The Effect of Language on Perception

The Effect of Language on Perception
Language is defined as any body which can be written, spoken, or otherwise communicated between individuals and/or groups. Taking this definition into account, language is not specific to human beings. Animals are also affected by a form of language. Body language is also a notable form of communication. It is a member of the type of language communicated via implication. This means, it is not directly said or even said at all. It is all interpreted form the perspective of the audience. Perception: Perception is hereby defined as the way in which we see the world. This includes how we tend to view different things. It also incorporates the view point or perspective from which we view the world. In this way, our perception is closely related to reason and logical thinking. Depending on how we view something, it affects the decisions we make. Perspective: Perspective is from which stand point or angle one observes an event. In relation to perception, perception is the ?what? you observe, and perspective is from which view point you observe it. Peoples? being prone to manipulation allows for the use of language to alter their views of certain things. Using different techniques and devices, it is possible to change or influence the way people see things. A common example is in advertising. Often in commercials and on billboards, etc. the marketers attempt to relate to you by associating you with a certain group of people. A previous example brought up by Ms. Bishop reveals what effect this may have on a person. The Porsche add included you with a group of elite people by use of the word, ?us?. Just using this one word changes the entire message of the add. It now not only says that the elites buy this car, it infers you are an elite thus implying that you should buy this car. The language here changes your viewpoint on the type of people who buy this vehicle. Instead of assuming that only the elite people buy it, it makes you see it from the perspective of yourself being one of the elites. This type of manipulation is used all throughout modern media. Another common way language changes perception is in the courtroom and other debates. In the court, the lawyers ask specific questions with carefully chosen words. The wording of these questions forces the witness to answer in a specific way. This changes the peoples? view of what may have happened. The use of language can evoke different feelings and emotions. (song: public enemy, nwa + a poem) A secondary result of language on perception is that it affects our logical thinking and reason. Language can achieve this affect through two various methods. The first is as you just witnessed, through emotions. By using certain words and phrases, language can evoke certain emotions towards people and other objects or ideas. This affects our perception because it makes us view the situation in a different manner. For example, propaganda statements can cause people to ?hate?, or feel a certain way towards a given group of people. This affects logical thinking and reason in the sense that it predetermines judgments and actions towards that group of people. The second way that perception logical thinking and reason are related is very similar. It categorizes the viewer as a certain type of person or member of a group. It then makes a statement or relation about that group of people which makes one make their judgments as if they were one of that group.

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