Ignorance of Linguistics: A Note on Michael Devitt’s Ignorance of Language

Croatian Journal of Philosophy 9 (1):21-34 (2009)
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Michael Devitt has argued that Chomsky, along with many other Linguists and philosophers, is ignorant of the true nature of Generative Linguistics. In particular, Devitt argues that Chomsky and others wrongly believe the proper object of linguistic inquiry to be speakers' competences, rather than the languages that speakers are competent with. In return, some commentators on Devitt's work have returned the accusation, arguing that it is Devitt who is ignorant about Linguistics. In this note, I consider whether there might be less to this apparent dispute than meets the eye. -/- .

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Guy Longworth
University of Warwick


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