By Jenn Webb

Figuring out illustration bargains an available, enticing, and surely interdisciplinary advent to the idea that of illustration. Drawing jointly the tips, practices, and strategies linked to the topic, this ebook places them in old context and demonstrates their relevance to way of life. subject matters contain linguistic and political illustration, artwork and media, and philosophical and cognitive ways.

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Extra info for Understanding Representation (Understanding Contemporary Culture series)

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The bullshitter does not. Perhaps in this respect we can say that the tourism advertisements I described above are bullshit, rather than a lie: they are not concerned with whether their representations are true, only that they will effectively convince tourists to visit the sites they are selling. A con artist, on the other hand, is more likely to be an actual liar: he will be concerned with the truth, and with concealing it. It really isn’t valid, or useful, to talk about misrepresentation as though there were a correct representation against which we could measure it.

Following the same principle of rendering visible something that is hidden and complex, people using language to persuade will often use analogy. For example, environmentalists will talk of the ‘rape’ of the earth, an analogy that brings to mind vulnerable femininity, brute force, violation, and the need for people of goodwill and legal integrity to intervene. These are not ‘true’ images in the sense used by deductive reasoning, and nor are they ‘true’ – mirror image – resemblances, but they are pointers to something that a speaker might wish to posit as true.

He goes on to point out that the LANGUAGE AND REPRESENTATION 41 word ‘barbarian’ is simply the Greek word for foreigner (1987: 2); it does not necessarily imply anything negative. And yet, ‘every man calls barbarous anything he is not accustomed to; it is indeed the case that we have no other criterion of truth or right-reason than the example and form of the opinions and customs of our own country’ (1987: 8). Those opinions and customs are embedded in and expressed in language. So, as Montaigne shows, the word ‘barbarian’ that in fact means simply ‘not Greek’ becomes a signal for everything ‘outside’, everything ‘not like us’.

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