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Download e-book for kindle: A Short History of Structural Linguistics by Peter Matthews

By Peter Matthews

ISBN-10: 0511011504

ISBN-13: 9780511011504

ISBN-10: 0521623677

ISBN-13: 9780521623674

This booklet is a concise historic survey of structural linguistics, charting its improvement from the 1870s to the current day. Peter Matthews examines the beginnings of structuralism and analyzes the important position performed in it by way of the examine of sound structures and the issues of the way platforms switch. He discusses theories of the final constitution of a language, the "Chomskyan revolution" within the Nineteen Fifties, and the structuralist theories of that means. The e-book comprises exposition, particularly, of the contributions of Saussure, Bloomfield and Chomsky.

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Extra resources for A Short History of Structural Linguistics

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In Baudouin’s terminology, they were specifically the ‘phonemes’ of the language. Thus the diphthong of drive was one phoneme (‘Phonem’), the [0] of driven another. But a unit at the psychological level was no longer strictly a sound; it was a mental unit corresponding to sounds. The phoneme, as Baudouin defined it, was ‘a unitary representation in the phonetic domain’ (‘eine einheitliche, der phonetischen Welt angehörende Vorstellung’), ‘which arises in the mind through the mental amalgamation of the impressions received from the pronunciation of one and the same sound’ (‘welche mittlelst psychischer Verschmelzung der durch die Aussprache eines und desselben Lautes erhaltenen Eindrücke in der Seele entsteht’).

Suppose a speaker says ‘I’m hungry. ’ But what distinguishes them, and what is the nature of this unit? Linguistics The autonomy as the of study linguistics of language systems 27 In the traditional definitions, speakers ‘express thoughts’. They do so by combining words; so, in one of the formulae inherited from late antiquity, a sentence or ‘utterance’ (Latin ‘oratio’) is a ‘coherent ordering of words’ (‘ordinatio dictionum congrua’) ‘expressing a complete judgment’ (‘sententiam perfectam demonstrans’) (Priscian in Keil, 1855–9, I: 53).

For Saussure, in Firth’s words, languages were social facts conceived as ‘sui generis and external to and on a different plane from individual phenomena’ (Firth, 1957 [1950]: 179). ‘[T]rue Saussureans, like true Durkheimians, regard the structures Linguistics as sets Languages the study of utterances of language systems 21 formulated by linguistics or sociology as in rebus’ (181). ’ For Firth this made the individual speaker, in his terms, an ‘underdog . . whose speech was not the “integral and concrete object of linguistics” ’ (183, translating Cours, 23).

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A Short History of Structural Linguistics by Peter Matthews


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