Proyecto docente
Oferta sin docencia (a extinguir)
Plan 239 Lic. en Filología Inglesa
Principales modelos teóricos de análisis y descripción de la lengua inglesa anteriores al siglo XX.
Programa Básico
Through first-hand knowledge of the primary sources -a selection of representative texts- this historical view of the
main descriptive patterns of English from the beginning to the early 20th century will provide students with the key to
understanding the peculiarities of each age. The order of the selections is chronological, but the course will teach
students to discern inner currents running through all the set texts- e.g. the idea of an English Academy of the
Language, the spelling reform, the goals of grammar, etc- that should allow them to make alternative arrangements.
Programa de Teoría
I. The development of language study in the West: Classical Antiquity.
1. The ancient Greeks: Dionysius Thrax Techné grammatiké (Art of Grammar) (100 B.C.).
2. Roman adaptation of Greek grammar: Priscian Institutiones Grammaticae (500 A.D.).
II. Linguistic Study in the early Middle Ages in the British Isles.
1. Linguistic study in the early Middle Ages in England.
2. English grammarians.
2.1. An early medieval grammarian on grammar: Wynfreth-Boniface, Praefatio ad Sigibertum (c.719).
2.2. A didactic grammar written in the vernacular: Ælfric, Excerptiones de arte grammatica anglicae (Excerpts of
grammar in English) and Colloquium (c. 990).
3. Linguistic study in the second half of the Middle Ages: An overview.
III. The grammatical tradition and the rise of the vernaculars: Renaissance and 17th century England.
1. (Un)suitability of English as a scholarly language.
1.1. The variability of English: Towards the standardization of English.
1.2. Lexical growth: The debate over borrowings. Richard Carew, The Excellency of the English Tongue (1595/96).
1.3. The need for a spelling reform. William Bullokar, Booke at Large, for the Amendment of Ortographie for English
Speech (1580).
1.4. The need for an English dictionary. Robert Cawdrey, A Table Alphabeticall (1604).
IV. The rise of prescriptive grammar in the 18th century.
1. Calls for an English Academy of the Language.
2. Opposition to the idea of an Academy of the English Language.
3. Individual efforts to impose order on the pronunciation, vocabulary and grammar of English.
3.1. Pronunciation. John Walker, Pronouncing Dictionary of English (1774).
3.2. Vocabulary. Samuel Johnson, A Dictionary of the English Language (1755). Noah Webster, An American
Dictionary of the English Language (1828).
3.3. Grammar. Robert Lowth, Short Introduction to English Grammar (1762). Joseph Priestley, The Rudiments of
English Grammar (1761).
V. The beginning of ´scientific´ linguistics in the 19th century.
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1. The New Philology.
2. Early 20th-century linguistics: Beginning of descriptive linguistics.
3. Henry Sweet: The origins of a structural understanding of the language. Henry Sweet, The Practical Study of
Languages (1899); Handbook of Phonetics (1877).
VI. American structuralism or descriptive linguistics in the U.S.
1. Anthropological linguistics: Franz Boas; Edward Sapir, Language: An Introduction to the Study of Speech (1921);
Benjamin L. Whorf.
2. Behaviourism: Leonard Bloomfield, Language (1933).
VII. Conclusion: The traditional vs. the structural model of description of English.
Programa Práctico
Assessment procedures and criteria:
The teacher expects students to work regularly throughout the year. Thus, active participation in class debates will
always add to the final mark; class attendance is therefore advisable. Regular handing-in of commentaries will also be
marked positively.
Students will take a compulsory final exam where they are expected to show confidence in duscussing how
English/American men of letters have approached language matters on the basis of what a certain author says.
BOLTON, Whitney French (sel. & ed.), The English Language: Essays by English and American Men of Letters 14901839, Cambridge: C.U.P., 1966.
KÜHLWEIN, Wolfgang (ed. lit.), Linguistics in Great Britain. Vol. 1, History of Linguistics. Vol. 2, Contemporary
Linguistics, Tubingen: Max Niemeyer, 1971.
TUCKER, Sucie I. (ed.). English Examined. Two Centuries of Comment on the Mother- Tongue. Cambridge: C.U.P.,
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