October 1, 2012
Words and Ideas
In class, when we were discussing John Locke's essay, we debated whether or not we think words or ideas come first. I think the class' consensus was that ideas come first and from them we create words. This got me thinking about the origins of language and how people connect words with ideas and meanings. I do agree with the class consensus that ideas come first and we then attach a word to them but I did wonder how these words came to be. I then considered that maybe words do come first and then preexisting ideas can be attached to them. Locke talks about words and language and their meanings in his essay. I gathered that Locke felt it was important that words and their meanings be connected and somewhat simple in their relation to each other. That is why I think that the discovery of words and ideas and how they connect to each other can happen simultaneously. Basically, it helps to have words similar in sound to the meanings that it represents therefor words and the ideas that represent them may happen at the same time as opposed to one happening before the other.