A Paradigm Lost: The Linguistic Thought of Mikolaj Kruszewski (Studies in the History of the Language Sciences 72)

A Paradigm Lost: The Linguistic Thought of Mikolaj Kruszewski (Studies in the History of the Language Sciences 72)

By: Joanna Radwanska Williams (author)Hardback

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The general theory of language of Mikolaj Kruszweski (1851-1887) is, this book argues, a "lost paradigm" in the history of linguistics. The concept of 'paradigm' is understood in a broadly construed Kuhnian sense, and its applicability to linguistics as a science is examined. It is argued that Kruszewski's theory was a covert paradigm in that his major work, Ocerk nauki o jazyke ('An Outline of the Science of Language', 1883), had the potential to be seminal in the history of linguistics, i.e. to achieve the status of a 'classical text', or 'exemplar'. This potential was not realized because Kruszewski's influence was hindered by various historical factors, including his early death and the simultaneous consolidation of the Neogrammarian paradigm, with its emphasis on phonology and language change. The book examines the intellectual background of Kruszweski's thought, which was rooted, in part, in the tradition of British empiricism. It also discusses Kruszewski's relationship to his teacher Jean Baudouin de Courtenay (1845-1929), his attitude towards the Neogrammarian movement in linguistics, the ambivalent reception of his theory by his contemporaries, and the influence of his work on the linguistic theory of Roman Jakobson (1896-1982).


1. Preface; 2. I. Introductory Remarks on Linguistic Historiography; 3. 1.1 Kruszewski's place in the history of linguistics; 4. 1.2 The relationship between the past and the present in linguistic theory; 5. 1.3 Paradigms in the history of linguistics; 6. 1.4 Kruszewski's theory as a 'lost paradigm'; 7. 1.5 Establishing the historical context; 8. II. Historical Background for the Development of Kruszewski's Thought; 9. 2.1 Kruszewski's research goals; 10. 2.2 John Stuart Mill and the rise of the social sciences; 11. 2.3 The Neogrammarians, Baudouin de Courtenay, and the definition of linguistic science; 12. III. Kruszewski's Linguistic Writings Before Ocerk Nauki O Jazyke (1883); 13. 3.1 The beginning of Kruszewski's linguistic career; 14. 3.2 "Nabljudenija nad nekotorymi foneticeskimi javlenijami svjazannymi s akcentuaciej" (1879); 15. 3.3 "Lingvisticeskie zametki" (1880); 16. 3.4 Sound laws and sound alternations: K voprosu o gune (1881); 17. 3.5 "On 'Analogy' and 'Folk Etymology'" (1879); 18. IV. Kruszewski's Theory of Language in Ocerk Nauki O Jazyke; 19. 4.1 Definitions of linguistic science; 20. 4.2 The nature of linguistic units; 21. 4.3 The laws of association; 22. 4.4 The sound system of language; 23. 4.5 The morphological system of language; 24. 4.6 Kruszewski's conception of the linguistic system as a whole; 25. 4.7 Kruszewski's conception of language change; 26. V. Kruszewski and Baudouin de Courtenay; 27. 5.1 Baudouin's mentorship of Kruszewski; 28. 5.2 Baudouin's frustration with academic life; 29. 5.3 Kruszewski's illness; 30. 5.4 Baudouin's obituary of Kruszewski; 31. 5.5 Relevance of the 'Lautgesetz' controversy; 32. 5.6 The reception of Kruszewski's theory; 33. VI. Conclusion: Kruszewski's Place in the History of Linguistics; 34. 6.1 Influence of Kruszewski on Jakobson; 35. 6.2 Kruszewski and linguistic historiography in the second half of the 20th century; 36. 6.3 Kruszewski's place in the history of linguistics; 37. References; 38. Index of Names; 39. Index of Subjects and Terms

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9789027245595
  • Format: Hardback
  • Number Of Pages: 212
  • ID: 9789027245595
  • weight: 500
  • ISBN10: 9027245592

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