History of European Ideas 42 (6):808-818 (2016)

SUMMARYThis essay discusses Hans Aarsleff's long battle to demonstrate the importance of the French and British thinkers of the mid-eighteenth century to the development of modern linguistic thought. Contesting claims that German scholars were the first to develop historicised theories of language, Aarsleff, along with his Princeton colleagues Lionel Gossman and Anthony Grafton, helped pioneer longue durée studies of the history of philology and of historiography that cross national boundaries as well as the so-called Sattelzeit. Although the importance of his work was, for a long time, little appreciated by modern intellectual historians, this essay argues that it is time that we fully learned Aarsleff's lessons.
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DOI 10.1080/01916599.2016.1152728
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