Academic journal article ETC.: A Review of General Semantics

In This Issue

Academic journal article ETC.: A Review of General Semantics

In This Issue

Article excerpt

In this issue we explore some ways that words and symbols, for better or worse, shape our lives - correction - the way in which we use words and symbols, mindfully or mindlessly, to construct, interpret, enhance, diminish, or otherwise mold our lives.

Do the new technologies compromise our privacy? Do we voluntarily surrender our privacy in exchange for dubious benefits? As we approach the 21st Century, what changes influence the age-old struggle between personal privacy and public good? In Networking America: The Cultural Context of the Privacy v. Publicity Debates, distinguished sociologist Irving Louis Horowitz examines the foundations of privacy as well as contemporary threats to the delicate balance necessary for a healthy society. Horowitz notes, "For while the content of the privacy versus publicity debate is universal and long-standing, its context has become uniquely Americanized and short-fused."

From sandlot to prison yard, three strikes and you're out. The familiar Three Strikes Metaphor has taken an unexpected political twist, with some tragic consequences. Raymond Gozzi, Jr., our astute observer of Metaphors in Action, notes how the game metaphor usually suggests fair play and healthy competition. Yet the bandwagon three strikes legislation has resulted in some unfair sentencing, for example, 25 years for stealing a bottle of vitamins. When we as members of society use metaphors as a substitute for thinking things through, beware!

Irrational beliefs make us feel bad and cause us to make unproductive choices because of the role such beliefs play in decision making. Professor Gardner Gateley draws on the work of Dr. Albert Ellis and Edward MacNeal, in his Rational-Behavior Therapy as Correcting Demamaps. …

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