The Language of Letters

“I have only made this letter longer because I have not had the time to make it shorter.” (Letter 16, 1657)” Blaise Pascal, The Provincial Letters These past weeks as I considered language as a conduit for communication, I came across some old letters, cards and notes that I have kept over the years. I found…

Walking the Talk

“Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.” 1 Corinthians 13:1   In the hands of a wordsmith, language becomes the stuff of legend, holding within each word, each syllable the power for good or evil.  When the written word…

Engagement

“A wonderful fact to reflect upon, that every human creature is constituted to be that profound secret and mystery to every other.”  Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities   The most profound experience is to know, unequivocally, that your words have been understood and valued.  Whether there is mutual agreement is irrelevant; it is enough…

What Came Before Texting?

“Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.”  Frank Zappa Every generation claims bragging rights on innovative progress.  Credit for past accomplishments is duly noted, but since advancement is seen as increasing over time, the assumption gives the edge to the current age group. Nowhere is this more evident than in our sophisticated communication…

The Language of Mythology

“I wish life was not so short, he thought. Languages take such a time, and so do all the things one wants to know about.” J. R. R. Tolkien I consider J.R.R. Tolkien to be one of my favourite fiction authors ever since I first read “The Fellowship of the Rings” when I was 15…

The Language of Stereotypes

“Once you label me you negate me.” Søren Kierkegaard Most of us have an uncanny ability to stereotype. (Stereotype, incidentally, comes from the Greek word, “stereos,” meaning firm and “typos,” meaning impression.) We see people through a lens of personal experience, which allows us to categorize people quickly so as to make sense of our…