Federico Croci

The Seduction and the Charm of the Speech. A Theoretical Investigation about the Origin and the Status of Language Starting from Plato's «Cratylus»

  • Abstract

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Keywords: Plato; Cratylus; Language; Naturalism; Conventionalism.

The article develops a theoretical investigation about the origin of the language and the problem of the ὀρϑοέπεια, starting from Plato's "Cratylus". Following Socrates in his argumentation, the article analyses the aporias which are caused by both interpretations (naturalist and conventionalist) of the relation between names and things. A great importance is given to the etymological section. The aporetical conclusion is clear: it is impossible to prove the origin of the language in the language or by means of the language. The direct experience of reality is not identifiable to the infinity of the linguistic games. Only the Socratic laugh has the capacity to dissolve the seduction of the sophistic syllogisms: Eros, the amphibolic demon who is icon of the language's amphibolic nature, reveals himself as the way to emancipate humanity from the prison, beautiful and dangerous, of Logos.

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