Blog Archives

Saussure’s sound symbolism

John Joseph University of Edinburgh “The most celebrated opponent of the sound symbolic hypothesis,” writes Magnus (2013: 201), “was, of course, Ferdinand de Saussure”. Of course. One of Saussure’s key contributions to modern linguistics is the principle of the arbitrariness

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Posted in 19th century, 20th century, Article, Europe, History, Linguistics, Structuralism

Hendrik Pos and the epistemological foundations of structuralism

Patrick Flack Charles University, Prague The name of Dutch linguist and philosopher Hendrik Josephus Pos (1898-1955) is not one that rings many bells today, except perhaps in the Netherlands and the (growing) circles of Merleau-Ponty specialists. But to the keen

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Posted in 20th century, Article, Europe, History, Linguistics, Phenomenology, Philosophy, Structuralism

From Inductivism to Structuralism: the ‘method of residues’ goes to the field

Michael Silverstein University of Chicago It should be clear to anyone who surveys the historical record that the “discovery” of the phoneme – that is, the codification of phonological theory and method – was key in linguists’ consciousness of a

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Posted in 19th century, 20th century, America, Article, Europe, History, Linguistics, Structuralism