A Time for Such a Word

CAROLINE - Linthicum, Maryland
Entered on April 27, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe in the inexhaustible search for meaning behind expression.

Language holds the most potential for interpretation. The search for meaning is a goal, both innately simple and complex, found by thinking vertically and horizontally. Meaning is found by exploring a work as a whole, focusing on applying information you already know and using creative intuition in a form of synthesis. The search branches out in a variety of different directions, leading each inquiring mind on its own and separate path. Truth is often found through the exploration of words and their author’s attempts to convey their meaning. I believe we are drawing away from this provocative enterprise. By dulling our “experience of reading,” it becomes harder to decode the intent and find truth in words.

I’ve found that if I don’t appreciate this search anymore it’s simply because I’ve adjusted to an objective world. So much is expected of me that I hardly have the time to explore words. Conversations have become more to inform and advise, less to build relationships and express ourselves. I now dull myself to experience. I’ve become boring. Attempting to attach words with meaning and truly indulge myself in a book, letter, conversation or speech involves an amount of effort I’d rather preserve for things that I’ve deemed more worthy of my energy.

The relationship between words and is a weak one. Words all have different connotations, and they vary by their context, making an exact reflection of thoughts impossible. I can only hope to invoke similar thoughts.

What might appear as a vague expression of words doesn’t necessarily mean an author is having trouble getting his point across. He or she could just be going about it in his or her own way. Now more than ever, the ways in which the words are expressed hold their meaning. As Marshall McLuhan said, “the medium is the message.” An excessive amount of words, written in what appears to be an ostentatious manner, might bore or frustrate their contemporary audience. Maybe the words have become more difficult to truly appreciate, but behind what’s written is still the principle of language, holding an important message inscribed by its author.

I believe that everyone is capable of enjoying and appreciating written word regardless of era. It’s simple and very comfortable. The style has changed but the ability of an audience to decipher an author’s intent hasn’t. Behind language is reason, and it’s the relationship between author and audience that determines how the reading is interpreted. It is the receiver’s job to analyze the words, and I know I generally acknowledge this when I pick up a written text (at least when it’s done under my own volition). The words used by others are our words given meaning by the narrator. We have the ability to see past the words because they are simply a vessel. Therefore, the search for truth and meaning behind expression is constant and individualized.