Language and Intention

  • David M. Allen
Part of the Critical Issues in Psychiatry book series (CIPS)


At the beginning of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit, a normally unadventurous fellow named Bilbo is standing in front of his home when a rather mys­terious looking old man happens by. Bilbo wishes a good morning to the stranger. To Bilbo’s surprise, the outsider does not return the greeting in the expected fashion. Instead, the newcomer questions the meaning of Bilbo’s statement. He inquires whether Bilbo intends to wish him a good morning or to state that it is a good morning whether or not either of them wants it to be. Or does “good morning” mean that it is he, Bilbo, who feels good that morning or that it is a morning on which to be good? Bilbo, a bit perplexed, answers that he means all of those things at once.


Family System Conscious Deliberation Reflexive Behavior Automatic Pilot Cooperative Principle 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • David M. Allen
    • 1
  1. 1.BurbankUSA

Personalised recommendations