The Dance of Meaning, Text, and Intention

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3 Responses

  1. Jeff Lipshaw says:

    Another example of the illusion that the meaning of collectively agreed to words used communicatively are infused by any kind of mutual intention. I refer specifically to the “or objects of any sort.” See The Bewitchment of Intelligence: Language and Ex Post Illusions of Intention, 78 Temple L. Rev. 99 (2005).

  2. A.J. Sutter says:

    Actually, I think Nate hit on a possible significant aspect of the story that’s more pragmatic and less implicated with meaning, text or intention. We don’t know anything about the politics of the relationship between Bloch and her fellow members of the board. For example, it could be that she p’d them off by being a very disagreeable person generally, or by incurring some animus over some other specific issue. That back-story might explain why the rule was enforced against her (as often happens to evil viziers in fairy tales and, BTW, in the story of the Jewish festival of Purim as well).

    Of course, I’m agnostic as to whether she really had bad karma in this matter. But I don’t think one necessarily needs to get to the anti-Semitism angle — though see Dan Solove’s post above about literary allusions; surely the board’s lawyers could have used better judgment.

    BTW, “mezuzot” is the plural (in Hebrew for “feminine” nouns) of singular “mezuzah”.

  3. With all due respect to the Court of Appeals, Jewish law clearly requires that a Mezuza be affixed to the right door post of every door, from the outside. Thus no Orthodox Jew could live in a building with rules like those of Shoreline, which seems pretty discriminatory to me. (see, for example,