Words of Power

Let us imagine a language that would give us direct access to reality. Every utterance in that language would produce or re-create that portion of the world, that actual object or state of affairs, that the utterance signifies. If by uttering the word child you produce and publicly display a child, nobody would deny that your language “hooks onto” reality. Alas, only a divine language, only a magic performative, can produce such special effects. While awaiting a new Prometheus who would steal the divine language for us, we are confined to human language […] The only worlds that human language is capable of creating or producing are possible worlds.

– Lubomír Doležel at his best.

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