Being situated seems to need some kind of complement. According to Cambridge Dictionary, it may be used in the following ways:

  • with in/on/near/...
  • with an adverb
  • with a to-infinitive

However, it appears that in the following passage it is not used in any of the above-mentioned ways, and I cannot make sense of the sentence. Am I making a mistake here?

[T]here is no privileged point where one can ground the entire enterprise, and from which one can build up everything else. However, I take it that all knowledge, about logic, as much as anything else, is situated. +

  • You failed to mention a use of the word that's in the link you provided: "in a particular situation: be situated The compensation applies to all investors who are similarly situated." That use isn't followed by a preposition. It's also the use that's used in the passage you quote. – Jason Bassford Aug 13 '19 at 0:20
  • @JasonBassford I intended to mention "similarly situated" by the item "with an adverb". BTW, I can know make sense of the sentence with the help of mRotten's answer and your comment below that. – Kaveh Aug 13 '19 at 7:26

Penelope Rush means that every new piece of information is learned and internalized in our minds in the context of old pieces of information. Her next sentence is something like "We are not, and could never be, tabulae rasa." Tabulae rasa means “blank slate”. In other words, it is not possible to learn something new without the new information being filtered and interpreted through our current opinions and understanding of the world.

As Jason Bassford pointed out in his comment below, “situated” is an intransitive verb, and does not require a direct object, so the usage is correct.

  • Situated is both an intransitive verb and an adjective. As an adjective, it's synonymous with located and would normally be referencing some kind of physical object. (A possible use is: "We won't get going until you're situated.") I'd say it's being used adjectivally here too, albeit figuratively. Even if literary license is being used (and the sentence itself is unusually constructed in any case), I don't have a problem understanding what's being said. In that sense, I have no issue with it. – Jason Bassford Aug 13 '19 at 0:19

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.