Chomsky -- Put up or blah blah

Charles Brown CharlesB at
Thu Mar 30 06:59:44 PST 2000

Thanks muchly (oops bad grammar :>))

I think I got Vygotsky and Volosinov mixed up. Volosinov may have been more of the linguist, emphasizing language as activity as you mention below.

>>> "Scott Martens" <smartens at> 03/29/00 01:47PM >>>

It's been a while since I read Vygotsky, but I think the short answer is no, not really. Vygotsky's notions of mediation may be part of the inspiration for recent Russian lexical semantics (which requires a certain amount of mechanical mediation between texts and meanings), but I can't think of any reference to that effect.

I remember Vygotsky for Activity Theory, which is primarily a school of psychology and education. Most of what he described would be considered pragmatic rather than semantic in the current dependency syntax terminology. It seems to me that the current big man in activity theory is Alexei Leont'ev, who I think has had a few nice things to say about linguistics but hasn't contributed much. I don't remember much about him, so I can't be sure.

Tesniere is really the more important influence.


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