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New from Oxford University Press!


It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

New from Cambridge University Press!


Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Book Information


Title: Language and Religion
Subtitle: A Journey into the Human Mind
Written By: William Downes

Language and Religion offers an innovative theory of religion as a class of
cultural representations, dependent on language to unify diverse capacities
of the human mind. It argues that religion is widespread because it is
implicit in the way the mind processes the world, as it determines what we
ought to do, practically and morally, to achieve our goals. Focusing on the
world religions, the book relates modern cognitive theories of language and
communication to culture and its dissemination. It explains basic features
of religion such as the supernatural, the normative, abstract and ideal
theological concepts such as ‘God', and religious feeling. It develops a
linguistic theory, based on how utterances are understood, of metaphysical
and moral ‘mysteries' and their key role in thought and action. It shows
how such concepts gain strength in the light of their successful use, and
when tempered by criticism, can also have genuine authority.

Publication Year: 2010
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
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BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Pragmatics
Cognitive Science
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Format: Hardback
ISBN: 0521792231
ISBN-13: 9780521792233
Prices: U.K. £ 60.00
U.S. $ 99.00