Tok Essay

Topics: Meaning of life, Ambiguity, Language Pages: 2 (819 words) Published: October 24, 2011
To what extent is it possible to overcome the double ambiguity and vagueness in language? In what contexts might ambiguity either contribute or impede knowledge? Does the balance between precision and ambiguity alter from one discipline to another?

Knowledge is information that forms the basis for human thoughts and actions. Among these are theories and experiments of scientists, who work together to create our knowledge of the outside world. Knowledge has historically been identified by language, logic and human beliefs. Language is a set of symbols that is used as a form of communication and language performs different functions. Can language be well used without knowledge? For a word to have a meaning in a language knowledge is needed, but this is only for the knowledge needed to write. There are many other languages that are used (eg: Handspeak). Ambiguity is the doubtfulness, particularly as to the meaning of language, arising from a word having more than one meaning and vagueness is when words are not expressed clearly.

As language is a part of reality and thought, ambiguity and vagueness is possible to overcome if the common sense view is used, which is we think first and then we express our thoughts. This is also because language is dependent on thoughts. For example like Ludwig Wittgenstein said for a word to have a meaning in a language there have to be speakers who use the words according to the rules and the person must be able to recognize the rules that direct its use (eg: if you use the word note, you should be sure what type of note you’re talking about. Is it the music note or a short letter). As mentioned before ambiguity means a word having double meaning so this means it does contribute to knowledge as double meanings makes language seem larger in quantity and there are more words are to be at times, so this will be an addition to knowledge as well. When words used in a language have an exact meaning and not an ambiguous...
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