- Hardcover: 320 pages
- Publisher: William Heinemann; 1st edn edition (3 Jun. 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 043401690X
- ISBN-13: 978-0434016907
- Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 3.3 x 24 cm
- Average Customer Review: 86 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 666,011 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Through the Language Glass: How Words Colour your World Hardcover – 3 Jun 2010
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""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 pugnacity...is 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)
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.See all Product description
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Maybe Guy Deutscher's NEXT book could address some of these issues??
Read it together with Jackendoff, "A User's Guide to Thought and Meaning", which I also recommend.
Just as good as Pinker's books, and much better than David Crystal, "How Language Works", although Crystal is good on phonetics.
Deutscher and Jackendoff are firmly non-Chomskian. They believe that children learn language through co-variance, and do
not suggest an internal inherited grammar exists, which is a belief that Chomsky still holds, according to his YouTube videos.
Deutscher has a short YouTube too.
Unfortunately, although the topic, examples etc are intriguing, the style is annoying. The author seems to subscribe to the view that one sentence is never enough - he can use pages to cover what could be expressed just as well in one paragraph. There is also a sneering tone which creeps in at many points, which is frankly annoying.
The book could undoubtedly be both shorter and less annoying if written in a different style. However, I would recommend reading it for the insights it gives into the world, and the preconceptions about what is "normal" that it challenges.
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I wonder if Deutscher has ever heard of Wilhelm von Humboldt (long before...Read more
It is thoroughly researched, intelligent, controversial, witty and beautifully written.Read more