„The Germans and I no longer speak the same language.“

Marlene Dietrich Foto
Marlene Dietrich9
deutsch-amerikanische Schauspielerin und Sängerin 1901 - 1992
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„I speak only one language, and it is not my own.“

— Jacques Derrida, Monolingualism of the Other: or, The Prosthesis of Origin

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„I learned to understand their language and to speak it a little.“

— Cyrano de Bergerac French novelist, dramatist, scientist and duelist 1619 - 1655
Context: I learned to understand their language and to speak it a little. Immediately the news spread throughout the kingdom that two little wild men had been discovered. We were smaller than everybody else because the wilderness had provided us with such bad food. And it was a genetic defect that caused us to have forelimbs that weren't strong enough to support us. This belief gained strength through repetition despite the priests of the country. They opposed it, saying that it was an awful impiety to believe that not only animals but monsters might be of the same species as they.

Jacob Bronowski Foto
Ulysses S. Grant Foto

„I believe that our Great Maker is preparing the world, in His own good time, to become one nation, speaking one language, and when armies and navies will be no longer required.“

— Ulysses S. Grant 18th President of the United States 1822 - 1885
Context: The subject of acquisition of territory must have the support of the people before I will recommend any proposition looking to such acquisition. I say here, however, that I do not share in the apprehension held by many as to the danger of governments becoming weakened and destroyed by reason of their extension of territory. Commerce, education, and rapid transit of thought and matter by telegraph and steam have changed all this. Rather do I believe that our Great Maker is preparing the world, in His own good time, to become one nation, speaking one language, and when armies and navies will be no longer required.

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„It may be that, like things which speak to themselves in their language of things, language does not speak of things or of the world: it may speak only of itself and to itself.“

— Octavio Paz Mexican writer laureated with the 1990 Nobel Prize for Literature 1914 - 1998
Context: Fixity is always momentary. But how can it always be so? If it were, it would not be momentary — or would not be fixity. What did I mean by that phrase? I probably had in mind the opposition between motion and motionlessness, an opposition that the adverb always designates as continual and universal: it embraces all of time and applies to every circumstance. My phrase tends to dissolve this opposition and hence represents a sly violation of the principle of identity. I say “sly” because I chose the word momentary as an adjectival qualifier of fixity in order to tone down the violence of the contrast between movement and motionlessness. A little rhetorical trick intended to give an air of plausibility to my violation of the rules of logic. The relations between rhetoric and ethics are disturbing: the ease with which language can be twisted is worrisome, and the fact that our minds accept these perverse games so docilely is no less cause for concern. We ought to subject language to a diet of bread and water if we wish to keep it from being corrupted and from corrupting us. (The trouble is that a-diet-of-bread-and-water is a figurative expression, as is the-corruption-of-language-and-its-contagions.) It is necessary to unweave (another metaphor) even the simplest phrases in order to determine what it is that they contain (more figurative expressions) and what they are made of and how (what is language made of? and most important of all, is it already made, or is it something that is perpetually in the making?). Unweave the verbal fabric: reality will appear. (Two metaphors.) Can reality be the reverse of the fabric, the reverse of metaphor — that which is on the other side of language? (Language has no reverse, no opposite faces, no right or wrong side.) Perhaps reality too is a metaphor (of what and/or of whom?). Perhaps things are not things but words: metaphors, words for other things. With whom and of what do word-things speak? (This page is a sack of word-things.) It may be that, like things which speak to themselves in their language of things, language does not speak of things or of the world: it may speak only of itself and to itself. Ch. 4 Ch. 4 -->

Ella Wheeler Wilcox Foto

„There is no language that love does not speak“

— Ella Wheeler Wilcox American author and poet 1850 - 1919
"Love's Language", Poems of Progress 1913 edition

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