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The meaning of subjective values objectively

  1. Feb 5, 2006 #1
    One thing I can't seem to get my head around is why for example, some words are "better" than others.
    Like many people would agree that in the english language, the word "radium" is a "better" word than "uklikan."
    It sounds better, it looks better, and it rolls better off the tounge.
    Same with music, many people agree that some music is better than other music.
    If you have a drum loop, then bach's music has been said to be "better" than the drum loop.
    But why do so many people agree on this?
    is there some objective value one can extract from such a subjective concept?

    If all subjective values and concepts are subjective only, how can anything be better than anything else?

    As a last example, let's take something really abstract; paintings.
    If people react to detail, complexity, coloring(why are some colors better than others anyway? Who decides these things?), forms, etc, then there must be some objective component we can measure.

    Anyone care to enlighten me? Am I looking at it the wrong way perhaps?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 6, 2006 #2
    The aproach you are using is looking at this individually, which does not work alone. While each person might subjectivly have ideas of what is "better", a collection of people who agree on the same subjective grounds make it appear to be objective. This is what makes cultures different from each other: groups of people agree that certain things are better then others and this fosters a general acceptence of these things to the point where you cease to even consider them, they just are.

    There is also certain properties about things that make them more palatable to humans. Music is very mathematical, a harmonic chord always sounds better then a dissedent chord because of the mathematical properties of the wave frequencies. The same thing can be said of color, language, etc. While these vary from culture to culture, there is a science to art. Usually we can derive this inherent supiriority of different things by studying how they affect our brain and emotions. Here the subjectivism arises becuase each person will be affected differently.

    The disparity is really nothing more then a system of sets where objectivism governs the wider array of objects, and subjectivism governs the more individualistic ideas of these objects.
  4. Feb 6, 2006 #3
    The main reason "radium" sounds better than "uklikan" is that "radium" is an actual word that's part of the English language.
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