LINGUIST List 14.180

Sun Jan 19 2003

Books: History of Linguistics: Joseph

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  1. paul, From Whitney to Chomsky: John E. Joseph

Message 1: From Whitney to Chomsky: John E. Joseph

Date: Fri, 17 Jan 2003 13:14:08 +0000
From: paul <>
Subject: From Whitney to Chomsky: John E. Joseph

Title: From Whitney to Chomsky
Subtitle: Essays in the history of American linguistics
Series Title: Studies in the History of the Language Sciences 103
Publication Year: 2002
Publisher: John Benjamins,		 
Book URL:
Author: John E. Joseph, University of Edinburgh 

Hardback: ISBN: 1588113493, Pages: viii, 240 pp., Price: USD 85.00
Hardback: ISBN: 9027245924, Pages: viii, 240 pp., Price: EUR 85.00
Paperback: ISBN: 1588113507, Pages: viii, 240 pp., Price: USD 39.95
Paperback: ISBN: 9027245932, Pages: viii, 240 pp., Price: EUR 40.00


What is 'American' about American linguistics? Is Jakobson, who spent
half his life in America, part of it? What became of Whitney's
genuinely American conception of language as a democracy? And how did
developments in 20th-century American linguistics relate to broader
cultural trends?

This book brings together 15 years of research by John E. Joseph,
including his discovery of the meeting between Whitney and Saussure,
his ground-breaking work on the origins of the 'Sapir-Whorf
Hypothesis' and of American sociolinguistics, and his seminal
examination of Bloomfield and Chomsky as readers of Saussure.

Among the original findings and arguments contained herein:
- why 'American structuralism' does not end with Chomsky, but begins
with him;
- how Bloomfield managed to read Saussure as a behaviourist avant la
- why in the long run Skinner has emerged victorious over Chomsky;
- how Whorf was directly influenced by the mystical writings of
Madame Blavatsky;
- how the Whitney-Max M´┐Żller debates in the 19th century connect
to the intellectual disparity between Chomsky's linguistic and
political writings.

Lingfield(s): History of Linguistics
Written In: English (Language Code: ENG)
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