Volume 8, Issue 2-3
  • ISSN 0302-5160
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9781
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SUMMARYAl-Marzuqi, a lesser known grammarian of the 5th/llth century, and the author of the epistle "Words that express generality and globalness and the difference between them", set out to show the way in which elements expressing generality and globalness function in Arabic. He starts from the idea that the language must have means to refer to 'intelligible species' (al-'ajnas al-macluma)y the way it has means to refer to "the perceptible concrete things" (al-'a'ydn al-makhsusa). The respective significations are studied in relation to others such as definite/indefinite, entity/plurality, etc. What renders the work of interest is not only the grouping together of certain elements which modern linguistics classifies as 'indefinite quantitives' but, first and foremost, the fact that the Arab philologist examines the relationship between the general and the particular in language from a dynamic perspective, as a movement of thinking which is permanently under the influence of norm, usage and reason. Significant, in this respect, is the way in which he analyses certain interrogatives such as kay fa "how" which are general and indefinite in themselves (in the 'language', as one would call them in modern terminology) and become particular in 'speech', in the interaction between interlocutors who know each other, and who start from certain presuppositions and leave aside 'except' (as al-Marzuqi puts it) everything that is not of interest. The subtle analysis of the way in which language elements function within conversational strategy, the attention paid to the moulding of meaning in a given situation place the epistle on a line of thinking that leads to the modern theory of speech acts.RÉSUMÉL'auteur de l'épitre "Les mots qui expriment la globalite et la generalite et la difference entre fes deux", un grammairien arabe du V/XI siecle assez peu connu, al-Marzuqi, se propose de montrer comment fonctionnent les elements se rapportant a la totalite (la globalite) et a l'espece, en partant du postulat que la langue doit posseder des moyens pour exprimer les "especes intelligibles" (al-'ajnas al-macluma), tout comme elle possede des moyens pour exprimer les "choses concretes perceptibles" (al-'aCyan al-makhsusa). Ces significations sont etudiees par rapport a d'autres, telles que le defini/1'in-defini, l'unite/la pluralite, etc. Ce qui confere un interet special a cet opuscule qui sort, d'une certaine maniere, du cadre de la problematique traditionnelle des ouvrages grammaticaux arabes, n'est pas seulement le groupement de certains elements que la linguistique moderne envisage comme 'quantitatifs indefinis', mais aussi la position adoptee par le philologue arabe, qui examine le rapport entre le general et le particulier dans une perspective dynamique, comme un mouvement de la pensee determinee par la norme, l'usage, la rai-son. De ce point de vue, l'analyse que l'auteur propose pour une serie d'ele-ments qui servent a l'interrogation — par exemple kayfa "comment" — est tres significative. Ces elements sont, par eux-memes, generaux et indefinis dans la 'langue' et deviennent particuliers dans la 'parole', dans le cadre de l'interaction des interlocuteurs qui se connaissent, qui partent de certaines presuppositions en laissant de cote 'exception faite' (dit al-Marzuql) de tout ce qui ne les interesse pas. Par l'analyse nuancee du fonctionnement des elements de la langue dans le cadre d'une strategie de la conversation, par l'attention pretee a la constitution de la signification dans le cadre d'une situation donnee, l'epitre se situe dans une direction de pensee qui aboutit aux theories modernes des actes de langage.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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