language-game
The pattern of activities and practices associated with some particular family of linguistic expressions. The notion is associated with the later philosophy of Wittgenstein, encouraging us to think of the use of language in terms of a rule-governed, self-contained practice, like a game. Such a comparison enables us to avoid simplistic theories of what we accomplish with language. The notion has uneasy associations with a certain kind of relativism, the link being that games are worth playing for themselves alone, and have no point outside themselves and the satisfactions they give to participants. The worrying implication would seem to be that if, for instance, the religious language-game is found to be worthwhile, then that would seem to settle the question of the value, and even the truth, of the remarks made using it. See also pragmatism.

Philosophy dictionary. . 2011.

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