I tried to pick a single reading to concentrate on, but in the end, one thought kept circling me as the accumulation of all our reading up till now, and that is: “Language shapes our reality”. I’ve heard this phrase before, but I think I am now beginning to truly comprehend it in a way I never had before. First we have Locke discussing the failings and frailties of language and the debate of whether words or ideas came first. In class, this question was jokingly, but very aptly, compared to that of the “chicken or the egg”, a phrase which is also ingrained into our cultural lexicon as a well-worn idiom (or is it a metaphor). Now I question how that phrase was spawned and how we have adapted it to so many other situations. I think Locke was very right about use the word ‘frail’ to describe language. It’s like picking at a thread; the more you examine it, play with, the more it unravels.
If we look too closely at the model of language, does it collapse? By analyzing or ‘over-thinking’ the structure and function of words, do they lose their meaning, like repeating a word over, and over, and over? Is there a safe distance we can observe from? And, in looking too closely at words, how much are we understanding only what we to understand, like we question with Mischa the talking dog? How does our, individual, understanding of language, shape our reality.