Language is a symbolic system | Language is a system of symbols



Many animals and even plant species communicate with each other. Human beings are not unique in this ability. However, human language is unique in symbolic communication systems that are learning rather than biologically inherited. Symbols are sounds or things that the user gives them meaning. Initially, the meaning is arbitrarily assigned. For example, the English word “dog” does not have any resemblance to the animal it represents in any way. All symbols have a material form, but their meaning cannot be found only by sensory testing of their form. They are abstract.


A word is one or more sounds, and their combination has a specific meaning specified by the language. The symbolism of words can be so powerful that people are willing to risk their lives or take the lives of others. For example, words such as “queer” and “nigger” have a symbolic meaning, and in today’s America, for many people, it is emotionally high. They are not just a series of our voices.