F. de Saussure’s Semiotic Theory: the Basic Terms
After the shift from the investigation of languages and their evolution to the issues related to the contemporary use of language occurred, there was a need to find new research methods in linguistics. Structuralism, represented by Swiss linguist Ferdinand de Saussure (1857 – 1913) and his students served as one and the most prominent such options for new approaches that had far-reaching consequences in the future. Taking into consideration the importance of his work, F. de Saussure is called the father of modern semiotics, the creator of “‘Copernican revolution’ in Western linguistic thought” (Harris, Taylor, 1997: 210).
The background of F. de Saussure’s carrier was linguistic studies, where his special interest area was Indo-European languages (Harris, Taylor, 1997: 211) like for many linguists of the second half and the end of the 18th century. At the age of 29, F. de Saussure published “Mémoire on the Primitive System of Vowels in the Indo-European Languages” (Lehmann, 1967: 217), but, as Harris and Taylor points out, F. de Saussure felt “the theoretical shortcomings and inconsistencies of language studies in the 19th century” (Harris, Taylor, 1997: 210) during his academic career.…
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