El alcance explicativo del funcionalismo: sus limitaciones

Luis Javier Eguren Gutiérrez

Resumen

Generative Grammar has expressed two major criticisms upon functional views on human language: the indeterminacy of the concept "function of language" and the inadequacy of the proposed subsidiarity of structure in relation to the goals language may fulfil. In this paper we offer evidence in support of the generative attitude. A careful look through the most outstanding theories on the functions of language - e.g., Bühler, Morris, Jakobson, Martinet, Halliday, Hymes...- reveals serious discrepancies amongst them all on the definition of "external function", its number and its hierarchy. In this sense, the strong generative idealization of its field of research seems to be well motivated. There is no functional explanation, even in the philogenetic process, for abstract and simple principles that deeply characterize human languages, such as those developed within the Binding Theory (Chomsky, 1981, 1986). Ontogenetically at least, the existence of genetically determined principles, which constitute the hard core of language structure, has to be hypothesized if we wish to solve the so called "Plato's problem": the poverty of stimulus.

Palabras clave

Taxonomía; Teorías del lenguaje; Funciones del lenguaje; Conductismo; Funcionalismo; Sociolingüística; Lingüística teórica; Jakobson, Roman; Martinet, André; Chomsky, Noam; Hymes, Dell; Halliday, M.A.K.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.14198/ELUA1988-1989.5.06





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