Hansjakob Seiler

Language Universals Research

A Synthesis
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This book presents both an account and a synthesis of relevant work conducted by the UNITYP research group during the decades of its existence and by the author in the years afterward.
As we see it, the fundamental task of language universals research constits in uncovering the ways in which cognitive-conceptual content of universal status is construed and in demonstrating the ways in which such construal is represented in individual languages. Specifically, the universalist must demonstrate that the same principles and the same mechanisms coupled with the same functions obtain: (a) across major funcional domains termed Dimensions; (b) in the course of cross-linguistic comparison; (c) across different levels of abstraction; (d) across different grammatical domains in one and the same language; and (e) in synchrony as well as diachrony.
Our results, our ways of thinking, and, in particular, our terminology differ substantially from what is common currency within the parameters of much of language universal research, especially research on so-called "universal grammar". In presenting a synthesis of our findings we take these differences into account, and our presentation is thus one of gradual familiarization.
From its beginning, the project has been open to vistas beyond the limits of language proper. The project´s association with, for example, the Piaget research group on psycholinguistics in Geneva has shown the importance of the principle of reversible operations, as well as the nature of constructivism in language and in other mental activities. Then, too, afffiliation with the French mathematician and philosopher, René Thom, has resulted in an exchange of views on the nature of the continuum.
In the final analysis, our approach to the problem of universalitiy in language leads to the insight that we cannot confine ourselves to the limits of language per se, but will have to place language within the context of other semiotic systems and, in the end, of the phenomena of nature and the world around us. This volume adresses a varied readership composed of professional linguists and semioticans and those in allied fields such as logic, philosophy, developmental psychology, computer science, and neurolinguistics.
This book presents both an account and a synthesis of relevant work conducted by the UNITYP research group during the decades of its existence and by the author in the years afterward.
As we see it, the fundamental task of language universals research constits in uncovering the ways in which cognitive-conceptual content of universal status is construed and in demonstrating the ways in which such construal is represented in individual languages. Specifically, the universalist must demonstrate that the same principles and the same mechanisms coupled with the same functions obtain: (a) across major funcional domains termed Dimensions; (b) in the course of cross-linguistic comparison; (c) across different levels of abstraction; (d) across different grammatical domains in one and the same language; and (e) in synchrony as well as diachrony.
Our results, our ways of thinking, and, in particular, our terminology differ substantially from what is common currency within the parameters of much of language universal research, especially research on so-called "universal grammar". In presenting a synthesis of our findings we take these differences into account, and our presentation is thus one of gradual familiarization.
From its beginning, the project has been open to vistas beyond the limits of language proper. The project´s association with, for example, the Piaget research group on psycholinguistics in Geneva has shown the importance of the principle of reversible operations, as well as the nature of constructivism in language and in other mental activities. Then, too, afffiliation with the French mathematician and philosopher, René Thom, has resulted in an exchange of views on the nature of the continuum.
In the final analysis, our approach to the problem of universalitiy in language leads to the insight that we cannot confine ourselves to the limits of language per se, but will have to place language within the context of other semiotic systems and, in the end, of the phenomena of nature and the world around us. This volume adresses a varied readership composed of professional linguists and semioticans and those in allied fields such as logic, philosophy, developmental psychology, computer science, and neurolinguistics.
Mehr Informationen
ISBN 978-3-8233-4780-4
EAN 9783823347804
Bibliographie 1. Auflage
Seiten 216
Format kartoniert
Ausgabename 14780
Auflagenname -11
Verlag Gunter Narr Verlag
Autor Hansjakob Seiler
Erscheinungsdatum 04.12.2000
Lieferzeit 2-4 Tage