reading question

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Taka

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The sentences (sorry, a bit long)

I took university to be more or less a continuation of school, and professors to be the next level up of a schoolmaster, people who lived their lives in closed institutions devoting all their working energies to the same sort of subjects as were pursued in school classrooms: Latin, Greek, history, geography--I found these subjects easy to "do", but had never seen much point in doing them. What seemed to me to penetrate life to the core--and therefore to be, ultimately, what living is for, in addition to relationship with other people--was the creation and absorption of works of art.

This, then, was my general standpoint when I was a teenager; and looking at life from this position I was unable to understand people who were interested in academic pursuits. It seemed to me there must be something drastically limited about them, for only people to whom all these things meant little or nothing could imagine that what went on in classrooms and lecture halls was the stuff of life.


Question: What does "these things" refer to? IMO, it refers to "works of art", but I think it's kind of distant to be referred to by "these". Plus, it's in a different paragraph. Is it possible for "these" to refer to such a distant thing? Is it possible for "these" to point to words in a different paragraph?
 

Taka

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Casiopea

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This (the creation and absorption of works of art), then, was my general standpoint when I was a teenager; and looking at life from this position I was unable to understand people who were interested in academic pursuits. It seemed to me there must be something drastically limited about them, for only people to whom all these things (i.e. the ever present "things" relating to and resulting from the creation and absorption of works of art meant little or nothing could imagine that what went on in classrooms and lecture halls was the stuff of life.[/i]
 

Taka

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Hmm... :? OK, what do you think, Mike sensei?
 

Taka

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Casiopea said:
Taka said:
Hmm... :? OK, what do you think, Mike sensei?

Thanks, Taka. :lol:

:lol: No disrespect intended, Cas. It's just that I just need as much advice as possible.
 

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Francois said:
Nothing comes between Taka and her Mike.

FRC

To tell you the truth, I'm male. And I'm not one of those kind of people. :lol: :lol: :lol:
 

Casiopea

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Taka said:
Casiopea said:
Taka said:
Hmm... :? OK, what do you think, Mike sensei?

Thanks, Taka. :lol:

:lol: No disrespect intended, Cas. It's just that I just need as much advice as possible.

That's terrifically understandable; that's how we learn, right? :D Mike is a great source of knowledge.

Oh, by the way, even though I'm Canadian and female, my students here, in Japan, call me Cas sensei. :wink:
 

Taka

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tdol, what do you think?
 

Tdol

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I agree with Cas, but can see why it's not very clear. What do you think? ;-)
 

Taka

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tdol said:
I agree with Cas, but can see why it's not very clear. What do you think? ;-)

I think words referred to by "this/these" have to be somewhere around the reference term, but in this case I cannot find any. And if anywhere, I find "work of art" as the words pointed to by "these", which is in the other paragraph.

So, my question is (again): is it possible for "these" to refer to such a distant thing? Is it possible for "these" to point to words in a different paragraph?

Plus, if you know why it's not very clear, tdol, please tell me why.
 

Tdol

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They normally refer to something near, so it isn't very good usage, but in the absence of anything near, then the logical thing is to retrace until the point of reference is found. It isn't very clear because of the distance. ;-)
 

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tdol said:
They normally refer to something near, so it isn't very good usage, but in the absence of anything near, then the logical thing is to retrace until the point of reference is found. It isn't very clear because of the distance. ;-)

It has to do with pragmatics. :D

'these things' mean, things that are important to me. Things I hold to be important; things I'm thinking of and presently writing about; that's the closest, logical point of reference. :D
 

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Casiopea said:
It has to do with pragmatics. :D

'these things' mean, things that are important to me.

If there were no referent clearly stated in the sentences, I would take the same approach as Casiopea's. Yet there is "works of art", which should be the referent. If "works of art" were in the same paragraph, I wouldn't doubt it was the referent. But as it is it's in a different paragraph and a bit distant for "these", and that's why I was confused.

But thanks to the tdol's comments, now I understand why I was confused.

Thank you, teachers! :D
 

Tdol

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You're welcome. ;-)
 
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