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By Jean-Jacques Lecercle

The aim of this e-book is to provide an actual aspiring to the formulation. English is the language of imperialism. figuring out that assertion consists of a critique of the dominant perspectives of language, either within the box of linguistics (the publication 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 e-book 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 publication offers an outline of the query of Marxism in language (from Stalin's pamphlet to Volosinov booklet, taking in an essay through Pasolini), and it seeks to build a couple of thoughts for a Marxist philosophy of language. The e-book belongs to the culture of Marxist critique of dominant ideologies. it may be relatively worthy to those that, within the fields of language research, literature and conversation reports, have determined that language isn't really purely an tool of conversation.

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And this fetishism entails two consequences, which are the final two harmful characteristics of Chomsky’s philosophy of language. The third characteristic is the refusal of history. Clearly, Chomsky is aware of the existence of linguistic change. For him, however, such phenomena are irrelevant. Individual languages – their vocabularies, for example – can indeed change, but such alterations do not affect the language, which knows neither history nor development, other than phylogenetic development, which affects the entire species, and ontogenetic development, whereby the relevant parameters for her individual linguistic situation are triggered in each speaker.

And communicative action is not based on struggle (linguistic struggle, class struggle), but Critique of the Philosophy of Language • 47 on dialogue. Mutual understanding (like co-operation in Grice’s theory of conversation, which is one of Habermas’s sources of inspiration)1 is the consensual negotiation of truth claims: Habermas’s philosophy of language is an ethics of discussion, which generalises Grice’s maxims of conversation to the social structure.

He is one of the most effective critics of the ravages of American imperialism. Certainly, he often says that he is not a Marxist; but then no one is perfect. So I am in the process of criticising the philosophy of language of someone whose political positions I fully endorse. It is also true that, when Chomsky descends onto the terrain of political theory or philosophy, the result is disappointing. The collective volume to which he contributed, Liberating Theory,15 will hardly impress a Marxist: the ecumenicism that leads the text to treat all critical theories of society, whether based on economics, ecology, gender, race or culture, on the same plane cannot replace political analysis of the social totality (and, in passing, it reduces Marxism to its most vulgar variant: economism).

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