International Society of Philology
2017 Special GMP
2017 Gold Medal Winner
The Congress 2016 is proud to announced that the winner of the Gold Medal of Philology in memory of Alfred Nobel 2017 is professor Noam Chomsky (Massachusetts Institute of Technology (USA).
Noam Chomsky is credited with inaugurating the 'cognitive revolution'. He is largely responsible for establishing the field as a formal, natural science, moving it away from the procedural form of structural linguistics that was dominant during the mid-20th century. As such, he has become known as "the father of modern linguistics".
The basis to Chomsky's linguistic theory is rooted in bio linguistics, holding that the principles underlying the structure of language are biologically determined in the human mind and hence genetically transmitted. He therefore argues that all humans share the same underlying linguistic structure, irrespective of sociocultural differences. In adopting this position, Chomsky rejects the radical behaviorist psychology of B.F. Skinner which views the mind as a tabula rasa ("blank slate") and thus treats language as learned behavior. Accordingly, he argues that language is a unique evolutionary development of the human species and is unlike modes of communication used by any other animal species. Chomsky's nativist, internalist view of language is consistent with the philosophical school of 'rationalism', and is contrasted with the anti-nativist, externalist view of language, which is consistent with the philosophical school of 'empiricism'