John Searle (essay date 29 June 1972)
SOURCE: “Chomsky's Revolution in Linguistics,” in New York Review of Books, June 29, 1972, pp. 16-24.
[In the following excerpt, Searle provides an overview of Chomsky's theories about language and their impact and influence on the study of linguistics. While hailing the importance of Chomsky's insights into the structure of syntax, Searle finds inadequacies in the semantic component of his linguistic theory.]
Throughout the history of the study of man there has been a fundamental opposition between those who believe that progress is to be made by a rigorous observation of man's actual behavior and those who believe that such observations...
(The entire section is 9675 words.)