The ideal scaffolding of language

Husser's Fourth logical investigation in the light of cognitive linguistics

Peer F. Bundgaard

pp. 49-80

One of the central issues in linguistics is whether or not language should be considered a self-contained, autonomous formal system, essentially reducible to the syntactic algorithms of meaning construction (as Chomskyan grammar would have it), or a holistic-functional system serving the means of expressing pre-organized intentional contents and thus accessible with respect to features and structures pertaining to other cognitive subsystems or to human experience as such (as Cognitive Linguistics would have it). The latter claim depends critically on the existence of principles governing the composition of semantic contents. Husserl's fourth Logical Investigation is well known as a genuine precursor for Chomskyan grammar. However, I will establish the heterogeneous character of the Investigation and show that the whole first part of it is devoted to the exposition of a semantic combinatorial system cognate to the one elaborated within Cognitive Linguistics. I will thus show how theoretical results in linguistics may serve to corroborate and shed light on those parts of Husserl's Fourth Investigation that have traditionally been dismissed as vague or simply ignored.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1023/B:PHEN.0000041835.41703.49

Full citation:

Bundgaard, P. F. (2004). The ideal scaffolding of language: Husser's Fourth logical investigation in the light of cognitive linguistics. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 3 (1), pp. 49-80.

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