Sunday, February 10, 2008

Theory and meaning

"... meaning is a relationship, in every case: a difference, rather than a rupture or disruption."

"Theory in the humanities is often a sort of therapy: something we turn to when we find ourselves at odds with where we are or somehow out of touch with immediate reality. [...] Theory in this sense is a substitute for time - a splint and bandage for the fractured limbs of history. Where time is short, theory abounds."

"Some meanings - if that is the right name for them - are highly individual; some are peculiar to certain communities and cultures; but there is a rich fund of meanings shared by the whole species, and a fund of meanings richer yet that is the common property not of the species but of the planet. Those are among the meanings we draw on, and the meanings language draws on, whenever we tell stories, say hello, carve masks and totem poles, or read and write literary texts."

- Robert Bringhurst, as below

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