The School will examine two of the main approaches to the study of language: functionalism and cognitivism, it will analyze compatibility, analogies and possible differences. The functionalist school, which dates back to the early historic tradition, studies, since the beginning of the last century, the relationship between form and linguistic function and proposes an approach to language which is strictly linked to its use and context. Cognitive linguistics is a more recent branch that developed in the last 30 years within the North-American cognitive movement, some of whose fundaments it will then criticize. Cognitive linguistics also focuses on the importance of the relation between form and function, and it individuates in particular the cognitive schemes subjected to thought, perception and language, which determine the linguistic form. Unlike other theories that study language essentially as a formal and autonomous process, both cognitive and functional linguistics strictly correlate syntactic structure and semantic organization as dependant one from the other, refusing the hypothesis of language as separated and independent from other cognitive and perceptive mechanisms.
The lecturers are: William Croft, Holger Diessel, Martin Haspelmath, Michael Tomasello.
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