A Marxist Philosophy of Language (Historical Materialism by Jean-Jacques Lecercle

By Jean-Jacques Lecercle

The aim of this publication is to provide an exact desiring to the formulation: English is the language of imperialism. knowing that assertion includes a critique of the dominant perspectives of language, either within the box of linguistics (the e-book has a bankruptcy criticising Chomsky’s learn programme) and of the philosophy of language (the e-book has a bankruptcy assessing Habermas’s philosophy of communicative action).

The booklet goals at developing a Marxist philosophy of language, embodying a view of language as a social, old, fabric and political phenomenon. due to the fact that there hasn't ever been a robust culture of brooding about language in Marxism, the e-book presents an summary of the query of Marxism in language (from Stalin’s pamphlet to Voloshinov's publication, taking in an essay by way of Pasolini), and it seeks to build a couple of recommendations for a Marxist philosophy of language.
The ebook belongs to the culture of Marxist critique of dominant ideologies. it's going to be really worthy to those that, within the fields of language learn, literature and communique experiences, have determined that language isn't really in simple terms an tool of communique.

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Additional info for A Marxist Philosophy of Language (Historical Materialism Book Series, Volume 12)

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Lakoff and Johnson’s theory 10 11 Chomsky 2000, p. 35. Chomsky 2000, p. 120. 12 Thus, the ball is ‘behind’ the rock (which, unlike a car, obviously has no front or back) because the rock is between my body and the ball. It is the outside of the house that is painted brown because I perceive the house from the outside, as a unified object, before entering it. The only universal feature we are dealing with here is the experience of bodily orientation. We can take our critique further. For Chomsky’s thesis is not even adapted to the detail of linguistic phenomena.

16 The following passage, taken from an interview with David Barsamian, his privileged interlocutor, is typical (the passage in italics is Barsamian’s contribution to the discussion): Talk about the power of language to shape and control political discussion. For example, the IMF’s much criticized ‘structural adjustment program’ has now been renamed ‘poverty reduction and growth facility’. The School of Americas, the notorious training facility for the Latin American military at Fort Benning, Georgia, is now called the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation.

42 • Chapter Two those non-sciences, characterised as ‘literary’ by Althusser, which, not really possessing an object in the scientific sense, have as their dominant function not knowledge, but the definition and instruction of practical norms? For it is not true that linguistics self-evidently has an object, the term ‘language’ being notoriously ambiguous and slippery. This is why I think that the external linguistics which I defend pertains to a philosophy of language: because its centre is constituted by a pragmatics – that is, the analysis of social relations, of a praxis.

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