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Langue and Parole Competence and performance


Two important distinctions in linguistics
made by--

Langue and Parole
语言和言语

? Ferdinand de Saussure ? The difference between Langue and Parole

? The relationship between Langue and Parole

Ferdinand de Saussure
? Ferdinand de Saussure (1857-1913) was a Swiss linguist. He was the pivotal figure (中心人物) in the transition from the 19th to 20th century, and is generally considered the founder of modern linguistics ? He was born in Geneva ( 日 内 瓦 ), in 1857, Switzerland. ? By age 15, he had learned Greek, French, German, English and Latin. ? It was not until 1906 that Saussure began teaching Course in General Linguistics that would consume the greater part of his attention until his death in 1913.

?

Course in General Linguistics 《普通语言学教程》
It was posthumously published in 1916.

It is considered Saussure’s most influential work.
His ideas in this book leave a monumental impact.

"A linguistic system is a series of differences of sound combined with a series of differences of ideas."

-Ferdinand de Saussure

Langue :语言是抽象的,稳定的。即“所有
(语言使用)使用个体头脑中存储的词语——形象 之总和。” Parole :言语是具体的,随着说话人的不同而 改变的。即“某个个体在实际语言使用环境中说出 的具体话语,这是随时间和地点变化的一个动态的 实体。” Parole is concrete; it refers to the naturally occurring language events. Langue is relatively stable, it does not change frequently; while parole varies from person to person, and from situation to situation.

the difference between langue and parole

First, langue is abstract and parole is concrete. Parole has sound and written form, which can be saw and heard. Second, langue is a generally accepted way of communication. It is social and national, which cannot be easily changed by individual. A people share the same langue. On the other hand, parole is simply a personal choice. A man can speak in his own style. Third, langue is relatively fixed and parole is temporary. Only when a new word gains public recognition, can it be accepted as part of the langue.

Let’s creat a situation: Jack said I love you to Rose in the street,The sentence itself is the parole.And how Rose understand this sentence is all about the langue.In chinese,wo ai ni means I have a strong feeling for you, and hope that I could be the only one you care. So the result may be that they two got marriged. While in America,I love you not only can be used between lovers but al so friends.So the story may have a totally ifferent edition:The Christmas day Rose sent a gift to every friend.Jack received a basketball.He was excited and said,What a gift!I love you,Rose!In such a situation,I love you is not change anything. As we can see,it is the langue that makes the same words have different understanding.

The relationship between Langue and Parole

? langue and parole are closely related. langue makes parole comprehensible, and parole is a necessary part of langue. Without langue, parole can only become meaningless sound pattern. Without parole, Langue can only express very limited ideas. In the study of linguistic, langue is the goal and parole is the tool. From the collection and analysis of parole, we could have an insight of the langue.

Competence and performance
Proposed by the American linguist N. Chomsky (psychological)

? Competence: the ideal user’s knowledge of the rules of his language (语言 能力) ? Performance: the actual use of language in concrete situations (语言运用)

Chomsky

Differences between competence and performance
Competence
It enables a speaker to produce and understand an indefinite number of sentences and to recognize grammatical mistakes and ambiguities; It is stable.

Performance

Performance is often influenced by psychological and social factors; it is not stable.

? A speaker’s performance does not always match or equal his supposed competence. ? Chomsky believes that linguists ought to study competence, rather than performance. In other words, they should discover what an ideal speaker knows of his native language.

Saussure Vs. Chomsky
? Chomsky’s competence-performance distinction is not exactly the same as, though similar to, F. de Saussure’s langue-parole distinction.
Langue-parole Langue is a social product and a set of conventions for a community Saussure looks at language from a sociological or sociolinguistic point of view Competence-performance Competence is deemed as a property of the mind of each individual N. Chomsky deals with his issues psychologically or psycholinguistically.

Thank you!


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