Read e-book online A Marxist Philosophy of Language PDF

By Jean-Jacques Lecercle

ISBN-10: 9004147519

ISBN-13: 9789004147515

The aim of this ebook is to offer an actual aspiring to the formulation. English is the language of imperialism. knowing that assertion consists of a critique of the dominant perspectives of language, either within the box of linguistics (the booklet has a bankruptcy criticising Chomsky's learn programme) and of the philosophy of language (the publication has a bankruptcy assessing Habermas's philosophy of communicative action). The ebook goals at developing a Marxist philosophy of language, embodying a view of language as a social, ancient, fabric and political phenomenon. when you consider that there hasn't ever been a powerful culture of considering language in Marxism, the booklet offers an outline of the query of Marxism in language (from Stalin's pamphlet to Volosinov booklet, taking in an essay through Pasolini), and it seeks to build a couple of techniques for a Marxist philosophy of language. The e-book belongs to the culture of Marxist critique of dominant ideologies. it's going to be really invaluable to those that, within the fields of language learn, literature and conversation reviews, have made up our minds that language isn't simply an software of conversation.

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But sympathising with the empiricist position is not enough. The presuppositions involved in the innate/acquired opposition must also be criticised. It will be noted that both empiricists and rationalists adopt the standpoint of the individual, the individual speaker: whether the child is a 24 • Chapter Two tabula rasa or bearer of a programme that merely needs to be unfolded, social interaction plays only a secondary role (certainly more important in the case of empiricism: even Frankenstein’s monster needs a family environment in order to learn to speak).

7) The candidates believed each other to be dishonest. (8) *The candidates believed each other were dishonest. (9) *The candidates wanted me to vote for each other. ) In (8) ‘each other’ is the subject of the substantival clause ‘(that) X were dishonest’; and its antecedent is therefore not situated in the same clause, but in the main clause. In (9) the antecedent of ‘each other’ is the subject of the main clause. However, the explanation that I have just implicitly given (the relationship of antecedent does not hold across the clause boundary) is insufficient, for it should lead me to conclude that sentences (6) and (7) are equally ungrammatical, since in both cases the reciprocal pronoun is in the infinitive subordinate clause and the antecedent in the main clause.

The object of linguistic science is obviously (and this is not a criticism) not language such as we use it, but an abstract construct, which Chomsky calls I-language. e. language as we use it – is consigned to ‘common sense’, as the object of what Chomsky calls ‘folk-linguistics’ in all the senses of the term. There is nothing objectionable about the idea that a science does not find its object ready-made in the world, but constructs it, by abstraction, against common-sense conceptions: the sun does not revolve around the earth and popular etymology is a symptom, not an explanation, of the origin of words.

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A Marxist Philosophy of Language by Jean-Jacques Lecercle


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