Volume 1, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0302-5160
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9781
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes


It is the thesis of the paper that Urbain Domergue's (1745-1810) opposition, voiced during the years of the French Revolution, against Antoine Rivarol's (1753-1801) explanation of the Clarté française on the basis of the rationalist doctrine of 'natural' word order was not primarily motivated by Rivarol's negative attitude towards the Revolution. On the contrary, it is demonstrated that immediately after the appearance of Rivarol's Discours (1784) Domergue opposed Rivarol's theory of the 'natural' word order of French (advocating instead a sensualist position established by Condillac), and that Domergue's arguments put forward in 1799 were essentially those of 1785, though now with additions furnished by predominantly philosophical and political experiences made during the period of the Revolution. Domergue's reaction was in some way paralleled by Dominique-Joseph Garat (1749-1833) who took a similar stand on Rivarol's Discours in 1785.During the Revolution, Dominique-Joseph Garat held public office as a minister of justice under Robespierre and later as a leading representative of the Ideologists (i.e., adherents of Condillac's sensualist philosophy) and a member — like Domergue — of the 'Institut National des Sciences et des Arts', newly founded in 1795. Later, as for instance in the case of Louis de Bonald (1754-1840), a spiritual chief of the Restauration, the motivation behind a criticism of particular linguistic views took an opposite direction: He radically objected not only to the Ideologists' philosophy of language and mind but also, hardly less vigorously, to anything the Revolution might have meant. Instead, the rationalist conception of ordre naturel was reinstated as a reflection of a 'natural' social order.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...

  • Article Type: Research Article
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error