About modifiers in conjunction with qualitative words:

January 28, 2006 at 15:50 | Posted in communicative media | 1 Comment

Perhaps I am alone in my disposition here, but some words are not suited for being modified. For instance, if you say you love someone isn’t that an absolute term? Is it possible to love one person more than another? Or, if someone is thoughtful can they really be very thoughtful?

It seems like modifiers in conjunction with qualitative statements have nothing to do with the words they’re used in conjunction with, rather they describe some affect of personal significance. When people say they love someone very much the modifier seems to signify an effort to convey personal significance. For instance:

I love my parents. Within the methods of human media (communication) there are no palpable methods for conveying emotional dispositions/values. The only way for me to express the fact that I love my parents is to say, “I love my parents,” (Obviously I could draw a picture, or use some other medium for communication, but they inevitably boil down to being conveyed through words). If I feel that words don’t sufficiently communicate my love for my parents I modify “I love my parents,” with something like very much: “I love my parents very much.” This modifier then gives the impression that I am better expressing my love of my parents.

The extra-expressive modifiers have no grammatic/textual value, only a perceived cultural value.

Using words without an awareness of their implications is a bad habit. I’m not attempting to say that I have concisely expressed the value of words here, I’m just attempting to provide some increment of awareness to act as a departure point for further investigation on the parts of people who use words.

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1 Comment »

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  1. I really like your thoughts.


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