This book "supplies a vocabulary of English words and idiomatic phrases 'arranged … according to the ideas which they express'. The thesaurus, continually expanded and updated, has always remained in print, but this reissued first edition shows the impressive breadth of Roget's own knowledge and interests."
This volume contains functional approaches to the description of language and culture, and language and cultural change. The approaches taken by the authors range from cognitive approaches including Stratificational grammar to more socially oriented ones including Systemic Functional linguistics. The volume is organized into two sections.
The first section 'Functional Approaches to the Structure of Language: Theory and Practice' starts with contributions developing a Stratificational model; these are followed by contributions focusing on some related functional model of language; and by articles describing some particular set of language phenomena.
In the second section 'Functional Approaches to the History of Language and Linguistics' general studies of language change are addressed first; a second group of contributions examines language change, lexicon and culture; and the last cluster of contributions treats the history of linguistics and culture.