Humboldt, Worldview and Language

Humboldt, Worldview and Language

By: Dr James W. Underhill (author)Hardback

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With the loss of many of the world's languages, it is important to question what will be lost to humanity with their demise. It is frequently argued that a language engenders a 'worldview', but what do we mean by this term? Attributed to German politician and philologist Wilhelm von Humboldt (1767-1835), the term has since been adopted by numerous linguists. Within specialist circles it has become associated with what is known as the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis which suggests that the nature of a language influences the thought of its speakers and that different language patterns yield different patterns of thought. Underhill's concise and rigorously researched book clarifies the main ideas and proposals of Humboldt's linguistic philosophy and demonstrates the way his ideas can be adopted and adapted by thinkers and linguists today. A detailed glossary of terms is provided in order to clarify key concepts and to translate the German terms used by Humboldt.

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About Author

James W. Underhill lectures on Translation Studies at Stendhal University, Grenoble, France. He has worked as a professional translator of both French and Czech and has published articles on poetics, metaphor and translation.


Part I: Language and World; 1, The Word is a World (La parole est un monde); 2, What do we have in mind when we talk about language?; 3, What do we see in the term Worldview?; 4, Boas; 5, Sapir; 6, Whorf; Part II: Humboldt, Man and Language; 7, Worldview (Weltanschauung or Weltansicht); 8, Sprache; 9, The Work of the Mind; 10, Form; 11, Creativity, Culture and Character; 12, Catching the Character; 13, A Seeing and Feeling Worldview; 14, Four Dangers in the Comparative Approach; 15, Reformulating the Worldview Hypothesis; 16, A Final Word

Product Details

  • publication date: 23/05/2009
  • ISBN13: 9780748638420
  • Format: Hardback
  • Number Of Pages: 176
  • ID: 9780748638420
  • weight: 348
  • ISBN10: 0748638423

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