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October 27, 2007

The meaning of 'clarivoyent'

Appropriations posting

You think it's a mispeling of 'clairvoyant'. In a posting yesterday, I said "I feel almost clarivoyent,...." As misspelling, 'clarivoyent' varies with the norm (Chaucer wouldn't know the difference), which is a lexical establishment, that which an accepted dictionary represents. Lexicography has empirically determined the factical norm (i.e., what's normal, in the statistical sense) and declares a common-custom norm, in Habermas' sense of principle D (but as emergent validation, rather than organized validation), in light of etymological background (the legacy of cultural evolution), though sometimes certifying that multiple spellings are widely used. Meanwhile, the lexicologists worry about emerging and fading trends in usage, which contribute to revisions of dictionaries. The Oxford English Dictionary expresses universalistic recommendation for the language (not just representing definitive history), and its calling is universally accepted by English lexicology.

But maybe 'clarivoyent' isn't just a misspelling, but a symptom of something indiscernible in its single instance, being possibly metonymical of tongue-in-cheek narcissism?; metaphorical of linguistic life?; synecdochical of an evolving language?; an ironical indication of human pretense? (Hayden White, father of the once-great History of Consciousness doctoral program as the University of California at Santa Cruz, is well-known for his trope-ical theory of metahistory, i.e., "content of form" in historiography, in terms of these four tropes).

Or maybe 'clairvoyant' is just marginal to my vocabulary, so because interest in clairvoyance is so marginal in my life that yesterday's guiding interest (while keyboarding) in associating Habermas with leading-edge concerns causes me to mis-type ('clari-' for 'clair-') a word I almost never spell ('-voyent' for '-voyant'), and the projective tendency of normal perception causes one to miss the mispeling before posting (as, commonly, writers aren't their own best proofreaders).

Or maybe I've a secreted intimacy with an appeal of futures markets in emerging ideas, born from a futural sense of phenomenological time that's trope-ical of evolving human interest as such, tropeical of a species making its Way, its especially human primordiality (in an anthropic universe), such that I really didn't care how to spell the word correctly, being in that abandon tropeical of mind in nature?