re: Fundamentally flawed

From: Richard Lindeman (
Date: Sat Mar 21 1998 - 09:06:51 EST

Rolf Furuli writes:
>As I see it, there is much truth in your observations. However, looking at
>the text of the NT from the right viewpoint you may see that Aktionsart is
>not what is flawed, but rather (the definitions of) aspect.

OK... since it seems awhile before I will be able to get hold of Fannings
book on Aspect, let me pursue a few more of my questions.

I can accept that my definitions of aspect are flawed. But lets take this a
bit further. What if all these things are fundamentally flawed... our
understanding of tense, aspect, aktionsart, etc... and the reason why they
are all flawed is because we fail to recognize the significance and impact
of context. What if context itself is the only thing which demands anything.
It is not tense that demands, it is not aktionsart which demands, nor is
it aspect which demands anything. But rather it is plain and simple context
which demands all of these things and more. It demands voice and mood as
well. Context demands a verb of a certain aktionsart in a certain tense,
voice, mood. And whenever we think even for a moment that one of these
other things is demanding anything then we miss the boat. Context is the
current on the ocean which moves the freighter with all of its complexities.
Oh yes, there is an engine which is going and straining mightily against a
given context, but in the end it is context which prevails.

So then, what we really need is to understand context. We need to analyze
and categorize context. Aktionsart seems to be attempting to do some of
this from the framework of the verbal root itself and its immediate
surroundings. But we need to do much more than this. We need to map and
analyze and scrutinize context until we know all of its edies and floes...
sort of like the captain of the ship... or like our meteorologists who are
studying the EL NINO... the temperature of the currents in the ocean which
have so powerfully effected our winter months this year.


Rich Lindeman

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