Category Archives: Language

McDowell, “Mind and World” — Reason and Nature

In “Reason and Nature,” the fourth lecture that composes Mind and World, McDowell proposes “to start uncovering the presumably deep mental block that produces this uncomfortable situation,” namely, the anxious oscillation between the Myth of the Given and a Space of … Continue reading

Posted in Aristotle, Epistemology, Human nature, John McDowell, John O'Callaghan, Language, Mind and World, Reason, Space of Reasons | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Newman scoops Wittgenstein, Cavell, and Hauerwas

To make professions is to play with edged tools, unless we attend to what we are saying. Words have a meaning, whether we mean that meaning or not; and they are imputed to us in their real meaning, when our … Continue reading

Posted in Discipleship, John Henry Newman, Language, Meaning, Stanley Cavell, Stanley Hauerwas, Wittgenstein | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Language, Beauty, and Leadership

Jargon-laden, Latinized prose — the kind as rampant as kudzu in business, management, and general “leadership” writing — stultifies thought, obscures meaning, deadens feeling, and generally makes the world an uglier place. Christians worship a beautiful God, a God whose … Continue reading

Posted in Language, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

“Does Your Language Shape How You Think?”

So asks Guy Deutscher in a Times Magazine article last year: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/29/magazine/29language-t.html The short answer: Yes! A couple of instances from my own experience of language: 1. Articles: Most languages have them; Latin does not, and this means that in … Continue reading

Posted in Arianism, Greek, Hebrew, Language, Latin, Translation, Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

Augustine on non-linguistic thought

“Ce langage est celui qu’ont adopté plusieurs auteurs latins bien recommandables; et ils l’ont employé , n’en trouvant pas de meilleur pour exprimer par la parole ce qu’ils comprenaient sans le secours de la parole.” —De Trin. V.9.10 The Latin … Continue reading

Posted in Augustine, Language, Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

Linguistic confusion

Another way of stating the same basic point: the Arians, in arguing that “unbegotten” was a predicate of God the Father according to substance, were confused about a basic point of grammar: to predicate “not-X” of Y is not in … Continue reading

Posted in Arianism, Augustine, Holy Trinity, Language, Predication, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Augustine defines God by elimination

From the opening of Bk. 5 of De. Trin.: Concevons Dieu, autant que nous le pourrons, comme étant bon sans aucun attribut de bonté, grand sans aucun degré de grandeur, créateur sans aucun besoin des êtres, immense sans aucune dépendance … Continue reading

Posted in Augustine, Language, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment