A Survey on the Semantic Field of ‘Vagabond’
Languages of publication
How we perceive a certain concept is grounded in the ‘language game’: the values, prejudices, dispositions, and cultural baggage among its interpretive communities. In other words, there is no ‘true meaning’ inherent in a word per se; rather the meaning is derived out of what Derrida (1993) calls the ‘chain’ of signifi cation: the context, history, contingency, and often semantic contradictions that render a word polysemic. Taking off from here, this paper seeks to unpack the social ‘constructivism’ immanent in the a priori assumptions that cloak the idea of the ‘vagabond’. While invoking the contingency in the genesis and semantic history of ‘vagabond’ as a case study, this paper illustrates how meanings of certain heuristic concepts – in this case, ‘vagabond’, without a fixed referent – are often (re)configured, not because of reasons entirely linguistic, but rather due to changes in the prevailing epistemic paradigms.
- (a) Documents and Reports
- A Chronology of State Medicine, Public Health, Welfare and Related Services in Britain 1066–1999. Compiled by Michael D Warren. 2000. Web. 3 March 2017. Faculty of Public Health Medicine of the Royal Colleges of Physicians
- of the United Kingdom. <http://goo.gl/3XW36t>
- The Oriental Herald. Vol 4. No 13. January 1825. Web. 3 March 2017. <Google Books>
- The Poor Law 1535. Chapter 25. Web. 3 March 2017. <http://goo.gl/Rlpbzl>
- (b) Dictionaries:
- Middle English Dictionary. <https://quod.lib.umich.edu/m/med/> 20 April 2017.
- Oxford English Dictionary. <http://www.oed.com/> 20 April 2017.
- (c) Other:
- Cole, William. Ed. 1825. The Poetical Works of William Cowper. London: William Cole.
- Derrida, Jacques. 1993. “Structure, Sign, and Play in the Discourse of the Human Sciences.” A Postmodern Reader. Ed. Joseph Natoli, and Linda Hutcheon.Albany: State University of New York. 223–242.
- Foucault, Michel. 1972. Archaeology of Knowledge. London: Tavistock.
- Foucault, Michel. 1995. Discipline and Punish. New York: Random House.
- Foucault, Michel. 2012. The Birth of The Clinic. London and New York: Routledge.
- Foucault, Michel. 2013. Madness and Civilization. New York: Vintage.
- Foucault, Michel. ed. 1982. I, Pierre Rivière, Having Slaughtered My Mother, My Sister, and My Brother: A Case of Parricide in the 19th Century. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press.
- Hacking, Ian. 1998. Mad Travelers: Refl ections on The Reality of Transient Mental Illness. Charlotteville and London: University Press of Virginia.
- Halliwell-Phillipps, James Orchard. Ed. 1840. A Selection of Minor Poems of Dan John Lydgate. London: Percy Society.
- Hazlitt, William. Ed. 1843. The Works of Daniel Defoe. Vol. 3.. London: John Clements.
- Hooker, Richard. Trans. 1996. “The Decameron, Introduction”. < http://goo.gl/9M0Fla> 3 March 2017.
- Kant, Immanuel.  1929. Critique of Pure Reason. Trans. Norman Kemp Smith. London: Macmillan.
- Martineau, Harriet. 1833. Illustrations of Political Economy. Vol 8. London: Charles Fox.
- Mitford, John. Ed. 1851. The Works of John Milton. Vol 4. London: William Pickering.
- Russell, Bertrand. 1999. History of Western Philosophy. New York: Routledge.
- Williams, Raymond. 1983. Keywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society. New York: Oxford University Press.
- Wittgenstein, Ludwig. 2009. Philosophical Investigations. Malden: Wiley-Blackwell.
Publication order reference