What do we talk about, when we talk about the history of linguistics?

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This paper examines the representation of the history of the language sciences as transmitted through introductory textbooks on linguistics published in the United States in the past sixty years. I analyze the role that textbooks assign to the history of the discipline, the value they invest in it, and the orientations toward earlier language scholarship that these texts implicitly model for students. The goal is to discover, in the context of U.S. higher education, what it is that we have talked about when we talk about the history of linguistics, and what modern students take away from that discussion.


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