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Re: Re: Re: Re: don't { use Perl }

by mdillon (Priest)
on Jun 10, 2002 at 17:57 UTC ( #173240=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Re: Re: Re: don't { use Perl }
in thread don't { use Perl }

You're wrong about the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, at least inasmuch as you imply that it is so generally considered disproved. This is still an active area of debate and experimental research in some lingustic circles (specifically, those focusing on "embodied" cognitive linguistics, a.k.a. "West coast" cog. ling.), cf. Language and Thought (D. Slobin).

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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: don't { use Perl }
by Anonymous Monk on Jun 10, 2002 at 19:00 UTC
    Perhaps I was a little broad with my pen. The SW hypothesis is generally considered refuted in its strong form. Its weak form continues to be investigated and does raise interesting questions in the cognitive sciences. But the weak form is really nothing at all like the strong form of the hypothesis, the weak form merely posits an interaction between language and thought, the strong form asserts that language is a limiting factor in the interaction.
      Forgive what could be a stupid question.

      If language and thought interact (by which I mean affect each other)...

      And language is inherently less flexible than thought (as evidenced by all languages being contained within all thought)

      Then wouldn't language be the limiting factor by definition? Not necessarily indicating that it must limit thought, but that in a system involving language and thought, language will always have fewer possible effects on thought than thought can have on language?

      You are what you think.

        Exactly. And not a stupid question by any means. Your final sentence sums it up (though I think you have the premises in reverse). If language must have fewer effects on thought than vica versa, language is neither the limiting factor on thought, nor even a limiting factor on thought. Wittgenstein did get some things wrong.

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