The birth of modern linguistics
Download
1 / 75

The Birth of Modern Linguistics - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


  • 611 Views
  • Updated On :

The Birth of Modern Linguistics. Ferdinand De Saussure Why Linguistics is a Science? Science and Ideology Basil Bernstein Noam Chomsky Structuralist Underpinnings Formalism and Functionalism. Ferdinand De Saussure. In Switzerland. . . . Philology vs. Linguistics

loader
I am the owner, or an agent authorized to act on behalf of the owner, of the copyrighted work described.
capcha
Download Presentation

PowerPoint Slideshow about 'The Birth of Modern Linguistics' - Renfred


An Image/Link below is provided (as is) to download presentation

Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author.While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server.


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - E N D - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Presentation Transcript
The birth of modern linguistics l.jpg
The Birth of Modern Linguistics

  • Ferdinand De Saussure

  • Why Linguistics is a Science?

  • Science and Ideology

  • Basil Bernstein

  • Noam Chomsky

  • Structuralist Underpinnings

  • Formalism and Functionalism


Ferdinand de saussure l.jpg
Ferdinand De Saussure

  • In Switzerland. . .

  • Philology vs. Linguistics

  • Diachronic vs. Synchronic

  • Descriptive vs. Prescriptive

  • Langue and Parole--

  • Semiotics

  • Objective, scientific approach

  • Thoroughly ‘modern’


You are watching a documentary imagine usual gorgeous footage of animals in their natural habitats l.jpg
You are watching a documentary. Imagine usual gorgeous footage of animals in their natural habitats.


Slide4 l.jpg
You are listening to the voiceover and suddenly realize some very troubling facts are being reported.


Dolphins do not execute their swimming strokes properly performance is in decline l.jpg
Dolphins do not execute their swimming strokes properly very troubling facts are being reported. (performance is in decline)


White crowned sparrows carelessly debase their calls l.jpg
White-crowned sparrows carelessly debase their calls. very troubling facts are being reported.








Those whales have low class whalish my mom won t let me play with you l.jpg
Those whales have low class whalish— whale to contain an “error”? my mom won’t let me play with you.


Basic instinct l.jpg
Basic Instinct whale to contain an “error”?

  • Animal behaviors are instinctual and stimulus bound

  • They can only communicate about food, territory, mating and danger

  • They cannot recombine components of their communication system to create novel utterances

  • Limited to the immediate mode


Too dumb to make a mistake l.jpg
Too Dumb to Make a Mistake whale to contain an “error”?

  • We don’t consider instinctual, stimulus dependent behavior to be subject to mistakes. . . We look for external variables to explain variation in performance—birds don’t have the cognitive capacity to deliberate about altering the melody of their songs and calls.


Epiphany l.jpg
Epiphany whale to contain an “error”?

You actually have to be very intelligent to make a grammar mistake.

You have to have the capacity to deliberate over your choice of form.


Philology vs linguistics l.jpg
Philology vs. Linguistics whale to contain an “error”?

  • Diachronic historical linguistics: how words and grammar changed across time

  • Classical variety, the standard or prestige dialect

  • The written variety of a language.


Diachronic vs synchronic l.jpg
Diachronic vs. Synchronic whale to contain an “error”?

  • Diachronic: language variation across time (ie., basically historical linguistics)

  • Synchronic: language variation contemporaneously– from place to place and person to person.


Descriptive vs prescriptive l.jpg
Descriptive vs. Prescriptive whale to contain an “error”?

  • Prescriptive: Identifies a subjective ideal and purports that all educated people will meet that ‘ideal’ (i.e., it tells you how you should talk, and ‘howdy’ is not on the approved vocabulary list!)

  • Descriptive: Describes the way a person or group of people actually do talk– describing naturally occurring phenomena is a primary task of scientific inquiry.


Syntagmatic and paradigmatic l.jpg
Syntagmatic and Paradigmatic whale to contain an “error”?

  • Syntagmatic (horizontal), different word classes and relations in a sentence.

  • Paradigmatic (vertical), same class of words, interchangeable in the same place in a sentence.


Langue and parole l.jpg
Langue and Parole whale to contain an “error”?

  • Langue, Saussure identified as the ideal of a language—all the German there is to know, for example, which does not exist in its entirety in any individual’s head.

  • Parole, he contrasted, is all the German in one individual’s head. (Even though he was writing in French)


Why is linguistics scientific l.jpg
Why is Linguistics Scientific? whale to contain an “error”?

  • In science, you describe the phenomena you observe and try to work out the system underlying the phenomena. Can you predict when the phenomena will occur?


Why is linguistics scientific23 l.jpg
Why is Linguistics Scientific? whale to contain an “error”?

  • Metalanguage

  • Standardized units of analysis

    3) Externally observable evidence as data

    4) Rigorous systematic methodology

    5) Identification of replicable patterns

    6) Both quantitative and qualitative research


Metalanguage l.jpg
Metalanguage whale to contain an “error”?

  • Vocabulary for talking about language (labels, categories)


Standardized units of analysis l.jpg
Standardized Units of Analysis whale to contain an “error”?

  • This includes standardized units of measure and description such as the IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet)


Externally observable evidence as data l.jpg
Externally Observable whale to contain an “error”? Evidence as Data

  • No mind reading

  • Phoneticians: tend to use recordings of speech,

  • Syntacticians: tend to rely more on native speaker intuitions about what ‘sounds’ well formed.

  • Sociolinguists: require naturally occurring, recorded data.


Rigorous systematic methodology l.jpg
Rigorous Systematic Methodology whale to contain an “error”?

  • In phonetics, you record and carefully transcribe the data. If you’re doing quantitative work you get statistically significant numbers of the phenomenon under scrutiny. . .


Identification of replicable patterns l.jpg
Identification of Replicable Patterns whale to contain an “error”?

  • What are the patterns and why do they occur? If you’ve identified a real pattern you can predict what will happen when certain variables are present.


Both quantitative and qualitative analysis l.jpg
Both Quantitative and whale to contain an “error”? Qualitative Analysis

  • Case studies: Particularity

    Goes into context and all the factors that

    come to bear

  • Quantitative Studies: Generalizeability


Formal vs functional l.jpg
Formal vs. Functional whale to contain an “error”?

  • Formal Linguistics (sometimes called Theoretical Linguistics) is focused on the technical aspects of language: phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics/pragmatics.

  • Functional Linguistics (also called Sociolinguistics) is focused on language in use—how people use language to create relationships and social realities.


Bernstein the pariah l.jpg
Bernstein the Pariah whale to contain an “error”?

  • Bernstein, who was guilty of sympathizing with the socialists during the wrong phase of U.S. history, got himself (and sociolinguistics) pretty much blacklisted for the next 30 years or so. His linguistics wasn’t ‘safe.’

    (He will remain faceless on this slide1) to remind you that he was blacklisted for so many years and 2) because I can’t find a photo of him. )


What is safe linguistics l.jpg
What is Safe Linguistics? whale to contain an “error”?

  • Like any academic discipline, as long as you stick to describing the laws of nature uninterfered with by human volition, you will generally be on the safe side. If you are just trying to describe the biological, cognitive device that produces language, that’s pretty “safe.”

  • (Although if you say “nuclear physics,” “stem cell research”, or “evolution” it’s hard to separate them from of all the ethical and philosophical baggage that attends them, isn’t it)


What is dangerous linguistics l.jpg
What is Dangerous Linguistics? whale to contain an “error”?

  • As soon as you start acknowledging and describing the ways human beings use language to create social realities, you are going to identify patterns where some humans use language in ways that benefit one group and harm another.


The monster of free willy l.jpg
The “Monster” of Free Willy whale to contain an “error”?


More of free willy l.jpg
More of Free Willy whale to contain an “error”? 


The monster of free will l.jpg
The Monster of Free Will whale to contain an “error”?

  • There are many forms for a single function

  • The reason for choosing a particular form is not merely aesthetic

  • The choice of form relates to the social goals of the speaker


How do i apologize to thee let me count the ways l.jpg
How do I apologize to thee? whale to contain an “error”? Let me count the ways. . .

  • I’m sorry

  • I apologize

  • Please forgive me, I am filled with remorse

  • Excuse me

  • Pardon me, I beg your pardon

  • I really regret that a mistake was made.

  • I suck.

  • You knew I was a jerk when you married me.


No mind reading but l.jpg
No Mind Reading But. . . whale to contain an “error”?

  • Although it is not possible (yet) to get inside somebody else’s head and find out what their true motives or goals are, it is possible to identify patterns between the use of certain forms and the social effects that follow.

    (This is just an appetizer for discourse analysis, which comes at the end of the course and is the meaning of life).


Patterns of verbal behavior l.jpg
Patterns of Verbal Behavior whale to contain an “error”?

  • When you start describing the social effects of language in use, you are getting into a sphere where accountability for one’s linguistic actions must also be acknowledged. You will inevitably ‘stumble upon’ sinister or otherwise non-benign patterns of language use that just happen to result in the social dominance of some people by others. National leaders tend to get their knickers in a knot over such observations and are fond of incarcerating scholars who sally into these shark-filled political waters. (E.g, Dr. Odisho)


Noam chomsky l.jpg
Noam Chomsky whale to contain an “error”?

  • Generative Syntax

  • Formal Linguistics

  • Safe Linguistics

  • Goal: Model of LAD

  • Competence vs. Performance

  • His problems with ape research (cf. Noam Chimpsky)


Cold war era linguistics l.jpg
Cold War Era Linguistics whale to contain an “error”?

  • Chomsky happened to be writing about syntax during the Cold War. His Aspects of Syntax came out in 1957.

    (Incidentally, he was about 21 when this landmark work was published)


How was chomsky s work different from bernstein s l.jpg
How was Chomsky’s work whale to contain an “error”? different from Bernstein’s?

  • Unlike Bernstein, who threatened the establishment by looking under social rocks he wasn’t supposed to, Chomsky’s work was able to blossom because his focus was on the formal, technicalaspects of language, not the functional, social uses of language (so social criticism was not the inevitable upshot of his work as it would be with Bernstein and other sociolinguists.)


Competence vs performance l.jpg
Competence vs. Performance whale to contain an “error”?

Competenceis what you know; it’s the ideal

language that’s in your head. What’s in the

black box? Chomsky is interested in

competence. He wants to know how the brain

produces language.


Competence vs performance44 l.jpg
Competence vs. Performance whale to contain an “error”?

Performanceis what actually comes out of

your mouth (or in some cases your pen),

which sometimes is messed up. You

get tongue tied or accidentally say

something other than what you know is well

formed language—if given a chance to

rephrase, you fix it immediately, because

your competence always exceeds your

performance.


Language in use l.jpg
Language in Use whale to contain an “error”?

Performance also covers the social functions

you perform with your language. Besides the

exchange of information, you build all kinds of

relationships and create larger social realities

with your language. This is what Sociolinguists

are concerned with. Chomsky doesn’t care

about language in use because it doesn’t

contribute to his quest to understand how the

brain produces language.


Lad the little black box l.jpg
LAD: The Little Black Box whale to contain an “error”?

  • The LAD is the Language Acquisition Device Chomsky believes is the key to human language production—it is essentially the black box of the human mind.

  • The goal of Chomskyan linguistics is to discover and describe the systematic organization of the LAD and its product (grammatical relations in language).


Chomsky and the planet of the apes l.jpg
Chomsky and whale to contain an “error”? the Planet of the Apes

  • Chomsky believes that language is unique to humans.

  • Those who want to prove an evolutionary link between apes and humans are invested in finding similarities between ape communication and human language.

  • Chomsky dismisses this work because he believes the LAD is completely unique to humans.


Universal grammar ug l.jpg
Universal Grammar: UG whale to contain an “error”?

  • The UG is the universal grammar that Chomsky and other structuralists (and pretty much all linguists now, including moi) that all human languages share a common core of grammatical options.

  • Ideologically, the UG eradicates the possibility of one language or its users being inferior or primative by comparison to other languages and peoples (not using ‘races’ here on purpose. . . ) since they all share, in the Chomskyan theory, the same black box. (This is good )


Metaphors for ug l.jpg
Metaphors for UG whale to contain an “error”?

  • (Think of a Universal Grammar of car design, house building, painting a portrait—only a handful of options at each stage of decision making (standard or automatic, cloth or leather, etc.)


What s the point l.jpg
What’s the Point? whale to contain an “error”?

  • The scientific point of tracking down all the languages in the world and writing up a descriptive grammar of them is partly to prove that there are these universals that are basically a finite set of options used creatively to generate an infinitenumber of words, sentences, and languages. It is also, of course, to get a full description of what the UG contains.


More on the point of the search for the ug l.jpg
More on the Point of whale to contain an “error”? the Search for the UG

  • Prove that there is a UG (which supports the theory that all humans are born with the LAD)

  • Describe what’s in the UG (partly to get at what it is that being human endows us with linguistically)


Social point l.jpg
Social Point whale to contain an “error”?

  • There’s also an underlying social agenda or worldview driving this scientific quest, and that is to prove the equality of all races. If you can prove that humans all come with the same equipment, then you’re going to have very strong evidence refuting the idea that some races are more “evolved” than others.


What s in the black box l.jpg
What’s in the Black Box? whale to contain an “error”?

  • Switches. (Not the kind your mom made you go out and pick before she whipped you with it).

  • These switches are a limited number of choices about each feature of language.

  • The LAD allows you to learn any language as a baby; you don’t get a language as a genetic inheritance encoded in your genes.

  • You are born with all the switches everyone else is born with (think of dials or control panels), and your mind sets them to match the language being spoken around you.

  • A finite number of switch/dial settings can produce an infinite number of language possibilities.


Adjectival possibilities l.jpg
Adjectival Possibilities whale to contain an “error”?

  • For example, there are only so many things you can do with an adjective:

  • You can put it before the nounblue eyes

  • or after the nounojos azules

  • You may be able to add a suffix or prefix to the noun that serves as the adjective.

  • You could even make what English does with adjectives into a verb— the eyes blue, the coat reds,’ ‘that really blues me out man,’ etc.


A now a word from our sponsor l.jpg
A now a word from our sponsor: whale to contain an “error”?

  • Don’t forget that you have a very nice glossary in the back of your text book.

    USE IT!


Some distinctive features of human language l.jpg
Some Distinctive Features of Human Language whale to contain an “error”?

  • Innate

  • Culturally transmitted (not genetically)

  • Arbitrary

  • Discrete

  • Generative, Creative, Productive

  • Displacement friendly

  • Dynamic


Innate l.jpg
Innate whale to contain an “error”?

  • All human beings are born with an LAD

  • People with very low IQ’s can still acquire language with a predictable, rule governed grammar


Culturally transmitted l.jpg
Culturally Transmitted whale to contain an “error”?

  • Although it’s innate, humans have to learn their language (even though it can’t be taught).

  • Some animals are born with instinctive songs and calls

  • Humans are born with an LAD, but it has to be activated by exposure to human language within the early years of life (a critical window) to actually acquire language.


Arbitrary l.jpg
Arbitrary whale to contain an “error”?

  • For evidence of this you need only survey the variety of ways languages around the world refer to the same entity/item. You can even look at onomatopoeia in how different languages represent the sounds that animals make (as when talking to their two year old children. )


Discrete l.jpg
Discrete whale to contain an “error”?

  • This means that smaller parts are combined in different ways to make larger units


Generative productive creative l.jpg
Generative, Productive, Creative whale to contain an “error”?

  • Even a small child can take words s/he has heard and create sentences she has never heard before. She can generate new thoughts with the same blocks.


Slide62 l.jpg


Displacement friendly l.jpg
Displacement friendly the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • While a bee can give you an elaborate performance as to the location of a certain desirable food source, it cannot remark on what it had for dinner the night before, or speculate on what it might like for breakfast tomorrow. The bee, like other animals, is limited to the HERE and NOW.


Displaced vs immediate modes l.jpg
Displaced vs. Immediate Modes the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • Animals are limited to the “immediate mode.” This time and this place. Bees and dolphins don’t tell stories (as far as researchers have been able to divine).

  • Humans are capable of using language to refer to other places and times, including those that are imaginary. Chimps and ants also do not tell jokes. The ‘displaced mode’ is one that allows you to talk about past and future and hypothetical or fantasy worlds (which is, of course, what jokes are).


Dynamic l.jpg
Dynamic the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • Language is fluid—it is in a constant state of flux, changing in some ways predictably and in other ways almost whimsically as it is used

  • This is why the dictionary is always already out of date by the time it is printed

  • People like Ed Newman who think English is going to hell in a hand basket don’t understand this fundamental characteristic of language. We don’t, thank God, still talk like Beowulf or King James. Are we in hell?


Thought to ponder l.jpg
Thought to Ponder the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • So I guess I’ll just leave you with that inspiring thought today,

    Are we in hell?


Intercalary caveat l.jpg
Intercalary Caveat: the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • Remember that being a descriptivist doesn’t mean that EVERYTHING that comes out of your mouth is grammatical. In terms of theory, it means that you have a perfectly well formed grammar in your head (ie. Competence). What comes out of your mouth may be another matter!


You can be wrong l.jpg
You CAN be wrong! the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • If other native speakers of your speech variety judge a sentence to be ill formed, then you uttered something ungrammatical.


Seeing stars in linguistics l.jpg
Seeing Stars in Linguistics the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • Asterisks are used in linguistics to mark a word or sentence that is unsayable or unsaid by native speakers of the language variety in focus.

  • John drives me up the wall.

  • *John drives up the wall me.


Starred sentence example l.jpg
Starred Sentence Example: the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • In American English:

    • Have you ever had sushi?

    • I might have, but I was too young to remember.

    • *I might have done, but I was too young to remember.


Scottish english l.jpg
Scottish English the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • In Scottish English:

    • Have you ever had sushi?

    • I might have done, but I was too young to remember.


Another starred sentence l.jpg
Another Starred Sentence the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • Elisa: I’m moving to Texas.

  • Cecilia: * Oh? We’re, too.

  • Cecilia : Oh? We are, too.


In sae standard american english l.jpg
In SAE the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas. (“Standard” American English)

* 1. You might could open an account there.

2. You might be able to open an account there.

In many southern dialects both 1 and 2 are perfectly acceptable in everyday conversation.


Relative stardom l.jpg
Relative Stardom the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • Thus a sentence might be starred in one language variety, but might be judged as well-formed in another.

  • However, there is still a galaxy full of starred utterances that would never be judged well formed in any variety of the language.


Some unredeemable stars l.jpg
Some Unredeemable Stars: the fact that a finite number of elements can be used to produce an infinite number of utterances and ideas.

  • *Who is firefly or eat out?

  • *Dog car on over running bark.

  • *Reds the coat.

  • *Louise over hill the ate.


ad