Explain a Quote in Huckle Berry Finn

Topics: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, French people, French Canadian Pages: 1 (317 words) Published: September 12, 2010
Explain How Language Shapes How You Think With A Quote From Huckleberry Finn

Language shapes the way how you think in many ways. An example of how language shapes the way you think lies in the book “ The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn”. A quote that explains how language shapes how you think is “Why, Huck, doan de French people talk the same way we does?” “No, Jim; you couldn’t understand a word they said- not a single word.” “ Well, now, I be ding-busted! How do dat come?” “ I don’t know; but it’s so. I got some of their jabber out of a book. Spose a man was to come to you and say Polly-voo-franzy - what would you think?” “ I wouldn’t think nuff’n; I’d take en bust him over de head. Dat is, if he warn’t white. I wouldn’t low no nigger to call me dat.” “Shucks, it aint calling you anything. It’s only saying do you know how to talk French.” “Well den, why couldn’t he say it?” “ Why he is a-saying it. That’s Frenchman’s way of saying it.” This quote relates perfectly to one of Whorf’s theories that state that if a language has no word for a certain concept, then its speakers would not be able to understand this concept. Jim did not understand what Huck meant when he said “polly-voo-frenzy” because he was not familiar with the word and did not know what it meant. Jim thought that the word was offensive before Huck told him what it meant because he had never heard the word before. If Huck had said that to a French man, then he would have simply replied oui, which means yes. The French man would not get angry like Jim did, because he understood the meaning of the word.
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