12. The World of Text
The world of text is characteristic of conservativeness; language is, as a matter of fact, has more inertia than other areas of social life. Despite fundamental changes and transformation, language obstinately resists them. Usually only a few new codes, phrases, and metaphors are added which only modify and enrich it a little. A less noticeable quality of text is so-called reduced redundancy. Language, in its form, requires a certain percentage of redundant words, redundant bearers of meanings, as though a repeating padding, more than text. It is necessary since a listener acoustically and visually can catch only a certain part of the speech or text and a part is always guessed. The listener adapts himself to the rhythm of what he hears. Therefore a cer- tain degree of redundancy is required otherwise speech would be intelligible since it would be unbearably tir- 102 ing. We deal here with the human ability to guess and understand the missed or unwritten meanings. It is an ability that can develop alone to a certain extent inde- pendently from the ability to talk or to read in a cer- tain language. It is a case of a strange spiritual ability to understand the whole. We acquire it also in our mother tongue – if at all – for a relatively long time. For exam- ple, after we are back home from a foreign country, from another language environment, this ability is temporar- ily decreased. A written text can be less redundant but it would be also...
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