language shapes the way we think

One obvious consequence of speaking such a language is that you have to stay oriented at all times, or else you cannot speak properly. The normal greeting in Kuuk Thaayorre is “Where are you going?” and the answer should be something like “Southsoutheast, in the middle distance.” Edge: HOW DOES OUR LANGUAGE SHAPE THE WAY WE THINK? By Lera Boroditsky, my new hero. I’ve long been fascinated by the question, but I had no idea there was a history of debate about this – I was plain shocked to learn that most people thought language does not affect the way we think. It just seems so obvious to me, and I love the research Lera Boroditsky has done to demonstrate the many ways it’s true. See also: NPR: Shakespeare Had Roses All Wrong.

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