The Practice of Language

  • Martin Gustafsson
  • Lars Hertzberg

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-1
  2. Introduction

    1. Martin Gustafsson, Lars Hertzberg
      Pages 3-8
  3. Historical Perspectives

  4. Preconceptions: Notions of Language Within Linguistics and Feminist Epistemology

  5. The Practice of Meaning and Truth

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 145-145
    2. Frederick Stoutland
      Pages 147-176
    3. Martin Gustafsson
      Pages 177-197
  6. Themes from Wittgenstein

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 199-199
    2. Thorsten Johansson
      Pages 213-224
    3. Juan Wilhelmi
      Pages 225-236
    4. Gudmundur Steingrimsson
      Pages 237-245
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 261-273

About this book


How is linguistic theory related to linguistic practice? What do theoretical notions and models tell us about real-life language use? Are there any limits to what such notions and models can reasonably be taken to accomplish? These questions are fundamental to any serious investigation into the phenomena of human communication. The essays in this book show that philosophers and linguists of quite different brands have tended to give undue priority to their own favourite theoretical framework, and have presupposed that the descriptive scheme invoked by that framework constitutes a pattern to which any linguistic practice somehow has to conform. What unites the contributors to this volume is a critical attitude towards such essentialist aspirations. By investigating several concrete examples of this tendency - examples collected from such seemingly disparate areas as structuralism, contemporary analytic philosophy and feminist epistemology - the authors collectively manage to cast doubt on the very attempt to fit the whole of linguistic practice into a general theoretical mould.


Ferdinand de Saussure Hilary Putnam Linguistic Turn Ludwig Wittgenstein language linguistics

Editors and affiliations

  • Martin Gustafsson
    • 1
  • Lars Hertzberg
    • 2
  1. 1.Uppsala UniversitySweden
  2. 2.Åbo AcademyFinland

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2002
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-90-481-6053-2
  • Online ISBN 978-94-017-3439-4
  • Buy this book on publisher's site