In of Pinker’s concluding remarks on language

In an excerpt titled Words Don’t Mean What They Mean, from his book, The Stuff of Thought, Steven Pinker elaborate show words have different meanings in various contexts. This paper explores the meaning of Pinker’s concluding remarks on language from the article.Pinker says, “Language is a window into human nature, but it is also a fistula, an open wound through which we’re exposed to an infectious world” (Pinker p.3). He tries to reveal language as having both advantages and disadvantages. Notably, language is a window into human nature since it allows human beings to communicate with each other. Language reflects the human nature since men are known to say what they do not mean to hide true intention. However, language is an open wound since once one has said something; it is not possible to take it backhence the impact of something bad remains. Notably, when there is an open wound, it means the damage is already there. Language can be considered an open wound since it expresses our emotions. Notably, body language and sign language can allow people to read our emotions even without uttering a word. Similarly, language is an open wound since people say things that could hurt and cause controversy. Pinker says that he is not surprised “that we sheathe our words in politeness and innuendo and other forms of doublespeak” (Pinker p.3). I think he means that we use language to achieve what we want by trying to please other people even when we have no intention of pleasing but rather we only want to appear good and fulfill our needs. Therefore, we do not mean what we say but only want to suit the occasion. For example, the use of sexual come-ons such as “Would you like to come up and see my etchings?” (Pinker p.1). I think I am convinced that use of innuendos is no surprise since sometimes I too find it hard to speak plainly and would rather use this approach to avoid hurting others or appearing too suggestive.  Work CitedPinker, Steven. “Words Don’t Mean What They Mean”. Time, 6 Sep. 2007, pp. 1-3. 


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