Language and 'Self-Expression' (2)

A. Katz amnfn at
Tue May 1 04:55:36 UTC 2007

The question is, when we correct our own speech directed at oursleves or
our dog, is it always just a question of "internalizing collective
reproach"? Sometimes, couldn't it be just a question of realizing we made
a mistake in calculation?

Clearly, there is a kind of self-editing that involves putting ourselves
in a hearer's place and trying to see if he would understand our message
or be offended by its form. Correcting an "ain't" to "isn't" or putting
something in subjunctive instead of imperative fall into that type of
correction, as does substituting politically correct jargon
for a more archaic term that is undergoing pejorization (say,
"elders" instead of "the old".)

But if we find we negated the wrong clause or used a word that doesn't at
all mean what we intended, isn't that type of self-correction just a
question of clarifying our own thoughts? In that case, it would be the
message we are correcting, without regard to the approval or disapproval
of an internalized hearer.


Dr. Aya Katz, Inverted-A, Inc, P.O. Box 267, Licking, MO
65542 USA
(417) 457-6652 (573) 247-0055

On Mon, 30 Apr 2007, Paul Hopper wrote:

> Fascinating! I've even caught myself correcting speech errors when I talk to
> my dog.
> My speech errors, that is.
> All this reminds me of David Bloor's definition of conscience: "the
>internalized image of collective reproach." (I'm afraid I don't have a
>reference for this. Probably his 'Knowledge and Social Imagery.')) We're
>constrained by norms even when no one is listening.
> - Paul
> > Yes, there is research on slips of the tongue in inner speech. They show
> > the same patterns as slips in audible speech. Done by Peter Reich, or by
> > someone he knows -- I'll copy him on this message. I too have noticed
> > speech errors in my inner speech.
> >
> > All best,   - Syd Lamb
> >
> > On Mon, 30 Apr 2007, Johanna Rubba wrote:
> >
> >>
> >> As to "talking to oneself", it certainly does involve speech. I have
> >> made speech errors while talking to myself (not out loud -- solely in my
> >> head). There is probably research somewhere that shows activation in the
> >> motor cortex and perhaps even the speech muscles that sometimes
> >> accompanies talking to oneself -- maybe someone on the list knows this
> >> for a fact. I believe I have read or heard something to that effect
> >> regarding people who subvocalize when they read.
> >>
> >> I posted a message about language and communication on the Pirahã
> >> thread, but it never appeared. I wonder if I sent it only to a single
> >> address. If you received a message, could you send it back to me to
> >> post, or post it for me?
> >>
> >> Thanks!
> >>
> >> Dr. Johanna Rubba, Associate Professor, Linguistics Linguistics Minor
> >> Advisor English Department California Polytechnic State University, San
> >> Luis Obispo E-mail: jrubba at Tel.: 805.756.2184 Dept. Ofc. Tel.:
> >> 805.756.2596 Dept. Fax: 805.756.6374 URL:
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >
> >
> > Sydney M. Lamb Linguistics and Cognitive
> > Sciences Rice University, Houston, TX
> >
> >

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