Analysis Of ' Landspeak ' By Robert Macfarlane Essay

794 Words Feb 18th, 2016 4 Pages
In his short essay “Landspeak,” presented on the website Orion Magazine, Robert Macfarlane delves into the powerful connection language elicits in humans to nature. Macfarlane begins his essay by iterating how words are falling into disuse. He then uses the obscure vernacular for animals and scenery to give voice to the almost orphic connection naming nature gives. By illustrating these specific examples, Macfarlane proves language is a strong tool to identify and relate to the earth and also illustrates how this “word magic” can potentially bring a desire to better care for the world. Today, there is an overvaluing of technology which is separating humans from nature for the first time in history. Macfarlane begins his essay by describing how a Gaelic nature book that used folk names which many “had fallen into disuse.” Linguistically, the disuse of common land terms makes sense as the world becomes progressively developed. “Children are now (and valuably) adept ecologists of the technoscape,” Macfarlane continues as he describes how generations are losing touch with the outside world. As human culture becomes more western based, the value of learning about local wildlife is obscured by the increasing competition of job markets that focus on technical skills and the English language. Periphery cultures all over the world are losing touch with words that have defined their way of life for centuries. Linguistic anthropologists are hard pressed to record these nature…

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