Language in History: Theories and Texts

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Routledge, Feb 1, 2013 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 224 pages
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In Language in History, Tony Crowley provides the analytical tools for answering such questions. Using a radical re-reading of Saussure and Bahktin, he demonstrates, in four case studies, the ways in which language has been used to construct social and cultural identity in Britain and Ireland. For example, he examines the ways in which language was employed to construct a bourgeois public sphere in 18th Century England, and he reveals how language is still being used in contemporary Ireland to articulate national and political aspirations and why the Irish language died.
By bringing together linguistic and critical theory with his own sharp historical and political consciousness, Tony Crowley provides a new agenda for language study; one which acknowledges the fact that writing about history has always been determined by the historical context, and by issues of race, class and gender. Language in History represents a major contribution to the field, and an essential text for anyone interested in language, discourse and communication.
 

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Contents

Language in history
1
1 For and against Saussure
6
2 For and against Bakhtin
30
The roles of language in eighteenthcentury Britain
54
Language and cultural nationalism in nineteenthcentury Ireland
99
Language class and nation in nineteenth and early twentiethcentury Britain
147
Back to the past or on to the future? Language in history
189
Notes
200
Select bibliography
202
Index
212
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About the author (2013)

Tony Crowley is the Hartley Burr Alexander Chair in the Humanities at Scripps College. He is the author of several books, most recently "Wars of Words: The Politics of Language in Ireland 1537-2004".

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