[Milton-L] Word and Thing

Duran, Angelica A duran0 at purdue.edu
Thu Oct 10 19:15:59 EDT 2013


I am not in my office where I have T. Patrick Burke's The World's Major Religions: An Introduction with Texts (2nd ed., 2004), but I do recall that its "Part II: The Religions of Chinese Origin" nicely congealed matters for me regarding a tendency towards mistrust of written and oral texts, and at the core of either words or interpretations of words. I cannot remember if it has useful bibliographies at the end of each chapter. Best of luck.

Adios,
Angelica Duran
Associate Professor, English and Comparative Literature
Director, Religious Studies (2009-2013)
Purdue University, 500 Oval Drive - Heavilon Hall
West Lafayette, Indiana 47907 U.S.A.
<duran0 at purdue.edu>

From: Horace Jeffery Hodges <horacejeffery at gmail.com<mailto:horacejeffery at gmail.com>>
Reply-To: John Milton Discussion List <milton-l at lists.richmond.edu<mailto:milton-l at lists.richmond.edu>>
Date: Thursday, October 10, 2013 7:02 PM
To: John Milton Discussion List <milton-l at lists.richmond.edu<mailto:milton-l at lists.richmond.edu>>
Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Word and Thing

To Carol's point, I would add that the crucial thing to note is this:

"That is, things in actual fact should be made to accord with the implication attached to them by names."

In short, the rectification was of things, not words. Words are prescriptive. This fits with the general Confucian focus on reforming society to fit Confucian teachings.

Jeffery Hodges

Ewha Womans University
Seoul, South Korea

Novella: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00E18KW0K (The Bottomless Bottle of Beer)


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Bottomless-Bottle-of-Beer/204064649770035 (The Bottomless Bottle of Beer)

Blog: http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/ (Gypsy Scholar)


Doctoral Thesis: "Food as Synecdoche in the Gospel of John and Gnostic Texts"


Ph.D., History, U.C. Berkeley
M.A., History of Science, U.C. Berkeley
B.A., English Language and Literature, Baylor University


Home Address:


Dr. Sun-Ae Hwang and Dr. Horace Jeffery Hodges
Gunyoung Apt. 102-204
Sangbong-dong 1
Jungnang-gu
Seoul 131-771
South Korea


On Thu, Oct 10, 2013 at 11:49 PM, cbartonphd1 <cbartonphd1 at verizon.net<mailto:cbartonphd1 at verizon.net>> wrote:
Google it, Michael; essentially it meant that the name should be in harmony with the person or thing. See, for example,  www.cultural-china.com/chinaWH/html/en/43History878.html<http://www.cultural-china.com/chinaWH/html/en/43History878.html> .

Best to all,

Carol Barton


Sent from my Galaxy S®III



-------- Original message --------
From: "J. Michael Gillum" <mgillum at ret.unca.edu<mailto:mgillum at ret.unca.edu>>
Date: 10/10/2013 10:09 AM (GMT-05:00)
To: John Milton Discussion List <milton-l at lists.richmond.edu<mailto:milton-l at lists.richmond.edu>>
Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Word and Thing


I had thought what Sprat and those guys wanted was only one word for each kind of thing (or matter, action, property, process)--a scientific vocabulary free of ambiguity and literary ornament. I don't think it had any connection with the idea of an Adamic language of essences--not that words can be intrinsically right, just that each word should have one clear agreed-upon meaning.

A sidebar--does anyone know what the Confucians meant by "rectification of names"?




On Wed, Oct 9, 2013 at 4:16 PM, Horace Jeffery Hodges <horacejeffery at gmail.com<mailto:horacejeffery at gmail.com>> wrote:
Prof. Martin Kuester sent me a copy of his book Milton's Prudent Ambiguities, which I read and briefly blogged upon:

http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.kr/2013/10/professor-dr-martin-kuester-miltons.html

Reading it led me to an expression of something that has puzzled me:

I am especially interested in . . . what the seventeenth-century reformers of language meant by a direct correspondence between word and thing. (I note in passing that the Hebrew term davar means both "word" and "thing.") By "thing," did they mean something like a material object? Or rather anything at all? Whatever was meant, would the word for a thing be a name, i.e., a noun? I find this puzzling. While nouns might constitute the largest category among the parts of speech, they are a minority in most sentences. The previous sentence, for example, has only six nouns out of nineteen words -- and none of them, for that matter, naming material objects. Furthermore, words in a sentence have logical and grammatical relations to each other, a feature ignored by the reformers' emphasis upon the word-thing correspondence.

I ask these questions in ignorance . . .

Jeffery Hodges

PS Prof. Kuester's book is available at Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/Miltons-Prudent-Ambiguities-Words-Poetry/dp/0761845283

Ewha Womans University
Seoul, South Korea

Novella: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00E18KW0K (The Bottomless Bottle of Beer)


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Bottomless-Bottle-of-Beer/204064649770035 (The Bottomless Bottle of Beer)

Blog: http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/ (Gypsy Scholar)


Doctoral Thesis: "Food as Synecdoche in the Gospel of John and Gnostic Texts"


Ph.D., History, U.C. Berkeley
M.A., History of Science, U.C. Berkeley
B.A., English Language and Literature, Baylor University


Home Address:


Dr. Sun-Ae Hwang and Dr. Horace Jeffery Hodges
Gunyoung Apt. 102-204
Sangbong-dong 1
Jungnang-gu
Seoul 131-771
South Korea

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