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Reception of Linguistic Theories of Structuralists and Descriptivists in Soviet Linguistics from 1952 to 1991 (a Study with Reference to a Journal)

Student: Mariia Alekseeva

Supervisor: Boris Gasparov

Faculty: School of Arts and Humanities

Educational Programme: Philology (Bachelor)

Year of Graduation: 2020

The current research is devoted to Soviet linguistics, the study of which has received little attention nowadays both in Russia and in the West. The purpose of this study is to analyze the reception of structuralism and descriptivism in the main linguistic journal of the USSR “Topic in the study of language” in 1952-1991, i.e. citation patterns of such foreign linguists as F. de Saussure and L. Hjelmslev (European structuralism), E. Sepir and L. Bloomfield (American Descriptivism) for four decades. It is highly important to determine the main changes in the attitude towards the mentioned scientists, structuralism and descriptivism in general, indicating the possible causes of these changes. It is assumed that the attitude towards Western linguistics was extremely negative on the whole in the Soviet period, and therefore, none of the theories of structuralism and descriptivism could be fully accepted in the journal “Topic in the study of language” in 1952-1991. This study is mainly qualitative. The main conclusions of this research can contribute to the study of the history of Soviet linguistics and knowledge sharing process between different countries and cultures.

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