LINGUIST List 4.771

Tue 28 Sep 1993

Disc: Linguistic Pedagogy, "Haj" Ross

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Directory

  1. Swann Philip, 4.729 Linguistic Pedagogy
  2. Henry Kucera, Re: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars
  3. Peter H. Salus, Re: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars
  4. Bruce Fraser, Re: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars

Message 1: 4.729 Linguistic Pedagogy

Date: Fri, 24 Sep 1993 10:01:56 4.729 Linguistic Pedagogy
From: Swann Philip <swanndivsun.unige.ch>
Subject: 4.729 Linguistic Pedagogy

In reply to Steven Schaufele's claim that linguistics is the
scientific study of language, some brief remarks on what is
a vast topic:

1. Similar claims have been made about the whole range of
 social "sciences", but they have generally been rejected
 by philosophers and historians of science.

2. A rational, methodical and data-driven investigative style
 is not enough to define an activity as "scientific". Otherwise,
 as Schaufele suggests, practically everything we do becomes
 science: Why not cooking or gardening?

3. Consider the stock exchange, a semiotic system at a level of
 complexity similar to that of language. An enormous amount of
 effort has gone into trying to build scientific theories of
 price movements in the market. These efforts have failed, so
 it seems, because the market performs a random walk driven
 by greed and fear in a space that is detached from underlying
 economic reality. All the retrospective studies confirm that
 there is no way to predict the stock market. In other words,
 it has been demonstrated scientifically that the market is
 not open to scientific description. [I'm probably over-stating
 this a bit, but I hope the point is clear] I don't see any
 reason to doubt that other semiotic systems (language, music,
 art etc.) share this property.


Philip Swann
University of Geneva
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Message 2: Re: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars

Date: Thu, 23 Sep 93 21:53:20 EDRe: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars
From: Henry Kucera <HENRYBROWNVM.bitnet>
Subject: Re: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars

Ross (who apparently does not read this list) got the Haj nickname from his
father when Haj was a little boy. There is apparently a longer story about
this which I have forgotten. (At my age, I am entitled to forget).

Henry Kucera
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Message 3: Re: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars

Date: Fri, 24 Sep 93 05:03:36 PDRe: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars
From: Peter H. Salus <peterusenix.org>
Subject: Re: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars

Re: John Robert Ross

Well, folks. Using an old and discredited approach of Dave
Stampe's (= Natural Phonology), those of us who know Haj,
know that it was his infant name, and that it is
easily derivable from John.

 ______________________________________________

Peter H. Salus #3303 4 Longfellow Place Boston, MA 02114
 +1 617 723-3092
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Message 4: Re: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars

Date: Fri, 24 Sep 93 11:13:05 -0Re: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars
From: Bruce Fraser <bfraseracs.bu.edu>
Subject: Re: 4.746 The Linguistic Wars

To contact Haj, you need only e-mail him at Rossunbc.edu where he
is now teaching, and if this gets bounced back because the account
is not yet operative, try Margaret Anderson at Andersonunbc.edu.

Contrary to the way in which he has been talked about in recent
postings, he is very much alive, working in Canda at UNBC, and
working on some very interesting things involving space and paths.
Has anyone thought to ask him about the LInguistic Wars?

Bruce Fraser
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