Sunday 8 April 2012

On Learning Language

I have put my faith in language - hence the panic when a simple word illudes me, when I stare at a piece of flowered material in front of a window and do not know what name to give it. Curtain. Thank God. I control the world so long as I can name it. Which is why children must chase language before they do anything else, tame the wilderness by describing it, challenge God by learning His hundred names. 'What's that called?' Lisa used to ask me. 'And that? And that?'

Penelope Lively: Moon Tiger

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