Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Blues of Aratus

Selina Stewart. 2006. In M.A. Harder, R. F. Reguit, and C. G. Wakker (eds.), Beyond the Canon, Peeters, Leuven, Belgium. pp. 319-344.

Discussion of Greek kuaneos and glaukos, arguing that these words are not polysemic in the sense that they do not have a color sense that is separable from other associated senses (eg "deep" or "threatening" for kuaneos). However, all her arguments rest on eliciting these supposed non-color senses of the words from the context -- that is by saying that the referents of the words are "deep" or "threatening." But if these meanings are present in the context, why do we need to suppose that they are a part of the meaning of the word? Most of her contextual translations of the color terms are just that -- translations of the context, and not the word.

Good bibliography of history of scholarship on Greek color terms.

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