LINGUIST List 2.873

Wed 18 Dec 1991

FYI: History of Linguistics, Scandinavian Proceedings

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  1. (horsteinn G. Indridason, posting for LINGUIST: Scholarly meetings of linguists
  2. Thorsteinn G. Indridason, Scandinavian Proceedings

Message 1: posting for LINGUIST: Scholarly meetings of linguists

Date: Tue, 17 Dec 91 15:26:12 CST
From: (horsteinn G. Indridason <>
Subject: posting for LINGUIST: Scholarly meetings of linguists
As MLA and LSA approach, I thought the readers of LINGUIST might
enjoy this description of a scholarly meeting in the 7th c.:
"Virgil [the Asiatic] tells us that in his youth he was present at
a gathering of thirty grammarians who had met to discuss their art.
It was there decided that the most sublime object to which scholarly
meditation could aspire was the conjugation of verbs. In these councils
of grammarians two parties were constantly in evidence, endlessly
engaged in dispute, and here are some of the subjects of their arguments.
The two party leaders debated for fourteen days and fourteen nights the
question of whether the pronoun "ego" has a vocative. Fifteen days and
fifteen nights were necessary to decide whether all Latin verbs have a
frequentive [...]; a meeting of grammarians was rather like a secret
society which devoted itself in the shadows to the celebration of
mystical rites. They were not content with co-ordinating the rules and
teaching them as lucidly as possible; they subjected the language to
a frenzied elaboration, torturing the meaning of words, the syntax and
the spelling, in order to produce a system of symbols which would be
inaccessible to the common people [...] Entire treatises were written
in this mystical gobbledygook, and we find passages from these treatises
cited by people of no mean intelligence. This proves the authority
which the school enjoyed. The very mystery with which it surrounded
itself attracted the attention of the barbarians, for whom the scholar
became once again a sort of magician and initiate."
If this kind of look at the history of our discipline interests you, I hope
you will stop by the meetings of the North American Association for
the History of the Language Sciences, to be held in conjunction with
LSA on Saturday, January 11 in Salon 10 of the Franklin Plaza Hotel.
The program:
9:00 Dominique Linchet (UNC): "Des marches, iles et terre ferme... A study
of the language and impact of the New World in France"
9:30: Dianne Brain (UNC): "The English Perceptions of the New World: Linguistic
Borrowing in 16th- and 17th-Century England"
10:00: Joseph Subbiondo (U. of the Pacific): "The Influence of Comenius
on 17th-Century English Philosophical Language"
10:45: Geoffrey Nunberg (Xerox-PARC): "Campbell and Hume on General Use:
Language and the Politics of Taste"
11:15: Stephen Guice (Memphis ST. U.): "Evaluating Pre-Institutional
11:45: Konrad Koerner (Ottawa): "On the Significance of Dates in
Linguistic Historiography"
2:00: Michael Mackert (Delaware/ AZ. St. U.): "Form and Material in Heymann
Steinthal's Semiotics of Language and Art"
2:30: Kurt Jankowsky (Georgetown): "Hermann Paul's Individuals-psychologie vs.
Wilhelm Wundt's Volkerspsychologie"
3:00: Douglas Kibbee (Illinois): "Durkheim on Language"
3:45: Maria Tsiapera (UNC): "Saussure's Role in Late 19th and Early 20th-
Century thought"
4:15: Jan-Eric Widell (Uppsala): "The Social Aspect of Language Interpreted
in a Saussurean Textus-Receptus Tradition"
4:45: William McMahon (Akron): "Epistemology and Some Recent Theories of
5:15: John E. Joseph (Maryland): "`Core' and `Periphery' in the History
of Linguistics"
Doug Kibbee
French Department
2090 Foreign Languages Building or 333-2021
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Message 2: Scandinavian Proceedings

Date: Mon, 16 Dec 91 17:18:23 GMT
From: Thorsteinn G. Indridason <>
Subject: Scandinavian Proceedings
Papers from The Twelfth Scandinavian Conference of Linguistics
The volume (470 pages) contains the proceedings of the Twelfth
Scandinavian Conference of Linguistics, Reykjavik, June 14-16, 1990.
Those who are interested can order a copy through e-mail:
surface mail: Institute of Linguistics
 University of Iceland
 101 Reykjavik
The price is 35 USD.
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