Week 2 Slides LIN200 2012

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Unformatted text preview: We have the same word for falling snow, snow on the ground, snow packed hard like ice, slushy snow, wind ­driven flying snow – whatever the situa/on may be. To an eskimo, this all ­inclusive word would be almost unthinkable; he would say that falling snow, slushy snow, and so on, are sensuously and opera/onally different, different things to contend with; uses different words for them and for other kinds of snow.” 15 Eskimo words for snow •  Pinker on Eskimo words for snow: •  English is actually no different from eskimo in this respect! English has lots of terms for snow, too: snow, sleet, slush, blizzard, avalanche, hail, hardpack, powder, flurry, dus7ng. •  Even if Eskimo did have more terms for snow than English, one should say: so what? 16 Eskimo words for snow •  Geoffrey Pullum on Eskimo words for snow: •  “Imagine reading: ‘It is quite obvious that in the culture of printers….fonts are of great enough importance to split up the conceptual sphere that corresponds to one word and one thought among non ­printers into several dis/nct classes....’ UOerly boring, even if true.” 17 •  For further cri/que of the Sapir ­ Whorf by Pinker, see chapter 3 of Pinker 1994. 18 Spa/al Terms •  An absolute frame of reference describes the posi/on of objects without regard for the speaker’s posi/on –  E.g. ‘Mississauga is we...
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This note was uploaded on 04/03/2012 for the course LINGUISTIC LIN200 taught by Professor Naominagy during the Spring '10 term at University of Toronto- Toronto.

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