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1 minute reading

Language is a social consensus

Language is a social consensus Language is a social consensus
Source: Yosef Tovshteyn via Giphy
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Language is determined by social consensus. We agree that the sounds “win-dow” are the apertures in the house you can see through, and “pa-per” is what you hold in your hands when reading. The sounds, in and of themselves, mean nothing. We have agreed, society has agreed, that these sounds have meaning and we are inoculated with this code from birth, by hearing our parents, our siblings and our world speak. We are both nurtured and trapped in the nexus of meaning.

Our perceptions of reality as well are controlled by social consensus, and our ultimate limitations are defined by it. In subtle and profound ways that involve complete immersion in a cultural and linguistic atmosphere, we receive and pass on the codes and definitions of so-called reality. Artists stretch those limits, tyrants and madmen break them, everyone else ignores them by living inside them.

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