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  • Print publication year: 2019
  • Online publication date: November 2019

3 - Philosophy of Linguistics

from Section One - Language, Mind, Epistemology


Linguistics in 1945 was a modest discipline, with much to be modest about.1 Very few universities had linguistics departments; the profession was tiny. The history of American linguistics (on which this brief chapter concentrates, because it has been the main focus of philosophical interest) goes back barely a hundred years. Its foundational documents include the Handbook of American Indian Languages (Boas 1911), a posthumously reconstructed lecture course by Ferdinand de Saussure (1916), and Leonard Bloomfield’s general survey Language (1933).

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