O sporach wokół formy i funkcji we współczesnym językoznawstwie. Formalizm kontra funkcjonalizm?

Ewa Willim

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12775/LinCop.2010.003

Abstrakt


This paper focuses on the divide in current theorizing about language and the empirical, methodological, and philosophical domain of linguistics in two dominant theoretical perspectives: functionalist and formalist. The former takes communication to be the main function of language and it is impressed by the cultural, conventional nature of language. In the latter, the proper object of study is the human language faculty, the core of which is to be explained in terms of human biology, i.e. innate principles of grammar formation. It is shown here that the controversy between today’s functionalists and formalists can be traced back to the earliest days of human thinking about language. The conceptual turns that have occurred in the main formalist paradigm, Chomsky’s generative grammar, have resulted in changes in the aims and methods of formal linguistic analysis. The recent developments shifting attention away from the innate grammatical principles to the interactions between the grammar and two external interface systems (of sound and meaning) and highlighting the need of economy and simplicity as conditions inherent to a computational system that is to be an ‘optimal’ solution to the task of relating sound and meaning have brought formalists closer to functionalists than ever before. Nevertheless, the philosophical and methodological foundations of the two broad research programs, seeking an explanation of grammatical principles either in terms of the communicative needs of the speakers and principles of communicative efficiency or in terms of computational efficiency (minimum parameters and mathematical complexity), remain distinct.


Słowa kluczowe


funkcjonalizm; formalizm; język jako suma faktów językowych; język jako system; autonomia składni; rekursywność; gramatyka generatywna; minimalizm; czynniki kształtujące system językowy

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