Posted on Jan 17, 2017
SPC David Stephenson
18.5K
29
30
8
8
0
57f87bc1
In examining the effects of war I was curious about any possible consequences of “linguistic relativity” when applied to military terminology. While linguistic relativity has been abandoned and criticized by many over the decades some psychologists and anthropologists continue to argue that differences in a language's structure and words may play a role in determining how we think. While terms and acronyms like CoC, IC, and C2 are rather benign and more obscure to the civilian population there are other terms that convey a heavier, more militarized message like rules of engagement. This is actually the title of a TV sit-com that has absolutely nothing to do with war. Due to constant coverage such terms have become common place within our sociolinguistics on a global scale. I’m curious if our language has played a part in either supporting the insurgency narrative as well has had any societal impacts due to the enculturation of military terminology. Are we speaking the language or love or our we speaking the language of war?
https://qz.com/847577/our-casual-use-of-military-jargon-is-normalizing-the-militarization-of-society/
Edited >1 y ago
Avatar_feed
Responses: 9
SGT AH-64 Attack Helicopter Repairer
2
2
0
An interesting concept and I fully understand what you are getting at. IMO I would say there is an effect, but would not say it's to blame.
(2)
Comment
(0)
SGT AH-64 Attack Helicopter Repairer
SGT (Join to see)
>1 y
SPC David Stephenson - Whew thats a mouthful lol I think the magnitude is known by how much such language seems into the mainstream and culture of a society.

On the bilinguals... Possibly and most likely as a person does take on some attributes of the gaining culture thru language in a way....and on the relationships... very good question I would have to put more thought into.
(0)
Reply
(0)
SPC David Stephenson
SPC David Stephenson
>1 y
On the relationships that seems rather obvious. Do people hang out with other people and interact while not understanding a lick of what they are saying.
(0)
Reply
(0)
SGT AH-64 Attack Helicopter Repairer
SGT (Join to see)
>1 y
To answer concerning relationships I would say as long as its coupled with culture. Morphing all into one is not feasible per se as then it takes away that individuality which makes the difference SPC David Stephenson -
(0)
Reply
(0)
SGT AH-64 Attack Helicopter Repairer
SGT (Join to see)
>1 y
SPC David Stephenson - If one is an anthropologist maybe lol
(0)
Reply
(0)
Avatar_small
LTC Self Employed
2
2
0
The language of not knowing the language and the language of Rebellion and thinking we're going to turn into a police state like the movie 1984 horror The Hunger Games what feeds into some of this lack of understanding. The people should look at police states of Russia China and even turkey as an example of how good we are generally compared to countries that oppress their citizens
(2)
Comment
(0)
SPC David Stephenson
SPC David Stephenson
>1 y
While I agree we have it good comparatively speaking, what about all the recent examples of civil unrest here in the US seen either do to police shooting or politics? As well all the regime change in the Middle East.
(1)
Reply
(0)
Avatar_small
MSG Brad Sand
1
1
0
SPC David Stephenson,
First, for your question of 'Is language to blame for the militarization of society' we would have to believe we are see the 'the militarization of society' and I do not see that at all. I might give you that we are seeing the radicalizing of segments of our society, but that is greatly different than militarization? As a military forum, picture in your own mind how most...all...these radical would do in a military setting?
I think the militarization or radicalizing has very little to with 'military like' language, and this confirmed with realization that the number of veterans within our society continues to plummet reducing the amount of 'military like' language. In regards to language, the lowering of the levels of language standards across the spectrum may be the real problem...but could also just be an example of a total lowering of standards across the culture? People today, in my opinion, have lower grasp of the English language, 'OMG, can U beleave what he just said?', and no regard to the actual consequences and responsibility of what they post in a public forum?
(1)
Comment
(0)
SPC David Stephenson
SPC David Stephenson
>1 y
I agree lower standards impacts us all negatively. What I'm trying to suggest is that words help shape our thoughts. When I look at 9/11 I can't help wondering about the impacts of the word jihad had. Would you agree that it helped shape the actions of those that carried out those attacks. Even more provoking would the world be a safer place without just one 5 letter word.
(0)
Reply
(0)
MSG Brad Sand
MSG Brad Sand
>1 y
SPC David Stephenson
I do not disagree with the statement that 'words help shape our thoughts' because words are the building blocks of man's communication and communication is foundation of thought, with this said it was not the impact of the word 'jihad' on the morning of September 11th 2001 that was the issues as much as it was the realization of there is evil in the World and how helpless we actually are against such monster when they are left to plan unmolested. We can discuss jihad till we are blue in the face, because we are not a culture of action, but reaction. The place would not be any safer without one, or a dozen, such words because it is not the word that is the problem but the action behind it. The problem with words in our current culture, is that too many think that words, alone, are enough. We have forgotten the rhyme of our childhood, "Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me" and have a generation that believe that they should be protected from words they do not like...especially those words stating the truth...and that they should be allowed to flee to their safe places when faced with those words.
(0)
Reply
(0)
Avatar_small

Join nearly 2 million former and current members of the US military, just like you.

close