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In terms of knowledge, when we name things what is won and what is lost?

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Bárbara Bodelón Word count: 1426 “In terms of knowledge, when we name things what is won and what is lost?” To introduce the motion of this piece of writing is necessary making clear some basic terms such as “language”, this corresponding to one of the ways of knowledge, bound to sounds or symbols that stand for things or ideas. We think, using the symbols of language as tools for thought. The relationship of symbols with its meaning is a matter of agreed connection. Language is subdivided into verbal (spoken and written) and non-verbal (kinesics and proxemics) language[1]. Below I will play only verbal language and will explain in detail what is won and what is lost when we name things. When we name things we automatically create taxonomy. This term means we are making a classification, that permits us inventory, identify, group, distinguish and structure knowledge. Language permits associating ideas and using symbolism in a meaningful way to open us boundless possibilities for thinking and communicating. We are able to connect our own lives (thoughts) with the lives of others in our language community thus create meaning socially. It also allows us such flexibility we may possibly generate utterances that no previous speaker of the language has ever used, since they are vast combinations within restrictions. The more vocabulary you have, then the more knowledge as well, and a more enriched view of the world, because you can understand a term better. ...read more.


Then we attempt not very successfully, to create accurate definitions to coverage our associations by using other words. So the more vocabulary (definitions) you have, the more precisely in order to use language entirely denotatively or give the exact right connotation. For instance it once happened to me that I texted my mother while she was at the supermarket, asking her to get me a yellow copybook. When she arrived home, and I saw what she had bought me, I was disappointed. The copybook wasn?t the bright yellow color that I was expecting, but instead it was of mustard yellow. In this case my mom and I knew the denotation of the word ?yellow?, but the connotations we each grant to the word differ. When I picture the color yellow immediately it came to my head a bright rubber duckling kind of yellow. My mum instead seemed to imagine a mustard jar. It is improbable that we will carry the same associations even when the word stands for a concrete thing. A good exemplification of the failures in naming things is the lack of emotion or the incorrect tone you may transmit by using words while chatting, texting, writing or e-mailing. The truth is that sometimes when you are communicating through these types of media, when you use certain words, your receptor might assume wrongly what you where actually trying to say, because words are simply not enough. ...read more.


In my opinion the name given changes its essence because the connotation changes. One term is related to good things and the other to bad. We might praise language?s suggestive character; or complain its ambiguity. The truth is that language is like poetry, it can gather personal associations which add to its meaning for you individually. Sometimes words can be used as images with suggestive power (metaphors or irony for example). It is difficult to establish whether naming things is a good thing or a bad thing, since by tagging things with a name we gain and we lose plenty, in an almost equitable way. In my opinion it is nor good or bad just necessary in order to communicate. After reflecting about this topic I have clarified some doubts regarding the motion, being able to formulate and relate personal examples of my daily life, and I have come up with new queries. How does a new name aggregate to the universal dictionary, being this new term linked to a specific meaning? Is there a kind of institution that decides when to invent a new name to supply a word deficiency? Can this name be even invented? Who invents later a translation of this new term to every language? Many questions seem to emerge easily around this matter, and certainly leaves plenty more to talk about. ________________ [1] Term ?language? took from Theory of knowledge course companion book. ...read more.

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