Wittgenstein may have named “language
games”, but that name is NOT an explanation of the games. From what
I read, he never got around to bothering with defining language games, just by
categorizing them as something to explain what he didn’t know, sort of
like ether in the 19th century. I could name it “language
puzzles” or “communication models” or “collaborative
assertions” which would be just as informative. So Wittgenstein doesn’t
answer the question – he just pushes it off. I think you may need
to question your position on this one.
The Freudians have a well reviewed theoretical
basis for their construal which is consistent with what we know of evolution,
both for human and animal. They have experimental evidence which they are
also able to construe as supporting the Freudian tenets of sexual reproduction,
evolution, and all the economic interactions among mother, father, offspring,
relatives and non relatives.
Further, the evidence from tribal
societies is that sexual processes guide the behavior of primitive peoples –
not ALL of it, but much of the behavior is sexually motivated whether
consciously or unconsciously. Tribes in the Amazon which have seldom if
ever seen a civilized visitor are known to use tribal warfare to kill males and
enslave females – clearly that is done for sexual reasons, and leads to offspring
of the conquering men and the enslaved women, residing with the conquerors out
of fear and force.
But sexual selection is only one explanatory
theoretical framework. There are many others, all motivated by
evolutionary frameworks, such as kinship, charity to less fortunate (but
genetically similar) people, even lying and cheating which have their own
detection mechanisms in the human brain.
So to dodge the question by blaming it on
Wittgenstein doesn’t provide ANY answer to the question. It just
names the unknown and refuses to go deeper into the issues necessary to
understand language at some level of practical automation.
All word senses develop from the situations in which
they are used.
That's the point of Wittgenstein's later philosophy
about language games.
Word interpretations are made by the INDIVIDUAL
who is IN THE SITUATION, not by the SITUATION, which is an abstraction of a
much more detailed and specific reality. The words are necessarily interpreted
subjectively; that is the only way an individual CAN interpret utterances,
writings, signs, symbols or actions – through his own direct experience throughout
his lifetime development.
In my opinion, there is no abstract
language; there is only what you have designated in a previous email as “rhetoric”.
ALL language is messaging from one person to at least one other person, perhaps
even the same person reasoning with himself over past experience and current
When “logic” is defined to be
orthogonal from “rhetoric” based on that single predicate, I find
the definition to be unsatisfactory. Rhetoric is always at play in
language, and never goes away to leave some abstraction called logic. The
purposes of language include informing, convincing, explaining, deduction,
induction, and “proof by emphatic assertion.” Rhetoric is
embedded in every scientific paper, in every theorem and proof, in every
explanation that passes as science.
Please give more thought to your position
on this. I think it is important for the future of automating linguistic competence.
Our software should discuss our needs and then find a way to fill or
ameliorate them. To do so requires, IMHO, logic embedded into
Rich AT EnglishLogicKernel DOT com
9 4 9 \ 5 2 5 - 5 7 1 2
[mailto:ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: Friday, June 10, 2011 10:36
Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Run,
put, and set
comments you quoted are reasonable, but the point remains that those words have
a very large number of senses.
this kind of evidence from dedicated practitioners, mustn't we
> conclude that Run, Put and Set are also interpreted subjectively, and
> situationally, rather than lexically?
senses develop from the situations in which they are used.
the point of Wittgenstein's later philosophy about language games.
meaning of a word or the multiple meanings arise from the multiple ways of
using the word in different situations for different purposes.