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The Meaning of Meaning

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  63 ratings  ·  7 reviews
Language is the most important of all the instruments of civilization. This is the premise of a work whose significance to the study of language, literature, and philosophy has remained undiminished since its original publication in 1923. New Introduction by Umberto Eco; Indices.
Paperback, 396 pages
Published June 26th 1989 by Mariner Books (first published 1923)
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3.84  · 
Rating details
 ·  63 ratings  ·  7 reviews

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Leon M
Sep 18, 2010 rated it really liked it
Books about philosophy of language always make my head go round in circles. This one did, too. But if you take the time to read and re-read the important bits, you gain an understanding of the importance of the subject and maybe even an understanding of the "Meaning of Meaning" itself.

One of the main points the book makes is the prevalence of the "proper meaning superstition" and the fact that there can be no serious discussion of the philosophy of language prior to its abolition. The proper mea
Alex Lee
Feb 07, 2015 rated it it was ok
In many ways, this is a very unsatisfying book. Since it is written in the early 20th century, coming with this book is a reading of structuralism that is not quite formed, but definitely in full swing. The title is apt, but also guaranteed to be a let down, because if anything the book doesn't come close to providing any meaning of meaning, although that is what it is about.

As considered, the text was revolutionary for its time. You can see that the two rhetoricians went far in their attempt to
Nov 09, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
Well, there are some real gems in this book. Sometimes I can rate a book by how much I write on the margins of the book. I write a lot in the margins of this book. Sometimes it isn't really from the ideas in the book as much as they provoke my thinking about my ideas. I also like the historical aspect of reading a book that is about 90 years old and those (at that time) new authors he quotes and I also like his love (and my love) of footnotes. And, this said, the writing style was often tough fo ...more
Anna Bosman
Jan 09, 2012 rated it it was ok
Paged through rather than read, and since I can't see myself finishing it in either near or distant future, I'd rather remove it from the to-read list where the book clearly doesn't belong. It proved too abstract for my liking and happened to catch me in precisely that transition state when you become more aware of the strangeness and intrigue of the material world, giving up the in-depth studies of its bony abstract reflections in the verbal mirrors made by fellow human beings. Rationalisation ...more
Jun 17, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: field-exam, rhetoric
Okay. Less fun than Philosophy of Rhetoric was, and less immediately applicable to rhetoric. Darn structuralists--seems like I'm becoming quite well-read in them quite inadvertently. There are maybe 3 or 4 chapters that are fulfilling, and, admittedly, it took a little cross-research to understand what they were shooting for. On the plus side, I got to contribute to Wikipedia on this one. Can I count that as a publication?
Jeffry Larson
Supplement II reinforced my nominalism.
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Charles Kay Ogden (1 June 1889 – 20 March 1957) was an English linguist, philosopher, and writer. Described as a polymath but also an eccentric and outsider, he took part in many ventures related to literature, politics, the arts and philosophy, having a broad effect particularly as an editor, translator, and activist on behalf of a reformed version of the English language. He is typically defined ...more