“The bounds of my language, method the bounds of my global” stated thinker Ludwig Wittgenstein, our perceptions of the arena are subsequently limited through the phrases we use. Within the context of our demanding situations round sustainability that is vital, and I’m left considering whether or not english is most likely failing us on this recognize.
Even the phrase ‘sustainability’ itself is hardly ever pink-scorching and inspirationally attractive. You would not need your date to explain you as ‘sustainable’ or ‘environment friendly’ as an example. And we are in peril of over-the use of and mis-the use of this time period to the purpose of meaninglessness as cartoonist XKCD issues out right here. Perhaps different languages supply extra sublime phrases to explain our relationships with the arena, each and every different and our ‘stuff’?
Take ‘hiraeth’ as an example – a singular Welsh phrase with hyperlinks in that means to Portugese ‘Saudade’ (pay attention to this monitor via the past due nice Cesaria Evora for a shifting musical feel of the phrase), that conveys a heady mixture of craving, longing, nostalgia, wistfulness and homesickness, tinged with a unhappiness for a Wales of the earlier. It is a stunning encapsulation of a undeniable pressure of sustainability that seeks a chic simplicity, frequently rooted in ancient revel in, to tackling our demanding situations.
Much more tough in a up to date revolutionary feel is the perception of ‘bodlon’. An immediate try at translation can be ‘satisfied’ or ‘glad’ however the interpretive that means is a lot more delicate. It’s as so much a few feel of ‘sufficient’ or ‘contentment’ in being happy and grateful for what you could have as it’s approximately being merely ‘cheery’.
This connects with the Swedish concept of ‘lagom’. In all probability mis-translated as ‘sufficient’, ‘enough’ or ‘good enough’ lagom method so a lot more than that. Phrases like ‘moderation’ and ‘moderate’ have rather unsizzling bad connotations, while lagom indicates definitely ‘suitable’, and as my Swedish colleagues in our Stockholm place of work might say “Lagom är bäst” – or ‘sufficient is as just right as a banquet’.
It is a pretty means of meaning to ‘simply sufficient’, or to each and every their want, one thing I used to be aiming for in my concept of ‘frucool’ (admittedly a horny unsightly neologism) – a conflation of ‘frugal’ and ‘cool’ (which used to be memorably defined in a touch upon certainly one of my Father or mother blogs as the type of phrase just a ‘Twunt’ may get a hold of!). Nonetheless, it is now my Twitter moniker (@frucool) and I am kind of caught with it!
Even as English is with out query a superbly numerous, kleptomaniac (we do like nicking phrases do not we?) and efficient language, I do marvel that it is very skill to take us into deeply distinct and jargonistic territory probably additional alienates us from probably the most easy pleasures and deep connections in lifestyles that phrases like hiraeth, bodlon and lagom way more eloquently encapsulate.
Have you learnt some other sensible phrases from different languages that supply a selected viewpoint, global view or perception within the context of sustainability in both a ravishing method or which might be expressed with breath-taking brevity?
Please tweet tips to @futerra or @frucool.
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