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BOOK NOTICES 699 part in the presentation and publication of current research. The Chicago, Berkeley, and Northeastern Linguistics Societies have had the highest profiles, but other organizations have made important contributions. One of these is the Mid-America Linguistics Conference, whose published proceedings date from a meeting in 1971 at the University of Missouri, Columbia . Since then it has met at a number of universities in the Midwestern and Mountain states, and has published its proceedings each year. The present volume contains an invited paper by Steven R. Anderson, 'Rules as "morphemes " in a theory of inflection', and 38 contributed papers which run a full gamut oftopics. Speaking as an Americanist, I was glad to find no fewer than 11 papers in my field—on Comanche, Creek, Winnebago, SouthernPaiute, Koasati, Upper Chehalis, Northern UtoAztecan , Guarijio, Jacaltec, Kiliwa, and Inuktitut ('Eskimo'). A welcome feature of the 1983 volume is the list, on the back cover, of all the previous Conference volumes, with their prices and the addresses from which they may be ordered. Over the years, I have periodically tried to trace fugitive references to volumes in this series, and have in general found it a difficult process: the volumes are hard to find in bibliographies, and equally hard to obtain through librarians or booksellers. Perhaps because of the lack of a centralized headquarters for the Mid-America Conference, I seldom get a notice of the annual meeting, or of its volume of proceedings; and this 1983 volume is only the second received for review in Language. It appears that much valuable linguistic research is being produced in Mid-America, but is not being adequately disseminated outside that area. [William Bright, UCLA.] Einführung in die Linguistik: Entwicklung , Probleme, Methoden. By Gerhard Nickel. (Grundlagen der Anglistik und Amerikanistik, 10.) Berlin: Erich Schmidt, 1979. Pp. 181. It seems most appropriate to evaluate this book in terms of its explicit intent, which is to be 'a concise, easily manageable survey of the full range' of linguistic inquiry (5). N addresses himself specifically to first-year students of English language and literature at German-speaking universities. He argues in his foreword (58 ) that, despite appearances to the contrary, this audience has not previously had an introductory textbook which presents a sufficiently broad overview of linguistics in the extremely terse form required by students whose schedules leave them increasingly little time fortheoretical or even applied/theoretical language courses. N therefore attempts to meet the need for a brief work covering 'the historical development of linguistics, its intersections and interactions with other disciplines ..., the problems with which it is concerned, and the methods used by the most important current approaches to the field ...' Judged by such self-imposed criteria of maximal breadth and brevity of coverage, N's Einf ührung is an unqualified success. In just over 150 pages of actual text, he manages to present nearly as many topics as does, say, Fromkin & Rodman's Introduction to language (3rd edn., 1983), which is well over twice as long. Thus N's Ch. I, 'Basic preliminary remarks' (17-25), after defining the concept 'linguistics', considers the 'sense and usefulness' of the discipline for communication in general, literary science, (foreign-)language instruction, medicine, law, criminology, technical vocabularies, translation , missionary activity, social work, and psychology . Similarly, Ch. II, "The history of linguistics [before 1900]' (26-52), first surveys linguistic investigations in Ancient Greece, Rome, and India; then in the Middle Ages, Renaissance , and the Age ofRationalism; and lastly the wide range of those in the 19th century— along with the associated 'philosophical issues'. Finally, Ch. Ill, 'Linguistics in the 20th century' (53-158), starts by discussing Saussure and the origins of structuralism, and continues with an overview of no fewer than nine structuralist 'schools' of linguistics (in the broadest sense): Genevans, Copenhageners, Pragueans, American taxonomists, tagmemicists, Hallidayan systemicists, dependency theorists, stratificationalists , and transformational generativists of three different stripes (standard theorists, case grammarians, and generative semanticists). The chapter concludes with a treatment of semantics , sociolinguistics, psycholinguistics, 'pragmalinguistics ' (= pragmatics), and discourse studies. The brevity which buys all this breadth is at times so extreme as to be scarcely believable. For example, all of psycholinguistics is treated 700 LANGUAGE, VOLUME 62...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1535-0665
Print ISSN
0097-8507
Pages
pp. 699-700
Launched on MUSE
2015-04-01
Open Access
No
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