I have these little snapshot memories: my weird collection of encyclopedias at age 5; my very first American Girl book at age 6—the first “real” book I could read all by myself; my journal of words at age 7. I was nicknamed “The Dictionary” in fifth grade, then learned a little Spanish and French in high school before becoming fluent in Portuguese in college. I majored in English and loved it, but switched to Communications because I loved it even more.
It wasn’t just literature. It wasn’t just reading. It was the words…their meaning…the exchange.
Why convey meaning? To learn, to understand. To build and create. To foster relationships. To teach our children. To entertain—and to manipulate. The list is, very literally, endless.
This is my passion. The little couplings that turn all my quirky childhood habits and wonderings into a narrative that makes sense. The words!
It’s why I take my job as a book editor so seriously. What are you saying? More importantly, why? Is it clear? Is it compelling?
The power of language is demonstrated in art and politics, school and work, interpersonal and group dynamics, and everywhere else you look. Most recently, I’ve come across a few insta-favorites that explain this power better than I can. Why is language so important? And where does this power come from?
See for yourself.
Arrival – Here’s the trailer to get a taste, but you must watch the movie. Then watch it again.
Allegro commercial – Polish grandpa learns English. And we all feel all the feels.
The 5 Love Languages – Timeless and compelling. Do yourself (and your loved ones) a favor and read it.
This picture from Burning Man:
We haven’t tried this one ourselves, but how about the rice experiment? Our words–and our thoughts–may have even more power than we think.
How have you seen the power of words demonstrated through written or visual art? What are some of your favorites?
Let’s talk. <3 MJ