A User's Guide to Thought and Meaning.
Oxford University Press, 2012. 288p. Hardback. Ray Jackendoff has an uncanny ability to ask interesting and pressing questions. Anyone interested in language and thought should ask such questions. The asking itself is the primary intellectual act - that, and of course the ordering of the asking, which is by no means obvious and constantly problematical, as he well knows and kindly informs the reader. As for providing answers, pivotal questions may have answers, but they are complex and never simple and thus require extremely careful expression. In his effort to treat his readers in a way that is warm and friendly, he sometimes employs phrases (kind of, sort of, well, like, and other things relaxed speakers tend to say) which I do not find essential, but which for others will surely have the effect of making the issues clear and comprehensible. Peter Bloom, Professor of Humanities, Smith College (Publisher's information).