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Cognitive Linguistics

Editor-in-Chief: Newman, John

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Volume 27, Issue 4 (Nov 2016)

Issues

Turning back to experience in Cognitive Linguistics via phenomenology

Jordan Zlatev
Published Online: 2016-10-13 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/cog-2016-0057

Abstract

Cognitive Linguistics began as an apotheosis of lived experience, but has over the years diversified into many different stands, interpreting the notion of “experience” and along with it the notion of “cognition” in conflicting ways: individual or social, prelinguistic or linguistic, unconscious or conscious? These issues are not only philosophical as they hold crucial implications for methodology. Here, I propose that most of them can be resolved with the help of phenomenology, “the study of human experience and of the ways things present themselves to us in and through such experience” (Sokolowski 2000. Introduction to phenomenology. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2). Cogent syntheses are proposed to the individual/social and prelinguistic/linguistic debates, showing that scholars like Langacker, Talmy and Itkonen have focused on complementary aspects of implicitly phenomenological investigations. Third-person, “objective” methods are necessary for extending the scope of such investigations, but epistemologically secondary. Thus, the focus of Cognitive Linguistics can be brought back to experience, albeit in a more mature manner than 30 years ago.

Keywords: consciousness; phenomenology; methodology; grounding; sedimentation

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About the article

Received: 2016-05-22

Revised: 2016-08-09

Accepted: 2016-08-18

Published Online: 2016-10-13

Published in Print: 2016-11-01


Citation Information: Cognitive Linguistics, ISSN (Online) 1613-3641, ISSN (Print) 0936-5907, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/cog-2016-0057.

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