The Humanity Of Words - online book

A Primer Of Semantics

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question that Northrop raises is this Does the value system have confirmation in what is known? Everyone of us, sooner or later, comes up against the hard cold fact that the advance of knowledge has been an international enterprise; that with the advance of science, we have experienced a concomitant advance in philosophy, in the arts, in industry, etc. But where, Northrop asks, is the advance toward membership in the human community?
We have not yet opened our minds and our hearts and our selves to the one enveloping fact that the community is now the world and that the class to which we belong is humanity.
Can an ethics be built around the basic assumptions of science1958? Is there an ethics that will accept process with inevitable change? Is there an ethics that will accept the uniqueness of every human being who lives? Is there an ethics that will accept universal relatedness? Is there an ethics that will accept the assumption of order, as exhibited in patternsnatural and man-madean order that would include the race, man; habitat, the world? Northrop says Yes and that such an ethics is true.
Persuasion can, and should, rest upon supportive evidence. Our semantic devices will make it possible for us to persuade others to desired responses through the communication of ideas and ideals which have their roots in the assumptions of science.
10. Will we OPEN OUT SELVES?
If we start with the premise that there is no strict line of demarcation between the self and the world, we must conclude that man is, by nature, conjoined with man; that groups of men are, by nature, conjoined with other groups of men. And we must conclude, finally, that it remains only