Buy New

Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering.
Buy Used
Used - Good See details
Price: £4.41

Trade in Yours
For a £2.02 Gift Card
Trade in
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Tell the Publisher!
I’d like to read this book on Kindle

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

Through the Language Glass: How Words Colour your World [Hardcover]

Guy Deutscher
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
Price: £20.00 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
Want it Wednesday, 24 Dec.? Choose Express delivery at checkout. Details
‹  Return to Product Overview

Product Description


""Jaw-droppingly wonderful... A marvellous and surprising book which left me breathless and dizzy with delight. The ironic, playful tone at the beginning gradates into something serious that is never pompous, intellectually and historically complex and yet always pellucidly laid out. Plus I learned the word plaidoyer which I shall do my utmost to use every day..."" (Stephen Fry)

"This fabulously interesting book describes an area of intellectual history replete with brilliant leaps of intuition and crazy dead ends. Guy Deutscher, who combines enthusiasm with scholarly a vigorous and engaging guide to it...a remarkably rich, provocative and intelligent work of pop science." (Sam Leith Sunday Times)

"brilliant... As befits a book about language, this inspiring amalgam of cultural history and science is beautifully written." (Clive Cookson Financial Times)

"so robustly researched and wonderfully told that it is hard to put down...Deutscher...brings together more than a century's worth of captivating characters, incidents and experiments that illuminate the relationship between words and mind" (New Scientist)

"A delight to read" (Spectator)

Book Description

A brilliant and provocative exploration of how the cultures we live in affect the languages we speak and how we think of the world around us.

From the Inside Flap

A nation's language, or so we are often told, reflects its culture, psyche and modes of thought. Some languages don't have a future tense, so naturally their speakers have no grasp of the future. The Babylonians would have been hard pressed to understand Crime and Punishment because their language used the same word to describe both these concepts. German is a model of logical organization, which is why the Germans have such an orderly mind; English is an adaptable, even promiscuous language; and Italian - ah, Italian!

Many a dinner conversation is animated by such vignettes, and yet, pour a few cold facts over such observations, and they soon collapse like a soufflé of airy anecdote - at best amusing and meaningless, at worst bigoted and absurd. So once one has sifted out the unfounded and the uninformed, the farcical and the fantastic, is there anything sensible left to be said about the relation between language, culture and thought? Does language reflect the culture of a society in any profound sense, beyond such trivia as the number of words it has for snow or for shearing camels? Is our mother-tongue a lens through which we perceive the world? Can different languages lead their speakers to different thoughts? Could our experience of a Chagall painting depend on whether our language has a word for 'blue'?

In Through the Language Glass, acclaimed author Guy Deutscher will convince you that, contrary to the fashionable academic consensus of today, the answer to all these questions is - yes. On an odyssey that takes us from Homer to Darwin, from scientists to savages, from the corridors of Yale to the rivers of the Amazon, from how to name the rainbow to why Russian water - a 'she' - become a 'he' once you have dipped a tea bag into her, this book explores some of the most fascinating and controversial questions about language, culture and the human mind.

From the Back Cover

Praise for The Unfolding of Language

'A REVELATION... This book has permanently changed the way I think about language' MARK HADDON

'A highly original study of the evolution of language... BRILLIANT, extremely thought-provoking, clever and convincing... THIS BOOK WILL STRETCH YOUR MIND' Independent on Sunday

'Remarkable' Scotsman

'I WAS ENTHRALLED' A.S.Byatt, Guardian Books of the Year

'Deutscher is illuminating on everything' Independent

'Powerful and thrilling.' Spectator

'Animated [and] extremely persuasive' Guardian

About the Author

Guy Deutscher is the author of The Unfolding of Language: The Evolution of Mankind's Greatest Invention. Formerly a Fellow of St John's College, Cambridge, and of the Department of Ancient Near Eastern Languages in the University of Leiden in the Netherlands, he is an honorary Research Fellow at the School of Languages, Linguistics and Cultures in the University of Manchester. Through the Language Glass is his third book. He lives in Oxford with his wife and two daughters.
‹  Return to Product Overview