ETC.: A Review of General Semantics

This quarterly journal provides peer-reviewed articles on topics relating to general semantics.

Articles from Vol. 55, No. 4, Winter

A Modest Proposal
If it is an historical fact and also a psycho-logical fact that a time-binding class of life has to have periods of development, let us have them! - AK Welcome to the first installment of what might end up as a regular column in ETC. Interestingly...
Biophysics, Linguistics and the Unity of Science
FIFTY YEARS AGO IN ETC Our body of scientific knowledge is not spread evenly over all possible subject matter. People have been led to examine this or that facet of the universe for this or that reason; at any one moment there exists a variety of...
Exchange of Symbols
About a century or two ago, the Pope decided that all the Jews had to leave Rome. Naturally there was a big uproar from the Jewish community. So the Pope made a deal. He would have a religious debate with a member of the Jewish community. If the Jew...
General Semantics: A Tool for the Counselor
The counselor who employs general semantics in his professional life sees the client in a different light. Information which has hitherto been routinely entered on the data sheet during an initial interview takes on new meanings, for the counselor...
General Semantics on the Internet
What do you think of when you think of general semantics? Alfred Korzybski? Science and Sanity? IGS? ISGS? ETC? If I stick with E-Prime, I can avoid telling you what gs 'is'. (Probably helpful for all of us.) But whatever gs 'is', you can find it-...
Horace Bushnell Reconsidered
In a sense, 1849 was the beginning of a century of scientific optimism. Sharing this optimism, Bushnell was among those who stood for a language rooted in the exact, empirically demonstrated relations of fact. Like most of the men of his day - who...
Learning about Structures in Relationships
This summer, 17 students at Alverno College in Milwaukee participated in a unique, four-day, three-credit pilot course that I designed as a seminar in general semantics. Milton Dawes was the principle guest lecturer and focused daily lessons on a theme...
Marriage - Vicious and Delicious Circles
Marriages are said to be made in Heaven, which may be why they don't work here on Earth. Thomas Szasz, The Untamed Tongue Like many married couples, Carol and Steve agreed "perfectly on what was wrong with their marriage - the other person's...
Metaphors around the TV Remote Control
We are given a small, rectangular piece of plastic with buttons on it. We are told it is a "remote control." We point it at the television, move our thumb, press a button, and the channel changes. What are we doing? What do we call this action? ...
Semantics in International Relations
The tricks which politicians have played with language through the ages to lead and to mislead people is the subject of a large literature. Usually the discussion is confined to the past rather than the present for the simple reason that current circumlocutions...
The Assumptions We Die By
Forty-one years ago, in 1958, I wrote an essay for ETC, "The Assumptions We Live By." Now, with all but one of my seven children established and independent, the computer and internet a major presence, and after successful bouts with asthma, gout,...
The Problem of Labeling: The Semantics of Behavior
Introductory note: For our training programs the pages on which talks such as this one appear have three columns. In the small left hand column suggested time values are given, corresponding to sections of the talk, so that they can be completed in...
The Unspeakables
We have chronicled various technical and social microcosms of clones and cloning in the 23rd century. Let us now look at the macrocosm, especially the changing political-economic structure that fostered the development of such investment-heavy technology...