LINGUIST List 8.1537

Mon Oct 27 1997

Sum: Immanent Approach, Distinctive Features

Editor for this issue: Anita Huang <>


  1. wzyem, Immanent Approach
  2. Clare Gallaway, Distinctive Features

Message 1: Immanent Approach

Date: Sun, 26 Oct 1997 10:54:38 +0800 (CST)
From: wzyem <>
Subject: Immanent Approach

I am wondering what linguists mean by the word "immanent" which is used to
describe linguistic approaches.
In their "Phonology and Phonetics," Roman Jakobson and Morris Halle call
theirs to phonology as an "inner approach," and classify Hjelmslev's
algebraic view as an outer approach. However, Hjelmslev seems to claim his
approach to language is an immanent one. The following are their words.

J&H: For the connection and delimination of phonology (especially
phonemics) and phonetics., the crucial question is the nature of the
relationship between phonological entities and sound.... This so-to-speak
inner, IMMANENT approach, which locates the distinctive features and their
bundles within the speech sounds, be it on their motor, acoustical or
auditory level, is the most appropriate premise for phonetic operation,
although it has been repeatedly contested by outer approaches which in
different ways divorce phonemes from concrete sounds...

Hjelmslev: The study of language, with its multifarious, essentially
transcendent aims, has many cultivators; The theory of language, with its
purely immanent aim, few. in this connection, the theory of language must
not be confused with the philosophy of language.
 Avoiding the hitherto dominant transcendent point of view and seeking
an immanent understanding of language as self-subsistent, specific
structure, and seeking a constant within language itself, not outside it,
linguistic theory begins by circumscribing the scope of its object...

Thank you.
Wang Zhenyu
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Message 2: Distinctive Features

Date: Mon, 27 Oct 1997 13:01:05 BST
From: Clare Gallaway <>
Subject: Distinctive Features

Clare Gallaway
University of Manchester

Earlier in the month I posted a request for references on the use of 
distinctive feature analysis to measure progress in children with 
phonological output problems. My colleagues pass on their thanks to 
all those who replied:

Dr. Stefan Frisch
Dr.Adele Miccio 
Prof Yishai Tobin

For the sake of brevity, I just list here all the references that 
were given. 

Costello, J. & Onstein, J.(1976) The modification of multiple 
articulation errors based on distinctive feature theory. JSpHDis, 41, 

Dinnsen, D.A., Chin, S.B., Elbert, M. and Powell, T.W. (1990) Some 
constraints on functionally disordered phonologies: phonetic 
inventories and phonotactics. JSpHRes, 33, 28-37.

Gierut, J.A. (1992) The conditions and course of clinically-induced 
phonological change. JSpHRes., 35, 1049-1063.

McReynolds, L.V. & Engmann, D. (1975) Distinctive feature analysis of 
misarticulations. (workbook) Baltimore, MD; University Park Press.

McReynolds, L.V. & Bennett, S. (1972) Distinctive feature 
generalization in articulation training. JSpHDis, 37, 462-470.

McReynolds, L.V.& Huston, K. (1981) A distinctive feature analysis 
of children's misarticulations. JSpHDis, 36, 155-166.

Tobin, Y. 1997. Phonology as Human Behaviour: Theoretical 
Implications and Clinical Applications. Duke University Press. 

Centre for Audiology, Education of the Deaf and Speech Pathology
School of Education
University of Manchester
Oxford Rd
Manchester M13 9PL

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