Language Changes What We See And Makes Us See Things That "Aren't There:" An Argument Against Objectivity

By John Ericson on August 14, 2013 12:37 PM EDT

Plato's Allegory of the Cave
Philosophers have long suspected that perception is a fundamentally subjective faculty. (Photo: Jan Saenredam, "Plato)

Much of 20th Century philosophy is marked by a belief in the fundamental, ontological primacy of language and words. Figures like Ludwig Wittgenstein and Jacques Derrida submit that thinking is lingual, and that without language there can be no thought at all, much less a world to perceive.

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New research from Yale University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison suggests that the dominance of language may be more than a philosophical concept. In a new study, they show that verbal stimuli can effectively alter the way we perceive the world, making us see things that aren't there.

Read more at MedicalDaily.com.

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