Metaphysics

Download Becoming Human: The Development of Language, Self, and by J. Canfield PDF

By J. Canfield

This e-book is a philosophical exam of the levels in our trip from hominid to human. facing the character and starting place of language, self-consciousness, and the spiritual excellent of a go back to Eden, it has a philosophical anthropology technique. It presents an account of our position in nature in step with either empiricism and mysticism.

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Additional resources for Becoming Human: The Development of Language, Self, and Self-Consciousness

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I give him a slip marked ‘five red apples’. —It is in this and similar ways that one operates with words (PI, §1). This use of words is similar to that of the slab/beam case in that both function as requests. The difference is that words in the grocery example have different types of function inside the practice. 2 One use of the concept, perhaps the original one, was applied to artifacts and machines. Biologists apply it, by analogical extension, to animals and plants. Wittgenstein further extends its use to the case of words that play a role in language-games (see, for example PI, §556).

That is, language arises out of certain actions and reactions that in turn are not based on ratiocination but occur naturally, instinctively. Wittgenstein writes, The origin and the primitive form of the language-game is a reaction: only from this can more complicated forms develop. 2 What deeds or ur-level acts is he talking about? 3 We are animals who naturally behave in that way. Wittgenstein’s view that language is rooted in such naturally occurring or biologically based action patterns gets expressed most clearly in the essay “Cause and Effect: Intuitive Awareness,” some passages of which I have referred to just above.

Custom Underlying the threefold classification of proto language-game, gesture, and simple language-game is the idea that to use or employ a word—to utter it in the stream of daily life, and to be understood—is to participate in some or another language-game, each of which constitutes a separate custom. Wittgenstein makes the point explicitly: “To obey a rule, to make a report, to give an order, to play a game of chess, are customs (uses, institutions)” (PI, §99). ” But the question naturally arises: what is a custom?

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