Friday, February 24, 2012

What is Something

When we desire to know something or want to know what something is it is possible that, sometimes, we already have the name. Nevertheless we do not completely have the thing. We have the name for capitalism; we have the name 'for' economics: the signifier we have; but, maybe not the signified.
     We have the name and there is something that this name stands for, or "represents." This means that there is a name (a word) and a thing (a thing). Usually the thing is "bigger," but not necessarily. The thing that the word represents is usually bigger or vaster that the signifier, the mere word. There are however words that are as big, or bigger, than their things, so it is possible that it works the other way around, too. As an example of that, if I am a 19th century explorer who likes to find new species or new sub-species, and I am excited about a new, sub-species I believe myself to have discovered, the name I make up for this entity I think I have discovered -- "Charlies Sparrow" -- would be bigger that the sub-species if I made an error ---- if it doesn't exist. In the related case of the T.V. show, "Charlies Angels," although we can say it is a T.V. show, a T.V. show is just a kind of an electronic illusion-thing, and the name is more on par with, equal to, its signified, its thing. Here both name and thing are each as real or as big as the other, and this is, of course, Hollywood stuff --- a world where the "thing" and the "name" emanate at the same time. Or, perhaps the "thing itself" manifests later, subsequent to its' "idea" or "name." In Hollywood, someone comes up with an idea, then they create a finished product.
      In the case of economics these are some things that we should bring under consideration. In economics and capitalism we have the name, which is a matter of language, but we may not be quite sure what the thing that language refers to actually is. (We have the language; whereas the "thing" out there is somewhat ambiguous. It is harder to pin down.) That thing "out there" is certainly not a mistake or a fantasy. Nor is it a T.V. show, needless to say. We are reasonably certain "economics" is out there. It is not just a word. Nor is the word equally as "large" as the thing "out there." But we still have a (much) better grasp of the name ("capitalism" or "economics") than we do of the thing----can we just admit this?

No comments:

Post a Comment