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Explorations in Language and Linguistics

For Professor Piotr Stalmaszczyk on the Occasion of His 60th Birthday

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Edited By Łukasz Bogucki and Piotr Cap

This volume is dedicated to Professor Piotr Stalmaszczyk, Head of the Department of English and General Linguistics at the University of Łódź, on the occasion of his 60th birthday. It includes texts written by his students, colleagues and friends, dealing with a variety of urgent, widely discussed topics in the contemporary language studies. Spanning contributions from language history, philosophy, rhetoric and argumentation, methodology, and discourse studies, it provides an authoritative outline of the field and a timely response to the existing challenges, thus making for a concise handbook of modern linguistics. It is recommended to graduate students of philology, as well as researchers working in linguistics and other disciplines within the broad spectrum of humanities and social sciences.

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Cognitive Linguistics and Biolinguistics: On the Path to Rapprochement? (Henryk Kardela)

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Henryk Kardela

Cognitive Linguistics and Biolinguistics: On the Path to Rapprochement?

Abstract: Drawing on insights from cognitive semiotics, the chapter explores the plausibility of rapprochement between two main research traditions in contemporary linguistic research – cognitive linguistics and biolinguistics. The emerging answer is largely negative, given (i) the general désintéressment of what is being done in “the other camp” regarding specific theoretical solutions proposed, and (ii) the completely divergent claims about the nature of language and grammar as defined by the two approaches.

Keywords: biolinguistics, cognitive linguistics, cognitive semiotics, interdisciplinarity, triangulation

1 Fragestellung

The present chapter discusses the prospects for rapprochement between two major strands in contemporary linguistic research: the generative grammar/minimalism program and the heterogeneous cognitive linguistic enterprise (involving theorists such as Ronald Langacker, Mark Johnson, George Lakoff, Zoltàn Kövecses, Adele Goldberg, William Croft, Gilles Fauconnier, and Mark Turner1), in light of Cedric Boeckx and Constantina Theofanopoulou’s (2014; henceforth BT) assertion that perhaps time has come to bring into contact

two linguistic traditions, one (“Chomskyan”) seeking to reduce linguistic complexity to a set of elementary primitives, and the other (“Cognitive”) seeking to account for linguistic processes in terms of general ‘cognitive’ mechanisms[.],

whereby the challenge ahead (ibid.)

is to marry these two traditions, showing that elementary primitives used by Chomskyan linguists to explain various linguistic phenomena can be understood in terms of generic ← 105 | 106 → processes that...

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