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Bedeutungswandel. Michel Bréal und DIetrich Busse

Abstract : This study tries to point out parallels between the conception of the linguistic sign and of semantic change in Bréal’s and Busse’s studies. Besides their view of language and its development the authors’ methods are of interest as well as the pattern they offer in order to describe and explain semantic change. Until only few years ago, Bréal was totally misjudged by linguists. General accounts of semantic change still fail to make reference to him. Only in the last decades of the previous century did his work find the attention it deserves. Busse assimilates several existing concepts (e.g. those by Humboldt, Wittgenstein, Grice und Foucault). He strongly objects to traditional concepts of semantic change and above all he thoroughly disagrees with structuralism and its attainments. Despite the title of his first monograph, historical semantics is entirely ignored in favour of the history of concepts. He categorically denies the existence of the linguistics sign’s meaning as a purely theoretical abstraction. The publications of Bréal and Busse show various parallels. It is astonishing that the theory which Busse formulated twenty years ago, has almost identical results. Therefore, it is even more surprising that there is not a single positive mention of Bréal in Busse’s writings. Conversely, it is quite striking, in how far Bréal’s theories give the impression that he has already anticipated a semantic of discourse apart from pragmatics and structuralism.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 3:33:25 PM
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Annette Schmehl-Postaï. Bedeutungswandel. Michel Bréal und DIetrich Busse. Humanities and Social Sciences. Université de Nantes UFR Lettres; Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf, 2006. German. ⟨tel-02474712⟩

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