The Meanings of Words

timer Asked: Nov 21st, 2015

Question description

PLEASE GOOGLE AND READ How Language Shapes Thought,” by Lera Boroditsky  AND “Mother Tongue” by Amy Tan

The readings from this week reflect complex relationships between individuals’ senses of self and the language(s) they speak, hear, and read. Many of the authors from the weekly readings repeatedly suggest that language is closely connected to culture and to history. Sometimes, when cultures and languages intersect, this intersection may present conflicts between an individual’s sense of self and his or her relationship to language.

Choose at least one reading from this week and reflect on the ambivalent connections to language, which may prove on one hand a source of power and on the other hand a cause of inner conflict. Explain, from your analysis of the assigned readings, why this relationship to language is so complex, and what this ambivalence means for the given author(s) in their everyday life. You may also wish to consider the fact that, while some of this week’s writers express discomfort with formal and academic English, they may also use that language to expresses themselves. Reflect on the extent to which you can or cannot relate to the author’s/authors’ thoughts and feelings about the English language and how your views of language may be related to your personal experiences.

Support your discussion with details from the text and close analysis of those details.  Organize the discussion around a thesis statement about the significance of language and/or names to individuals and/or culture.

Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length. Support your claims with examples from required material(s) and/or other scholarly resources, and properly cite any references.

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