Recent publications in the history and philosophy of linguistics, April-May 2019


James MCELVENNY (ed.). Form and formalism in linguistics, Berlin : Language Science Press, 2019, 288 p. History and Philosophy of the Language Sciences 1. ISBN-13 : 978-3-96110-182-5 / ISBN-13 (hardcover) : 978-3-96110-183-2
Publisher’s website

Capture d’écran 2019-05-24 à 09.08.23
“Form” and “formalism” are a pair of highly productive and polysemous terms that occupy a central place in much linguistic scholarship. Diverse notions of “form” – embedded in biological, cognitive and aesthetic discourses – have been employed in accounts of language structure and relationship, while “formalism” harbours a family of senses referring to particular approaches to the study of language as well as representations of linguistic phenomena. This volume brings together a series of contributions from historians of science and philosophers of language that explore some of the key meanings and uses that these multifaceted terms and their derivatives have found in linguistics, and what these reveal about the mindset, temperament and daily practice of linguists, from the nineteenth century up to the present day.

Table of contents :
Preface
James McElvenny

Visual formalisms in comparative-historical linguistics
Judith Kaplan

Alternating sounds and the formal franchise in phonology
James McElvenny

On Sapir’s notion of form/pattern and its aesthetic background
Jean-Michel Fortis

Linguistics as a “special science”
A comparison of Sapir and Fodor
Els Effers

The impact of Russian formalism on linguistic structuralism
Bart Karstens

The resistant embrace of formalism in the work of Émile Benveniste and AurĂ©lien Sauvageot
John E. Joseph

Linguistics as a science of structure
Ryan M. Nefdt

Formalism, grammatical rules, and normativity
Geoffrey K. Pullum

Linguistic form: A political epistemology
Nick Riemer


Ken HIRSCHKOP. Linguistic Turns, 1890-1950: Writing on language as social theory. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2019. 352 p. ISBN: 9780198745778
Publisher’s website

Linguistic Turns cover
Linguistic Turns rewrites the intellectual and cultural history of early twentieth-century Europe. In chapters that study the work of Saussure, Russell, Wittgenstein, Bakhtin, Benjamin, Cassirer, Shklovskii, the Russian Futurists, Ogden and Richards, Sorel, Gramsci, and others, it shows how European intellectuals came to invest ‘language’ with extraordinary force, at a time when the social and political order of the continent was itself in question. By examining linguistic turns in concert rather than in isolation, the volume changes the way we see them—no longer simply as moves in individual disciplines, but as elements of a larger constellation, held together by common concerns and anxieties. In a series of detailed readings, the volume reveals how each linguistic turn invested ‘language as such’ with powers that could redeem not just individual disciplines but Europe itself. It shows how, in the hands of different writers, language becomes a model of social and political order, a tool guaranteeing analytical precision, a vehicle of dynamic change, a storehouse of mythical collective energy, a template for civil society, and an image of justice itself. By detailing the force linguistic turns attribute to language, and the way in which they contrast ‘language as such’ with actual language, the volume dissects the investments made in words and sentences and the visions behind them. The constellation of linguistic turns is explored as an intellectual event in its own right and as the pursuit of social theory by other means.


Language & History, vol. 62, issue 1, Abingdon : Taylor and Francis, 2019.  Print ISSN: 1759-7536 Online ISSN: 1759-7544
Publisher’s website

Table of Contents :
A historiographical approach to Paul Perny’s grammar of the Chinese language
Xavier Lee-Lee & VerĂłnica C. Trujillo-GonzĂĄlez

The history of the Poqomchi’ language description
Igor Vinogradov

An Italian Grammarian between Paris and London: tradition, competition and methods of pedagogic transmission in the works of Vincenzo Peretti (1795–1803)
Norma Romanelli

Book reviews :
Interpreting in Nazi concentration camps
Hong Diao

Invisibilising Austrian German: on the effect of linguistic prescriptions and educational reforms on writing practices in 18th-century Austria
Olivia Walsh

In Memoriam:
REBECCA POSNER (17 August 1929–19 July 2018)
Wendy Ayres-Bennett


Jean-Marie FOURNIER, AimĂ©e LAHAUSSOIS, ValĂ©rie RABY (eds). Grammaticalia : hommage Ă  Bernard Colombat. Lyon : ENS Éditions, 2019. Langages, 320 p. ISBN : 979-10-362-0085-5
Publisher’s website

490_Lahaussois_COUV.indd
Cet ouvrage prĂ©sente une collection d’études en histoire de la linguistique en hommage Ă  Bernard Colombat, spĂ©cialiste internationalement reconnu des traditions grammaticales latine et française, et maĂźtre d’Ɠuvre de nombreux projets numĂ©riques et Ă©ditoriaux, collectifs et individuels.
Les contributions reflĂštent les intĂ©rĂȘts trĂšs divers de Bernard Colombat et sont articulĂ©es en quatre grandes thĂ©matiques : la catĂ©gorisation des mots, les auteurs et Ɠuvres remarquables dans l’histoire de la linguistique, les outils linguistiques (corpus, dictionnaires, bases de donnĂ©es), enfin des Ă©tudes correspondant Ă  des perspectives transversales. Les sources analysĂ©es couvrent un empan temporel trĂšs large de l’histoire de la linguistique, allant de sources sanskrites, grecques, et latines aux grammaires descriptives modernes, en passant par les traitĂ©s arabes, les manuscrits mĂ©diĂ©vaux, et les grammaires de la Renaissance.
Cette grande diversitĂ© de thĂšmes et de sources fait de l’ouvrage une ressource prĂ©cieuse pour les linguistes non historiens, pour les Ă©tudiants abordant pour la premiĂšre fois ce vaste domaine, et pour un lecteur gĂ©nĂ©raliste : les articles rassemblĂ©s tĂ©moignent de l’ampleur de la carriĂšre scientifique de Bernard Colombat, et de sa capacitĂ© Ă  fĂ©dĂ©rer des recherches trĂšs diverses pour offrir une vision riche et nuancĂ©e de la rĂ©flexion linguistique Ă  travers les Ăąges.
Cette grande diversitĂ© de thĂšmes et de sources fait de l’ouvrage une ressource prĂ©cieuse pour les linguistes non historiens, pour les Ă©tudiants abordant pour la premiĂšre fois ce vaste domaine, et pour un lecteur gĂ©nĂ©raliste : les articles rassemblĂ©s tĂ©moignent de l’ampleur de la carriĂšre scientifique de Bernard Colombat, et de sa capacitĂ© Ă  fĂ©dĂ©rer des recherches trĂšs diverses pour offrir une vision riche et nuancĂ©e de la rĂ©flexion linguistique Ă  travers les Ăąges.


Silvia D’INTINO & Sheldon POLLOCK (dir.). L’espace du sens. Approches de la philologie indienne. Avec la collaboration de MichaĂ«l MEYER. Paris, CollĂšge de France, 2018, 580 p. Publications de l’Institut de Civilisation Indienne, Fasc. 84. Diffusion De Boccard. ISBN : 978-2-86803-084-9.
Publisher’s webpage

PICI-84_couverture-329x500 (1)Pour le philologue, le texte est un « terrain » qu’il entreprend d’explorer dans le menu dĂ©tail et dont il retrace Ă  la fois une gĂ©nĂ©alogie et l’avĂšnement du sens. Il s’agit d’explorer les traditions Ă  l’intĂ©rieur desquelles le texte fait sens, ou contre lesquelles il s’inscrit, de relever aussi tout ce qui se rapporte Ă  son sens — ses origines, ses dĂ©veloppements, ses formes, ses nuances, ses particularitĂ©s. Si le sens d’un texte n’est jamais singulier, et qu’il faut l’envisager comme « la somme des significations qu’il reçoit au cours de son histoire » (S. Pollock), c’est seulement dans un contexte culturel donnĂ© qu’il prend forme. Autant que du temps, le sens d’un texte est une fonction de l’espace, de l’univers et du rĂ©seau Ă  l’intĂ©rieur duquel il est perpĂ©tuĂ©, transformĂ©, reconfigurĂ©. Nous avons essayĂ© de mettre l’accent sur cet ancrage dans un espace culturel donnĂ©, et sur les pratiques de la philologie comme autant d’approches possibles de cet espace du sens.


 

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