Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I may be wrong but much of the way I learned to categorise was with a tree structure, best represented by the tree of life. A man is a male member of the human species of the primate genre of the mammal branch etc... Each of these distinctions being fairly exclusive.

i.e. when dividing within a group we tend to search for the overarching difference between the different parts, with an essentialist approach ; we create "muslim" and "jew" categories, despite the fact that many muslims and many jews used to share the same culture. Black and White categories - where does the north of Africa fit ? Fruit and produce - and endless debate about the status of the tomato.

Categories and nuance don't fit well together. It seems to go back to the Platonician ideal - instances are supposed to be a representation of a theoretical  and perfect idea, which represents the truth. Thus, as we build representations, we are unable to detach the instance from its ideal, and admit that different categories often overlap.

Un roi sans divertissement est un homme plein de misères

by linca (antonin POINT lucas AROBASE gmail.com) on Tue Jan 1st, 2008 at 05:56:45 PM EST
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