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Does Language Shape Culture?

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Does Language Shape Culture?

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  • December 2009
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Csécsei Luca 12.IB

Does language shape culture?

Most questions of whether and how language shapes thought start with the simple observation that languages differ from one another. And a lot! Just look at the way people talk, they might say. Certainly, speakers of different languages must attend to strikingly different aspects of the world just so they can use their language properly.

The word order can be completely different among languages. And also there are tenses in some languages that we do not have, use or do not know what it really means. Such as the subjunctive in spanish language. It is a tense which is the hardest to learn while learning spanish, because such a tense that has so many meanings does not exist nor in hungarian, neither in english. I had the chance to spend a year in the U.K. and i also to take spanish there, i experinced that to learn this tense is just as hard for the english as it was for me when I learned spanish in my previous school, which was a spanish-hungarian bilingual school.

Culture is learned, but taught through the language. Language is never the entity which has been invented in isolation. It certainly has evolved gradually with the continuous development of a culture. A culture being a building made of different beliefs in supernatural, social behaviors, human emotions, or way of expressing feelings, the language has continually adapted accordingly to accommodate these identified notion and gesture of human activity. Finding a symbolism every time to register it in the language, thus contributing to its growth. A language has always been a weapon to express one's ideas and feelings. And the reason enough to make this weapon more efficient to handle one's need of expressing things with intended accuracy. It has been tuned-up with each new finding, getting honed up continually to get its flawless shape with developing culture. Culture is determined by the language it uses with a great extent. The first thing that...