Chapter

The Individual

Benjamin Harshav

in Language in Time of Revolution

Published by University of California Press

Published in print August 1993 | ISBN: 9780520079588
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520912960 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520079588.003.0011
The Individual

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This chapter describes a situation in culture as a result of the interaction of two kinds of entities: social, cultural, and ideological trends and individual junctions. A junction is a cluster of and a selection from intersecting tendencies that constitute an autonomous existential unit, such as a text or a person. A text, however, is not simply a given intersection of relations, ideas, or poetic principles, but an individualized body of language, marked by partial coherence, and reader-dependent. In this sense, a person may be seen as a text, but unlike a text, he is open-ended in time, has the ability of shifting and changing, actively reshuffling his own hierarchies, reaching out for material from the outside, explicitly formulating experiences, and reunderstanding himself. In a person, furthermore, biological, physical, economic, and social aspects of existence are intermingled with ideational, linguistic, and semiotic elements.

Keywords: culture; entities; trends; individual; text; person; language; existence

Chapter.  2045 words. 

Subjects: Social and Cultural Anthropology

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