"L’usage infini de moyens finis": la créativité langagière de l’être humain

Journal title CADMO
Author/s Gerda Haßler
Publishing Year 2007 Issue 2007/2
Language Italian Pages 21 P. 7-27 File size 293 KB
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The claim that language makes infinite use of finite means has been stated repeatedly over the last forty years by linguists seeking to find the origin of linguistic creativity. N. Chomsky, the founder of generative grammar, provided the impetus for this line of research in Cartesian Linguistics, published in 1966, where he quoted Wilhelm von Humboldt’s now-famous sentence. The paper aims at integrating the restricted concept of creativity as made familiar in generative linguistics with a theory of creativity in the realm of lexical reference. It discusses examples of linguistic creativity with regard to syntax, morphology and semantics. Finally, the paper deals with the creative processes active in language acquisition, which now and then lead to errors through over-generalisation. Keywords creativity, syntagmatic combination, word creation, metaphor, language change

Gerda Haßler, "L’usage infini de moyens finis": la créativité langagière de l’être humain in "CADMO" 2/2007, pp 7-27, DOI: