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Second Pattern: Method

1

IT has been remarked that the second pattern differs from the first in its external aspects alone. The old factors have only to be recognized in their new form. In the present chapter this contention will be established in detail, with particular attention to methodology. It will be shown that our previous conclusions, as developed for the first pattern, can be extended to the second without essential change.

Let us begin by emphasizing a point which, although apparent in all that has preceded, has not been explicitly stated:

The effect of any persuasive statement lies in the combined use of both emotive and descriptive meanings. This is true not merely because persuasion is so habitually accompanied by reasons, or because emotive meaning is so often dependent on descriptive meaning; it is true quite independently of that. For when emotive meaning praises or condemns, descriptive meaning must indicate the object on which praise or condemnation is bestowed. Without both sorts of meaning, acting together, the persuasion will lack either force or direction. Although a persuasive statement need not give new information about any object, it must at least center the emotive influence on an object that is descriptively designated.1 The verbal form of the statement which combines the meanings is not of great consequence. All that is required, for persuasion, is that the meanings be combined by some device or another.

This observation helps us to see, first of all, why second-pattern definitions are persuasive and first-pattern ones are not. In the

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There are exceptions, of course. One may persuade without using any emotive term, so long as an emotive effect is secured by gesture or intonation. And one may persuade without strictly designating the object praised or condemned, so long as the object is evident from the general situation, or from the interpretation of a metaphor. But these exceptions are so obvious that we may here conveniently neglect them, for simplicity.

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Ethics and Language
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Preface vii
  • Contents ix
  • Ethics and Language 1
  • II - Working Models 20
  • III - Some Pragmatic Aspects of Meaning? 37
  • Iv First Pattern of Analysis 81
  • V - First Pattern: Method 111
  • VI - Persuasion 139
  • VII - Validity 152
  • VIII - Intrinsic and Extrinsic Value 174
  • IX - Second Pattern of Analysis: Persuasive Definitions 206
  • X - Second Pattern: Method 227
  • XI - Moralists and Propagandists 243
  • XII - Some Related Theories 253
  • XIII - Further Observations on the Function of Definitions 277
  • XIV - Avoidability; Indeterminism 298
  • XV - Practical Implications 319
  • Index of Proper Names 337
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