Salinas17 at aol.com
Salinas17 at aol.com
Fri Mar 17 20:41:05 UTC 2006
In a message dated 3/17/06 2:35:53 PM, mark at polymathix.com writes:
<< (Instance for, print in sentence this understand to fail would English of
speakers native few.) >>
Your example does not apply to what I wrote. What I wrote was that Grammar
can be perfectly correct and still make no sense. Your example is about
English syntax, not sense.
In response, I only can tenderly carmelize the teacher to whom you ventilated
in the left column, weedlessly uncondensed.
That's fine grammar but -- unless you are privileged to know something I
don't -- it makes absolutely no sense. One doesn't even have to raise observation
to the level of discourse to suspect that there was no intention to do
anything with this sentence but make it grammatical and that the words are random.
Grammar, naked and by itself, conveys little or no meaning at all, either to
oneself ("cognitively") or to others, pragmatically.
<<I think that hearers generally cause perceived language to make sense
almost at any cost, even when there may be no sense to be made of it from a more
privileged frame of reference (if you can identify a more privileged frame of
reference, that is).>>
Listeners will give speakers the benefit of the doubt, no doubt. And grammar
can give the impression of meaning, but we know that we can generate
grammatical sentences that objectively intend no meaning and convey no information in
terms of communication to others.
That tells us that grammar -- despite everything that you hear otherwise --
is not the core of language.
Grammar is like the shape of a common hammer. We can contemplate the shape
of a hammer all we like. But unless we get around to asking what it is for, it
will appear to hold many hidden mysteries and yield many different theories
to no point.
There are those of us who believe that language is most basically only
another partially evolved, partially developed tool (but one of immense processing
power) used by humans to affect their environment. And we have to regard any
structural approaches as being deficient -- UNLESS they take central account of
what that structure is aimed at.
More information about the Funknet