communication and language are two very different things. That is,
communication does not always require language, and language doesn't always
communicate anything. That's why we need Shmoop to help us understand literary critics, for example. Milne is brilliant at
forcing us to try and figure out what the meaning
is behind verbal and non-verbal communication. But really, that's what all
language is about, right?
Questions About Language and Communication
What's the difference between what the characters say and what they mean?
How do the foils, who know each other very well, communicate
differently than characters who are not so close? E.g. Pooh and Piglet vs. Pooh
Is there a difference between written and spoken language in the
What gives a word meaning for Milne? What about for you? What
kinds of things do you associate with a word like "forest," "play,"
Chew on This
Everyone has a different definition of any given word thanks to
different past experiences. Milne's "bear" is different from yours,
so you can't really relate to these stories as much as you want to.
Milne's linguistic ambiguity (unfinished sentences, nonsense
words, wordplay) is probably too complex for his young readers to understand.
He's writing more for adults than for kids.