Saussure and his Interpreters is the first major reassessment of
the reception of Saussure's ideas throughout the twentieth century.
That Saussure's work profoundly influenced developments in such
diverse fields as linguistics, anthropology, psychology and
literary studies is denied by no one. But what exactly Saussure's
views were taken to be by his interpreters has not hitherto been
subject to any comprehensive critical survey. How well were
Saussure's ideas understood by those who took them up? Or how badly
misunderstood? And why? The answers to these questions address
central issues in the history of Western culture.
Each chapter focuses on one particular interpreter of Saussure's
work, but many others are mentioned in context for purposes of
comparison, and attention is drawn to connections and disparities
between their interpretations. Those whose interpretations are
examined in detail include Bloomfield, Hjelmslev, Jakobson, L
vi-Strauss, Chomsky, Barthes and Derrida.
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