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From Words that Polarize to Words that Mediate

June 2010
More details
  • Publisher
    Mercury Press
  • Published
    1st June 2010
  • ISBN 9781957569079
  • Language English
  • Pages 40 pp.
  • Size 5.5" x 8.5"

Michael Howard reminds us that polarization is ubiquitous in our time. In the realm of language, this polarization comes to expression through synonyms and antonyms. But the world is not as black-and-white as it appears. Fortunately, language is rich in words that bridge and mediate polar extremes. However, these words are not as prominent in our speaking and thinking as synonyms and antonyms. Consequently, we do not apply them in our practical affairs as fully as we could.

By its very title this booklet proposes the term mesonym for “words in the middle, words that mediate.” A thesaurus of mesonyms would be a resource for becoming more conscious of this dimension of language, and perhaps open us to less polarized ways of thinking and acting. The author offers examples that clarify the nature and practical value of mesonyms. In itself it is a modest introduction to a larger enterprise but the author hopes it will inspire others to develop it further.

Michael Howard

Michael Howard, born in Vancouver, BC, in 1946, began sculpting at the age of fifteen. He received his B.F.A. from Eastern Michigan University and his M.A. in Fine Arts from Columbia Pacific University. He has studied the work of Rudolf Steiner since 1969. For thirty years, Michael has made an independent study of Rudolf Steiner’s sculpture and taught primarily in Waldorf schools and anthroposophic centers, both in Europe and North America. Since 1985, he has taught sculpture at Sunbridge College in Spring Valley, New York. He is the leader of the Visual Art Section of the Anthroposophical Society in North America.