Course in General Linguistics by Ferdinand de Saussure

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Langue And Parole

What's the difference between 'langue' and 'parole' according to Ferdinand de Saussure?

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In his Course of General Linguistics,  Ferdinand de Saussure introduced terms that explain the different ways in which we communicate.

Among the terms he introduced, he included “langue” and “parole.” First, let us establish that these two terms comprise some of the basic elements of communication. They are types of “building blocks” within language. As such, let us define language. 

Language itself is a faculty of speech; an ability to speak is part of what makes humans unique. We all possess the ability inherently.

Now, within language, there is langue, or the system and capacity of communication that we all possess.

Parole is the actual action that we engage in when we speak. It is, essentially, speaking. Another way of saying it:  langue is the universal system, while parole is the pivotal agent that contributes to the expansion of the system.

Let us expand a bit more:

Langue is a composite of all the traits of a language; think of it as a big container that hosts all the parts...

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