Chapter

Principles of the Revolution: A Retrospective Summary

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/9780520079588.003.0029
Principles of the Revolution: A Retrospective Summary

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These three—the base language of the society, the individual, and the text—are interdependent: Without many individuals whose base language is Hebrew, no language of a Hebrew society could function, and vice versa; without a living society in Hebrew, a Hebrew-speaking individual is nothing but a curiosity or a Don Quixote. Also, without the continuous development of a rich language of texts, there is not a full life either for the individual or for the society in our complex world (unless they preserve their language as a “tribal tongue” as many African nations do, and require another language, e.g., English, for cultural life), and vice versa; without a society living in this language, the world of texts has no foundation, as Hebrew and Yiddish literature in Diaspora died out. The connection between the three intertwined systems is circular.

Keywords: base; language; society; individual; text; Hebrew; English; Yiddish; literature; Diaspora

Chapter.  1555 words. 

Subjects: Social and Cultural Anthropology

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