TOK Journal Post #4

by Michael on September 10, 2018

Do the problems of language always limit the production of knowledge?

I think that language does limit the production of knowledge.┬áThe use of language is our way of verbally communicating with each other. Without it, we may struggle to express ideas and thoughts as well as how we do now, but that does not mean it is perfect. As there are thousands of words in the English language, it isn’t easy to craft the perfect sentence that everyone will interpret in the same way. In the English language, we constantly use metaphors and idioms in our speech, but this may limit the production of knowledge. Not everything we say is literal, so it easy to misinterpret what someone says as something else. An example is the idiom “beat around the bush”. Some people may not understand what this means, and may think that it literally means beating around a bush, which limits the production of knowledge.

One AOK where language is used quite differently is math. Math has its own language, and it’s universal in the way that everyone recognizes the same symbols and formulas that are used. If everyone in the world used the exact same mathematical language, there would be no knowledge that is limited. Formulas in math are just like sentences in language, but everyone will interpret a formula the same way, whereas a sentence can be interpreted in different ways.

I believe that language does limit the production of knowledge, as it’s such a vague concept that can’t be perfect.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Charlotte C. Nielsen December 6, 2018 at 12:59 pm

You need to give more specifics and examples when discussing these ideas in an Ifolio post. We spoke about a lot of different situations in which language can clarify or obfuscate. Bring these into your explanation.

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