Lexis

LEXIS is ‘style of speech’. In a general way, this ancient Greek word is the equivalent of ‘speech’, ‘diction’, ‘expression’.

Our philosophical approach to everyday life is diligent, scrupulous and attentive. Therefore, we include the right way of speaking among the several activities we want to perform in full awareness. In fact, in a speech, not only contents are important. Equally important are the stylistic way and the refinement of expression. Hence, being careful in speaking (what we say and how we say it) is not a marginal thing. In a philosophical life, even the way we speak is crucial, along with many other behaviours. It is important the way we breath, the way we walk, the way we eat, the way we drink. Even our ways in laughing or sitting are not secondary. Because our philosophy requires scrupulousness in all we do. And such an imperative is visible and valid particulary when we apply it to small details. Or when we implement it on the things apparently less important.

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For Platon (Plato) <lexis> is ‘style of speech’. He says that it includes <mimesis> (imitation) and <diegesis> (narrative). According to Gerard Genette, “Plato’s theoretical division, opposing the two pure and heterogeneous modes of narrative and imitation, within poetic diction, elicits and establishes a practical classification of genres. And it includes the two distinct modes…and a mixed mode, for example the Iliad“.

In the Greek epic¬†Iliad, by Homer, the “mixed mode” is copious. And Gerald Prince states that <diegesis> in the Iliad is not only fictional storytelling. In fact, it is in combination with the fictional world and the enacting/re-telling of the story. Moreover, <mimesis> in the¬†Iliad is the imitation of everyday, yet fantastical life in Ancient Greece. <Diegesis> and <mimesis> together represent the entire range of <lexis>.