Wednesday, October 29, 2008

More about Language

In class over the past couple weeks we've been having some discussions about how we use language. I presented some ideas given by George Lakoff in "The Political Mind" and then this week we had two fantastic presentations about the concept of poverty and how we think about poverty and wealth. A graduate student of mine is interested in some of this linguistic analysis of issues (social linguistics), and she has made a list of books available in the UIS library she is recommending.

I think a good social worker will typically be interested in language whether they are doing macro or micro work. The therapist or social worker who helps individuals gains something by having a keen sense of the meaning of words that a client is using. If you ask yourself why a client used a particular word you can often guess at some answers that may reveal more about the client's inner state. And of course, in macro practice, we know that how we frame an issue and how we talk about an issue will also shape how we feel about it, and what sort of solutions will appeal to us.

Here are the books the graduate student suggested with the call numbers (they're on the fourth floor of Brookens):

Artful mind: cognitive science and the riddle of human creativity (2006).
edited by Mark Turner. N71 .A762 2006

Meaning and mental representations (1988).
edited by Umberto Eco, Marco Santambrogio, & Patrizia Violi. P325 .M381988

Metaphors we live by (1980).
George Lakoff and Mark Johnson. P106 .L235

Language war (2000).
by Robin Tolmach Lakoff. P40.45.U5 L35 2000

Language and woman's place: text and commentaries (2004). (originally 1975).
by Robin Tolmach Lakoff and Mary Bucholtz. HQ1206 .L36 2004

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