Studies in East European Thought

, Volume 60, Issue 4, pp 279–283 | Cite as

Language and its social functions in early soviet thought

  • Craig BrandistEmail author

The materials presented in the current issue originated as papers presented at the conference Sociological Theories of Language in the USSR, 1917–1938 held at the Bakhtin Centre and Department of Russian and Slavonic Studies at the University of Sheffield, UK, in September 2006.1The selected papers highlight various aspects of the shift towards what might be described as a functional approach to language studies during the first two decades after the October Revolution. Each in their own way shows how empirical data accumulated during the previous era of unchallenged descriptive methodology was reworked according to a new agenda, as massive practical projects drove funding decisions and research agendas more generally. New projects to catalogue and categorise linguistic phenomena were launched with the explicit purpose of spreading literacy and facilitating the development of hitherto marginalised social groups. Of course, the shift towards a linguistic science driven by social and...


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Russian and Slavonic StudiesUniversity of SheffieldSheffieldUK

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