Young Philosophers:
What Is Language?
May 12

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“Life has never been normal,” wrote C. S. Lewis in an address to students at the outset of World War II. If we are waiting for a better time to pursue truth, goodness, and beauty, we may never get started. In the Young Philosophers series, Gutenberg College opens its (virtual) doors to high-school-age participants for thoughtful online discussion of important ideas.

What makes you think that we speak the same language? In this academic year’s final session of Young Philosophers, we turn our attention to the one thing that every philosophical discussion begins with: language itself. Is it just a bunch of arbitrary signs made up by people no wiser than we are? What, if anything, do abstractions like humanity refer to? Can two people ever really be sure that they are talking about the same thing? Join us as we consider questions like these alongside Scottish philosopher Thomas Reid with his “philosophy of common sense.”

Attendee Requirements: High-school age
Maximum Attendees: 12



Chris Alderman

Leading this session of Young Philosophers will be Chris Alderman. Chris Alderman is a tutor at Gutenberg College, where he teaches writing, Greek, and German. Chris has self-published two collections of poetry, Poems in Verse and Ephemerides.

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