This volume contains 37 papers selected from the proceedings of the XXXIst Annual Meeting of the Societas Linguistica Europaea held at the University of St Andrews, Scotland in 1998. The general theme of the conference was 'langue and parole in synchronic and diachronic perspective', a theme chosen for its enduring importance and one which allowed speakers to reflect on the theoretical notions of langue and parole, to use them in an actual analysis or to present material beyond these core ideas. The breadth of papers published here and the eminence of many of the contributors reflects the fruitfulness of this approach.
William Diver of Columbia University (1921-1995) critiqued the very roots of traditional and contemporary linguistics and founded a school of thought that aims for radical aposteriorism in accounting for the distribution of linguistic forms in authentic text. Grammatical and phonological analyses of Homeric Greek, Classical Latin, and Modern English reveal language to be an instrument whose structure is shaped by its communicative function and by the peculiarly human characteristics of its users. Diver's foundational works, many never before published, appear here newly edited and annotated, with introductions by the editors. The volume presents for the first time to a wide audience the depth and originality of Diver's iconoclastic thought.
Thunder: Perfect Mind (NHC VI,2) and the
Trimorphic Protennoia (NHC XIII,1) present their readers with goddesses who descend in such auditive terms as sound, voice, and word. In
Linguistic Manifestations in the Trimorphic Protennoia
and the Thunder: Perfect Mind, Tilde Bak Halvgaard argues that these presentations reflect a philosophical discussion about the nature of words and names, utterances and language, as well as the relationship between language and reality, inspired especially by Platonic and Stoic dialectics.
Her analysis of these linguistic manifestations against the background of ancient philosophy of language offers many new insights into the structure of the two texts and the paradoxical sayings of the
Thunder: Perfect Mind.
Drawing on usage-based theory, neurocognition, and complex systems,
Languaging Beyond Languages elaborates an elegant model accommodating accumulated insights into human language even as it frees linguistics from its two-thousand-year-old, ideological attachment to reified grammatical systems. Idiolects are redefined as continually emergent collections of context specific, probabilistic memories entrenched as a result of domain-general cognitive processes that create and consolidate linguistic experience. Also continually emergent, conventionalization and vernacularization operate across individuals producing the illusion of shared grammatical systems. Conventionalization results from the emergence of parallel expectations for the use of linguistic elements organized into syntagmatic and paradigmatic relationships. In parallel, vernacularization indexes linguistic forms to sociocultural identities and stances. Evidence implying entrenchment and conventionalization is provided in asymmetrical frequency distributions.