Reflections cont'd (2)

Diane Frances Lesley-Neuman Diane.Lesley-neuman at
Thu Mar 23 00:13:10 UTC 2006

"Reality makes language intelligible.""Language makes reality intelligible."
How about Carol Fowler and Direct Realism?
Diane Lesley-Neuman, M. Ed.
Linguistics Department
Institute for Cognitive Science
University of Colorado at Boulder

Quoting Salinas17 at

> I wrote:
> <<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.>>
> In a message dated 3/17/06 7:56:12 PM, mark at writes:
> <<While that is presumably true in the context of a linguistics mailing list,
> I doubt there's much evidence of the same kind of phenomenon in the
> populations of mere mortals and their utterances that we purport to study. >>
> No doubt that it is an improbable sentence.  And it just happens to make no
> sense as well.  Maybe they are connected?
> This goes back to your suggestion about language making reality intelligible.
>  My point is it's more useful to see it the other way around.  That reality
> makes language intelligible.  And when reality doesn't check-off on a
> sentence
> like the one above, it will tend not to make sense and therefore tend not to
> be used.
> If you turn Chomsky on his head -- "Colourless green ideas sleep furiously"
> -- you may think what he proved was that language that makes no sense is not
> language.
> What does that suggest about "language models?"  It might suggests that any
> model of language that does not include the extra-linguistic effects of
> language is fundamentally inaccurate.
> Regards,
> Steve Long

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