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Yuriy Makarov about "Language and Violence"

Yuriy Makarov, the participant of UKRAINIAN LITERATURE FESTIVAL at IZOLYATSIA, speaks about festival`s topic Language and Violence

After two hundred years of serious and reliable researches in paleolinguistics, we know of their importance for the intensity reached around the middle of XIX century, when the Paris Linguistic Community was obliged to forbid debate about the origin of human language, avoiding meaningless controversies, as no hypothesis could be proved. Nevertheless, works in this direction didn't stop.
 
The Glottologic theory (which I find to be  the most convincing one) states that the first verbal forms were imperatives. Go! Give! Take! This means that spoken language originated as a mechanism of dominance, obeisance, inhibition, suggestion, and only though evolution was it discovered that it could also serve other functions: describing, explaining, communicating ideas.
 
Here we find the essential ambivalence accompanying our cultural evolution: on one hand, language is the priviledged instrument for dialog, preventing  direct conflict, the confrontation  inside the tribe. On the other hand – it nurtures generational confrontation, the seminal seed of aggression. To overcome such curse we have to learn from evolution: aggression is always laconic. Detailed and compound sentences rarely lead to fight (though they can contribute to it). 

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