A Word-and-Flesh Profession: A Response to White and Brueggemann

11 Pages Posted: 5 Nov 2011

Date Written: January 1, 2002


Speech remakes the world through a relationship among words, speaker, and hearer. On one hand, this view of the human encounter as essentially rhetorical precludes an understanding of speech as purely subjectivist or emotivist self-expression. On the other hand, this same view of human speech interaction precludes the understanding of speech acts as mere descriptions of previously discovered or reasoned truth, either empirical or abstract. Professor White reaffirms this triad among words, speaker, and hearer with what he has identified as the “deeply reciprocal” dynamic of language. Professor Brueggemann also describes the speech acts between Moses, Abraham, and their God as community-constituted and relational. The author returns the discussion of this triadic relationship among words, speaker, and hearer. For now, however, she asks the reader to take the “we” language, what Professor Brueggemann has elsewhere termed testimonial, as an invitation to hear what has happened, and what is truth in a legal controversy.

Keywords: Professor White, Professor Brueggemann, human speech interaction, we, triad relationship, speech, testimonial, language

Suggested Citation

Failinger, Marie A., A Word-and-Flesh Profession: A Response to White and Brueggemann (January 1, 2002). Mercer Law Review Vol. 53, p. 1035, 2002, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1929475

Marie A. Failinger (Contact Author)

Mitchell Hamline School of Law ( email )

875 Summit Ave
St. Paul, MN 55105-3076
United States

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