Tag Archives: Symbolism/subsymbolism

How to make that a symbol becomes related to things on which it is not grounded, and a nice introduction to the symbolist/subsymbolist dilemma

Veale, Tony and Al-Najjar, Khalid (2016). Grounded for life: creative symbol-grounding for lexical invention. Connection Science 28(2). DOI: 10.1080/09540091.2015.1130025

One of the challenges of linguistic creativity is to use words in a way that is novel and striking and even whimsical, to convey meanings that remain stubbornly grounded in the very same world of familiar experiences as serves to anchor the most literal and unimaginative language. The challenge remains unmet by systems that merely shuttle or arrange words to achieve novel arrangements without concern as to how those arrangements are to spur the processes of meaning construction in a listener. In this paper we explore a problem of lexical invention that cannot be solved without a model ? explicit or implicit ? of the perceptual grounding of language: the invention of apt new names for colours. To solve this problem here we shall call upon the notion of a linguistic readymade, a phrase that is wrenched from its original context of use to be given new meaning and new resonance in new settings. To ensure that our linguistic readymades ? which owe a great deal to Marcel Duchamp’s notion of found art ? are anchored in a consensus model of perception, we introduce the notion of a lexicalised colour stereotype.