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TOK Ezra Pound

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Evaluate Ezra Pound's claim that "no single language is capable of expressing all forms and degrees of human comprehension". Language is the systematic means of communicating ideas or feelings by the use of conventionalized signs, sounds, gestures, or marks having understood meanings.[1] (salereo definitions) Language allows us to express ourselves in such a way that other people can understand us. However, there are many limitations on how far it can actually be used in order for us to be able to communicate our thoughts and emotions to other people exactly as we understand or feel it. For this reason Language can be considered one of the most important "tools" of communication in the world. In this essay, I shall make a critical analysis about the statement above, discussing its claims and alternative perspectives. Firstly I will define language using two opposing perspectives, I will continue by analyzing these definitions in conjunction with the question. Looking at language as a means of expression and secondly the power of thought verses the act of communication. Finally I will examine the functions of language and how live in. To understand the claim "no single language is capable of expressing all forms and degrees of human comprehension" we must first understand what language is. ...read more.


and interaction between the speaker, hearer and the environment. These problems convert language into an unreliable method of communication. To solve these problems, we have to rely on our other communication means. Although these problems may affect us in many aspects, they help us to prove the fact that we are not completely dependant on language to "express all forms human comprehension". Our surroundings reflect our language. That is why, the statement "The Limits of my language are the limits of my world" is partially true. A lot of our understanding and communication has a connection with our background - Our world can be represented by our language. People speak differently (accents, various word meanings and vocabularies) depending on their culture, occupation and surrounding. i.e. Different cultures place importance on various parts of language that are essential to survival and necessary to understand one's surroundings. The eskimo's have a hundred words for snow, each one defining a slightly different variety. Such diversity in definition is not necessary on a large dessert island, such as Australia. I can fairly claim that if I was to enter the inuit world I would struggle to grasp the concept of hundreds of different types of snow. ...read more.


In conclusion it is impossible to imagine a rational being, or a civilized society, without implying the use of language. Even within the business management area, managers are discovering that an absence of effective communication between employers and staff lead to trouble and lack of confidence. "No society can plan ahead to gather food, to undertake public words, or to prepare for an afterlife without the capacity for expressing a future tense. Nor can it prohibit or encourage behavior which it is unable to name. Who is permitted to marry whom in any society is determined by blood relationships or by membership in various clans and castes - rules which can only be transmitted by language." Therefore, the statement "the limits of my language are the limits of my world" is only partially true. Actually, the correct statement should read, "the limits of my language are affected by the limits of my world." This would agree with all points presented in this essay, being much more reasonable. In any case, regardless of the conclusions taken, the importance of language can also be highlighted by taking into account what language makes possible. The capacity to communicate knowledge, to have it questioned, corrected and shared by others, seems to be a peculiarly human capacity that can broaden all of our horizons. ...read more.

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