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Humboldt, Worldview and Language$
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James Underhill

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780748638420

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748638420.001.0001

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A Seeing and Feeling Worldview

A Seeing and Feeling Worldview

(p.106) Chapter 13 A Seeing and Feeling Worldview
Humboldt, Worldview and Language

W. Underhill James

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter points out that the term ‘worldview’ unfortunately stresses the visual nature of understanding and perception at the expense of the other senses. Perception and sensation involve smell, touch, taste and hearing. These senses themselves are cultivated by the interaction of experience and understanding, and language plays a role in this process. The author stresses that languages offer widely different ways of speaking about sensation, concepts for taste and so on. At a metaphoric level experience is explained in terms of senses when we speak of ‘loud’ colours’ and ‘the bitter truth’. And these expressions do not coincide in all languages. Although the author stresses, that Humboldt's understanding of Weltansicht included all the senses, he does point out that the German terms stress seeing over the other senses, as does the French translation of them, vision du monde.

Keywords:   Sensation, Sweetser, Synaesthesia

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