2016年9月18日 星期日

uncanny, figurative, postfigurative, cofigurative, family resemblance

One lesson from recent economic troubles has been the usefulness of history. Just as the crisis was unfolding, the Harvard economists Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff — who unfortunately became famous for their worst work — published a brilliant book with the sarcastic title “This Time Is Different.” Their point, of course, was that there is a strong family resemblance among crises. Indeed, historical parallels — not just to the 1930s, but to Japan in the 1990s, Britain in the 1920s, and more — have been vital guides to the present.

從最近的經濟問題中可以學到的一點是歷史 的用處。就在危機逐步擴大之時,哈佛大學(Harvard)經濟學家卡門·萊因哈特(Carmen Reinhart)和肯尼斯·羅格夫(Kenneth Rogoff)出版了一本出色的書,書名充滿諷刺,叫做《這次不一樣》(This Time Is Different)。(很可惜這兩位作者卻是因為他們最糟糕的作品出的名。)當然,他們在書中的觀點是歷次危機之間有很強的家族相似性。的確,歷史上的 歷次危機,不只是20世紀30年代的危機,還有20世紀90年代的日本,20世紀20年代的英國等等,對當下的危機都是關鍵的借鑒。

文選序 事出於沉思 義歸乎翰藻善於用事 用比
事是事類 就是典故 藻指譬喻 比類 也兼指典故

figurative (LANGUAGE) adjective

(of words and phrases) used not with their basic meaning but with a more imaginative meaning:
Of course, she was using the term 'massacre' in the figurative sense.
Compare literal.
figuratively adverb
Figuratively speaking, it was a blow right between the eyes (= it was a bad shock).

Culture and Commitment: A Study of the Generation Gap

1972年Ladder EDITION 改寫成3000英文字水準的小書
2010 年我發現 PRE-FIGURATIVE 等3字還不認識


1 〈意味・語句が〉比喩[隠喩]的な(意味で用いた);文字どおりでない(⇔literal);(…を)表象[象徴]する((of ...))
in a figurative sense
2 〈文体・作家が〉比喩[文飾]の多い[好きな]
a figurative style [author]
3 〈絵画・彫刻が〉形象描写の
the figurative arts

    1. Based on or making use of figures of speech; metaphorical: figurative language.
    2. Containing many figures of speech; ornate.
  1. Represented by a figure or resemblance; symbolic or emblematic.
  2. Of or relating to artistic representation by means of animal or human figures.
figuratively fig'u·ra·tive·ly adv.
figurativeness fig'u·ra·tive·ness n.
Adolescence is a time in which the behaviors of childhood are abandoned and the roles of adulthood are taken up. This book describes the different ways in which youths arrive at their adult roles.

In very stable, unchanging cultures youths learn from both their parents and their grandparents how to act as adults. These are postfigurative cultures, thus named because they look back to the past for guidance. Many native cultures were postfigurative before they gained access western culture via radio and TV.

Societies which exist in a state of change are called cofigurative cultures. Many western cultures in the twentieth century are examples of this. In this circumstance both youths and adults learn from their peers. Much of the past must be abandoned as new circumstances arrive demanding new behaviors.

Mead proposes that a third, prefigurative culture may emerge in the future. This type of society is subject to continued, radical change. In it adults learn from their children. Youths have the adaptability to cope with rapid change. They must 'make up' their behavior as they go along. Peers can help but even they remain largely ignorant of 'what is right' as change is so rapid.

This book was written just after the counter-culture of the 1960s. At the time it must have seemed that the world was going to experience an alarming rate of change. As a result of the baby boom youth seemed to be taking over the world. Prefigurative culture never eventuated but of course that is not to say it can never happen. 

  family resemblance

Family resemblance (German: Familienähnlichkeit) is a philosophical idea made popular by Ludwig Wittgenstein, with the best known exposition being given in the posthumously published book Philosophical Investigations (1953)[1] It has been suggested that Wittgenstein picked up the idea and the term from Nietzsche, who had been using it, as did many nineteenth century philologists, when discoursing about language families.[2] Wittgenstein's point was that things which may be thought to be connected by one essential common feature may in fact be connected by a series of overlapping similarities, where no one feature is common to all. Games, which Wittgenstein used as an example in order to explain the notion, have become the paradigmatic example of a group that is related by family resemblances.
The first occurrence of the term "Family resemblance" is found in a note from 1930, commenting on Spengler's ideas.[3] The notion itself features widely in Wittgenstein's later work, and in the Investigations it is introduced in response to questions about the general form of propositions and the essence of language – questions which were central to Wittgenstein throughout his philosophical career. This suggests that family resemblance was of prime importance for Wittgenstein's later philosophy; however, like many of his ideas, it is hard to find precise agreement within the secondary literature on either its place within Wittgenstein's later thought or on its wider philosophical significance.
Since the publication of the Investigations the notion of family resemblance has been discussed extensively not only in the philosophical literature, but also, for example, in works dealing with classification where the approach is described as 'polythetic', distinguishing it from the traditional approach known now as 'monothetic'. Prototype theory is a recent development in cognitive science where this idea has also been explored. As the idea gains popularity, earlier instances of its occurrence are rediscovered e.g. in 18th century taxonomy,[4] in the writings of Vygotsky[5] or Tatarkiewicz.[6]

 ルートヴィヒ・ウィトゲンシュタインはその著書『哲学探究』のなかで、「ゲーム」(: Spiel)という語をとりあげ、「ゲーム」と呼ばれている全ての外延(対象)を特徴づけるような共通の内包(意義)は存在せず、実際には「勝敗が定まること」や「娯楽性」など部分的に共通する特徴によって全体が緩くつながっているに過ぎないことを指摘し、これを家族的類似と名付けた。この考え方はプロトタイプ理論とともに、語の定義を必要十分条件で規定しようとする古典的なカテゴリー観へのアンチテーゼとなっている。

adjective ━━ a. 薄気味悪い, ものすごい, 不思議な; 並はずれて(優れて)いる.
strange or mysterious; difficult or impossible to explain:
an uncanny resemblance
China's political and business elites seem to have an uncanny ability to avoid going gray.

Her predictions turned out to be uncannily accurate.


Pronunciation: /rɪˈzɛmbl(ə)ns/

Definition of resemblance


[mass noun]
  • the state of resembling or being alike:they bear some resemblance to Italian figurines [count noun]:there was a close resemblance between herself and Anne
  • [count noun] a way in which two or more things are alike:the physical resemblances between humans and apes