language

It is nearly 20 years since Martin Seligman used his American Psychological Association presidential address to inaugurate the notion of ‘positive psychology’. The rationale for its creation was Seligman’s contention that psychology had tended to focus mainly on what is wrong...

Longing for Sehnsucht?

I have long been interested in how language carves up the flux of our phenomenological world. For instance, I often wonder whether the limits of my linguistic resources define my experiential horizons. If I lack a label for a...

‘This is a book about the power of language – strong style, single words – to shape our sense of place.’ So begins this field guide to the literature Macfarlane loves, which doubles as a word hoard of wood, water and earth. There are thousands of terms from dozens of...