On Coseriu’s legacy


  • Esa Itkonen University of Turku




Eugenio Coseriu, Functionalism, Theory of language change, diachronic linguistics.


This article examines Eugenio Coseriu’s overall theory of language and linguistics, based on his 1974 book Synchronie, Diachronie und Geschichte (originally in Spanish, in 1958). The topics that are singled out for analysis include the role of consciousness and the nature of functional explanation. Coseriu’s ideas are shown to have strong affinities with those of Hermann Paul and William Dwight Whitney. His humanistic conception of linguistics is vindicated vis-à-vis its rivals, i.e. physicalism and Darwinism.


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How to Cite

Itkonen, E. (2011). On Coseriu’s legacy. ENERGEIA. ONLINE JOURNAL FOR LINGUISTICS, LANGUAGE PHILOSOPHY AND HISTORY OF LINGUISTICS, (III), 1–29. https://doi.org/10.55245/energeia.2011.001