no woo), opinions, prioities, preferences in your mind. The meaning of life is that everyone has to choose the answer to that question for themselves. If you have no meaning, you haven't chosen one yet.

>Unless of course I'm wrong?

>And how could I possibly know the answer to that? Any more than the postmodernists among us can.

You can know that as you can know anything, by the value of evidence. Absolute certainty is never available. Knowledge is justified belief sufficient for a specific use; to accept a fact or take an action. It's not rocket science and everything the postmodernists are bringing up was already understood Before the enlightenment.
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by iambiguous »

THE GREAT AMPUTATION: LANGUAGE IN THE POSTMODERN ERA
October 23, 2018 By Ewa Thompson
In the 1960s, when people of my generation were entering college programs in humanities and names such as Albert Camus and T. S. Eliot were household words, I recall eagerly paging through literary magazines to see what new works these and other authors had produced and what comments about them had been made. In the second decade of the twenty-first century, I am unable to answer the question “Who is your favorite author of fiction of the past decade?” This is partly due to the fading of the novel (replaced by movies and television), but also partly to the fact that belles-lettres have lost much of their flavor. They have ceased to bring excitement.

Words are losing their power to convince, console, and elicit joy. There are many good novels written and reviewed, and those interested in science fiction or detective stories in particular have much to choose from. But there is no Faulkner, no Dostoevsky, not even someone close to Camus. What did these authors have that is missing in contemporary prose? Why doesn’t it fire us up? Such questions prompted my reflections on language presented below.
Of course, given the way language works in our postmodern age, these very words themselves will be reacted to differently from the various conflicting perspectives of people for whom the author's experiences may either be deeply felt in turn or seem utterly unintelligible.

The crucial question then being that in the age before language was "deconstructed" was it possible to create a language that would come closest to encompassing how reasonable people ought to react to the fact that the New York Times Best Seller list is now invariably a literary wasteland?

Is it really television and movies [and now] the internet that is largely responsible for that? Or, instead, is it truer that what we take out of language will revolve first and foremost around what we put into it...ourselves. And the postmodern "self" will tend to revolve less around great literature and more around pop culture, consumerism and celebrity?

In other words, over time historically and across the globe culturally, things -- memes/values/institutions -- change. People change along with them. But each new generation, by and large, is able to obviate this by thinking that their own generation really does "get" the way the world works.

And that the language they use to encompass it gets it too.

All of this explains the proliferation of both God and No God objectivists around the globe. The more language splinters us, the more the objectivists need to convince themselves that their own language actually does, in fact, reflect the One True Path to rationality and virtue.
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by iambiguous »

THE GREAT AMPUTATION: LANGUAGE IN THE POSTMODERN ERA
October 23, 2018 By Ewa Thompson
In 2013, in a conversation recorded in the New York Times, David Brooks and Gail Collins exchanged observations about old age and retirement. Brooks asked, “Gail . . . have you started thinking about what sort of public image you want to project [italics mine] as you prepare to shake off this mortal coil?”

Who said that in our time politicians and celebrities play themselves rather than being themselves in the public square? What matters is not what a person is but rather what pose he or she assumes in public.
The persona syndrome. We all probably employ one to one degree or another. There's who we think we are. And then there's calculating the reaction of others if we interact with them without pretending to be someone else. The games we play, the masks we wear when we shift from one set of circumstances to another. Or when we are around different people. Indeed, if you watch enough true crime docs the bottom line seems rather bleak: how...over and over again...those that we think we know best, we do not really know at all. Sometimes with deadly consequences. Over and again someone will insist that their friend or brother or father or cousin could "never do something like that". They'll tell the detective, "I know them."

Politicians are just more notorious in this regard because they have to be. With constituents voting them into office all up and down the political spectrum, it's important to shape-shift in order to please as many or displease as few of them as possible.
Is there a private life where one does not “prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet?” It appears not—from the conversation’s tone one gathers that private time is spent selecting the costume and trying it on. And this is how it should be, the conversation implies. The most influential newspaper in the United States encourages its readers to live in the world of appearances.
Here, however, each of us will react to others in different ways. For some, adopting a persona is like breathing, while for others it might be unimaginable. It's just that in our postmodern age there are simply more contexts in which acting out a persona may be the only option. Molding and manipulating our language to the "occasion". It's the difference between living in a modern metropolis and living in, say, an Amish community. Although even there one suspects the more the modern world seeps in, the more likely a persona may seem "reasonable".

And then, of course, those like me. I don't have this "real me" to fall back on even in "the privacy of my own home". At least not in regard to "how I really feel" about human interactions in the is/ought world.

https://ilovephilosophy.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=175006
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Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by iambiguous »

More Than Words: How Language Affects The Way We Think
by Marielle Zagada
One of the greatest abilities humans have is this — Language.

For so long, people have treated words as mere labels for objects, and languages as different ways to string words together to convey thoughts, feelings, and concepts. But language is more than that. Because of it, we can exchange complex thoughts and ideas with one another, whether it be spoken aloud or written in ink. It’s also through language that we’re able to trigger emotions, imagination, and action.
That's where the confusion can set in. Because there are so many words that do in fact describe many things objectively, it is easy enough for some to forget that there are, as well, any number of complex human interactions that cannot be encompassed without at least some measure of uncertainty, ambiguity, confusion and the like. In other words, human relationships that are basically encompassed only in a "world of words".
Now, of course, there’s no single language spoken around the world. There are more than 7,000 that exist today! And all these languages differ from one another in all kinds of ways; they all have different sounds, vocabularies, and structures.
Of course, of far greater importance, in my view, is the fact that even among those who speak the very same language there are endless conflicts regarding the meaning, the significance, the correctness, etc., of the words chosen to convey and to encompass the very same things. You'd think that after a while it might begin to dawn on us all that there are clearly language limitations in regard to particular kinds of human communication. But, instead, many simply insist that there is always only one truth to be had. Their own. They make no distinction at all between the either/or world and the is/ought world. Most through God, though others through one or another secular "ism".
This, now, begs the question: Does language influence the way we think? Many have suggested that it does! It widens our perspective, deepens our knowledge, and changes the way we perceive the world. But how is that?
What kind of a question is that? Of course the language we come to acquire influences how we think. After all, we first come to acquire a language as children. And, again, while some words are used by everyone to convey the meaning both of things and the relationships between things clearly and with little or no contention, other communication breaks down time after time after time.

And that is either because there is an objective truth to be had once we do learn how to communicate it or because there are in fact limitations beyond which language itself simply cannot convey an objective truth.

And here much to the dismay of any number of "serious philosophers", I request a context.

https://ilovephilosophy.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=175006
iambiguous
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Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2010 10:23 pm

Re: the language of postmodernism

Post by iambiguous »

More Than Words: How Language Affects The Way We Think
by Marielle Zagada
Language and culture go together

Language isn’t just a way to communicate, it’s a component of culture that makes it unique and specific. When language and culture are discussed, the phrase “language is culture and culture is language” is often mentioned because the two are always intertwined. This means that the language you speak reflects what your values and beliefs are.
Right, but that's where philosophy comes in, isn't it? Philosophy is interested in examining all of the same sets of circumstances that those from different cultures react to in [at times] very different ways. Taking that [and the historical evolution of human behaviors] into account in order [for some[ to arrive at the actual deontological obligation of all who wish to be thought of as rational and virtuous men and women.

On the other hand, "in reality" how's that going for us?

Back to language applicable in all cultures and language that, depending on the culture you were born and raised in, may or may not be in sync.

Thus...
The language you speak reflects what your values and beliefs are.
And, in my view, what your values and beliefs are is embedded in the words that you are taught as a child to connect to the particular world you grow up in. Then those like Plato and Aristotle and Descartes and Kant and others who make an attempt to transcend the existential muddle of all the vast and varied lives we live and propose what they construe to be the embodiment of "wisdom". Though, in their case, that involves one or another rendition of God.
According to anthropological linguist Daniel Everett, language can be considered a cultural tool to relate a community’s values and ideals and is shaped and molded by these residents over time.
Yes, and that worked particular well when the language used to convey this was contained and sustained in a village or a hamlet or a small community where everyone had a place and everyone was expected to stay in their place.

But: how about the role that language plays today given...the Internet? Language in the modern world where many, many different cultures come into contact using words to convey many, many conflicting value judgments.

Then the points that I raise about the use of language given the language I use in this thread: https://www.ilovephilosophy.com/viewtop ... 1&t=176529
For example, looking at the many idioms the Chinese culture has on family, you can definitely see how much they value that relationship. Another is with a unique Korean word “nunchi” (meaning eye-measure) that has no English translation. This word relates to the Korean belief in gauging how people are thinking and feeling in order to create connection, trust, and harmony.
And, of course, on and on and on and on. Culture by culture by culture. Why their culture and not ours? Is there one culture who comes closest to "wisdom" than others?

Given a particular context?

https://ilovephilosophy.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=175006
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