The Birth and Death of Meaning: An Interdisciplinary by Ernest Becker PDF

By Ernest Becker

ISBN-10: 0029021901

ISBN-13: 9780029021903

Makes use of the disciplines of psychology, anthropology, sociology and psychiatry to give an explanation for what makes humans act the way in which they do.

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Extra info for The Birth and Death of Meaning: An Interdisciplinary Perspective on the Problem of Man

Sample text

Although outsiders may think that “mountain talk” is unsophisticated or uneducated, the complex features briefly surveyed here indicate that this dialect is anything but simple. The people of the Smoky Mountains have created and maintained a dialect that reflects both their history and their identity. This dialect is quite distinct both linguistically and socially. As you will hear when you visit the area, mountain talk displays and preserves local tradition, culture, and experience. To hear the language of the Smoky Mountains is to hear the mountains talk.

The accent that emerges from this study, as well as from tape-recordings of Charlestonians born around the beginning of the twentieth century, is distinct not only from most other dialects of American English but also from the rest of the South. The special position that it occupies among the dialects of North America is not necessarily due to the uniqueness of any single feature, as most of its traits can be found in other dialects of English, but rather to its unique combination of features and to the sources of these traits.

This pronunciation has been stereotyped in spellings such as a boot for about, pronounced something like uh-buh-oot. This pronunciation is found not only in Charleston; Canada is known for this pronunciation, as well as parts of the US such as the Tidewater region of Virginia. The initial part of the vowel sound is also raised in the pronunciation of like, rice, and tight. In its most extreme form, the vowel of like may sound more like lake and rice more like race. 32 Doing the Charleston AVC05 32 21/7/05, 10:47 AM Another feature of Charleston is a lack of distinction between certain vowels before r, leading to identical pronunciation of words such as ear and air, hear and hair, and beer and bear.

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The Birth and Death of Meaning: An Interdisciplinary Perspective on the Problem of Man by Ernest Becker

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