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4 books about Ordinary [sort by author]      

Extraordinary from the Ordinary: Personal Experience Narratives in American Sign Language
Kristin J. Mulrooney
Gallaudet University Press, 2009

Personal narratives are one way people code their experiences and convey them to others. Given that speakers can simultaneously express information and define a social situation, analyzing how and why people structure the telling of personal narratives can provide insight into the social dimensions of language use. In Extraordinary from the Ordinary: Personal Experience Narratives in American Sign Language, Kristin Jean Mulrooney shows that accounts by Deaf persons expressed in ASL possess the same characteristics and perform the same function as oral personal narratives.

Mulrooney analyses12 personal narratives by ASL signers to determine how they “tell”  their stories. She examines the ASL form of textual narration to see how signers use lexical signs to grammatically encode information, and how they also convey perceived narration. In perceived narration, the presenter depicts a past occurrence in the immediate environment that allows the audience to partially witness and interpret the event. Mulrooney determined that ASL narratives reveal a patterned structure consisting of an introduction, a main events section for identifying and describing past events, and a conclusion. They also can include background information, an explication section in which the presenter expands or clarifies an event, and a section that allows the presenter to explain his or her feelings about what happened. Liberally illustrated with photographs from videotaped narratives, Extraordinary from the Ordinary offers an engrossing, expansive view of personal narratives embodying the unique linguistic elements of ASL.

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In Quest of the Ordinary: Lines of Skepticism and Romanticism
Stanley Cavell
University of Chicago Press, 1988

These lectures by one of the most influential and original philosophers of the twentieth century constitute a sustained argument for the philosophical basis of romanticism, particularly in its American rendering. Through his examination of such authors as Emerson, Thoreau, Poe, Wordsworth, and Coleridge, Stanley Cavell shows that romanticism and American transcendentalism represent a serious philosophical response to the challenge of skepticism that underlies the writings of Wittgenstein and Austin on ordinary language.
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Out Of The Ordinary: Folklore and the Supernatural
Barbara Walker
Utah State University Press, 1995

This contributed volume explores the functions of belief and supernatural experience within an array of cultures, as well as the stance of academe toward the study of belief and the supernatural. The essays in this volume call into question the idea that supernatural experience is extraordinary.

Among the contributors are Shelley Adler, David Hufford, Barre Toelken, and Gillian Bennett.

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Wittgenstein's Ladder: Poetic Language and the Strangeness of the Ordinary
Marjorie Perloff
University of Chicago Press, 1996

Marjorie Perloff, among our foremost critics of twentieth-century poetry, argues that Ludwig Wittgenstein provided writers with a radical new aesthetic, a key to recognizing the inescapable strangeness of ordinary language. Taking seriously Wittgenstein's remark that "philosophy ought really to be written only as a form of poetry," Perloff begins by discussing Wittgenstein the "poet." What we learn is that the poetics of everyday life is anything but banal.

"This book has the lucidity and the intelligence we have come to expect from Marjorie Perloff.—Linda Munk, American Literature

"[Perloff] has brilliantly adapted Wittgenstein's conception of meaning and use to an analysis of contemporary language poetry."—Linda Voris, Boston Review

"Wittgenstein's Ladder offers significant insights into the current state of poetry, literature, and literary study. Perloff emphasizes the vitality of reading and thinking about poetry, and the absolute necessity of pushing against the boundaries that define and limit our worlds."—David Clippinger, Chicago Review

"Majorie Perloff has done more to illuminate our understanding of twentieth century poetic language than perhaps any other critic. . . . Entertaining, witty, and above all highly original."—Willard Bohn, Sub-Stance
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