The Tree of Meaning: Language, Mind and Ecology

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"Poems, where I come from," writes Robert Bringhurst, "are spoken to be written and written to be spoken. The Tree of Meaning is a book of critical prose composed in the same way." Together these 13 lectures present a superbly grounded approach to the study of language, focusing on storytelling, mythology, comparative literature, humanity, and the breadth of oral culture. Spanning 10 years of lectures, The Tree of Meaning presents the best of Robert Bringhurst's thinking. The author's commitment to what he calls "ecological linguistics" emerges in his striking studies of Native American art and storytelling, his understanding of poetry, and his championing of a universal conception of what constitutes literature. This collection features an in-depth look at Haida culture (including the work of storytellers Skaay and Ghandl, and artist Bill Reid), the process of translation, and the relationship between being and language.

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"[Bringhurst] is part MIT and part California ashram; when reading him one has the unusual sense that the writer, even without his writing, would be an interesting guy."

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9781582435053: The Tree of Meaning: Language, Mind and Ecology

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ISBN 10:  1582435057 ISBN 13:  9781582435053
Publisher: Counterpoint LLC, 2009
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