Simple Words, Article Review Example

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Article Review

Everyday words used, by people, to signify robust vocabulary and intelligence are all in order or good but sometimes they cannot be always the best words. This paper review gives a presentation of how simple words can mean different things or apply for different cases at the same time. Words such as wrong, right, good and evil appear in all thought disciplines, but radically, they signify different things.

In the “Word and World”, a reader in critical thinking by Kent Lewis, there are numerous examples of simple words that the author deals with showing multiplicity of these words meanings although some people may cling to an ultimate meaning.

In morality, the author deals with the words “good” and “evil”. These words are rampant in not only the pulpits but also any legal system. The words, according to Ken depend on the standard applying. For instance, one could say that French fries are good or bad. The situation is contradictory but put in ethical views we can see the sense of each answer whether evil or good. A vegetarian regard French fries bad because of the presence of beef tallow. For an economist, French fries are good because they generate tax revenue and create employment. Thus, from these examples, we can argue that evil and good are not hard facts, but relative and subjective terms, which change as per preferences and philosophies. However, we cannot rule out that these words are meaningless. Use of a few precautions helps in processing the claims of evil and good. These precautions include identifying the value system, considering the claim from another position, and negotiating and choosing between value systems.

Robert Anton Wilson, in his essay “What is ‘Against Nature’?” suggests that appeals towards natural law, in scientific clothing, are little more than moral commands. Associated to the words law and nature, we add another word: genetic. Ken asserts that scientists overstate the potential of genetic research. Scientists claim that a “master program” of the genetic code determines all things from body, behavior, to shape, to sexual orientation. However, Ken argues that it is unfortunate that the scientists’ claim exaggerates the role of DNA and downplays man’s free responsibility and free will. Genes may determine simple things such as the color of eyes, but they cannot cause complex matters including personality, disease or intelligence. Although genes can pass on proclivity developing an illness, a disease such as cancer results from a combination of other factors including lifestyle, diet, environment and mindset. With these variables, according to Ken, we can argue that it is misleading and reductive that genes are responsible for cancer.

Scientists diminish human ability to influence meaningful change when they describe genome as destiny. Ken argues that by accepting the existence of a “cancer gene” we become unwilling to exercise, eat well, educate citizens, legislate against pollution and fund health centres as these activities would seem in vain considering a genetic fate.

Meanings of words also differ according to the culture using it. For instance, the word barbarous, which means strange, foreign or ignorant. For the ancient Attic Greeks, barbarian referred to an outsider, a person who did not know the Greek customs. The opposite of this is an insider, a person who belongs to the Greek group and knows the Greek codes.

The word idiot is another example of simple word that depends on culture. According to Greek, the word refers to idiots, meaning a person speaking private languages. According to this case, idiot is not a fool but a person talking differently from the rest.

From the examples above, we can see that simple words may have different meanings according to determiners including culture, standards, amongst others. Therefore, we should be careful to use simple words in a way that we do not misuse them.

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