Research and schooling
1. In the past, linguistic theories and models were often constructed according to purely internal considerations of describing language structures. Whether these theories and models would be useful to other disciplines concerned with language, and whether they would contribute to methodologies for improving language-based skills among society at large, were issues of small concern. A linguistics of texts, on the other hand, as a sector of an integrated science of texts, places resolute emphasis on addressing these issues. After all, text linguistics needs the cooperation of adjacent disciplines in order to come to terms with its most essential objects of inquiry. And if the strategies and procedures which operate during the production and reception of texts are indeed controlled by standards of efficiency, effectiveness, and appropriateness (I.23), then a linguistics of texts should have considerable potential for contributing to language training (cf. Kohonen & Enkvist (eds.) 1978). We shall attempt to outline in this chapter some ways in which the approach presented so far might be useful in interdisciplinary research and language-related schooling.
2. The full extent of the implications that could be explored might well demand a separate book. We will only pass in review over a few concerns of those domains in which texts are either an object of inquiry or a means of management: cognitive science, sociology, anthropology, consulting psychology, reading, writing, literary studies, translation studies, contrastive linguistics, foreign-language teaching, semiotics, and computer science.
3. Cognitive science is a comparatively new field integrating the concerns of cognitive psychology (cf. III.34) and computer science (cf. X.26ff.) (see also I.24; Bobrow & Collins (eds.) 1975; Collins 1977b). Texts are only one of the centres of interest in this field. Important progress has also been attained in the study of the organization of world knowledge in human memory and access; and of the procedural utilization of meaning (cf. Chapter V). We cannot yet observe the mechanisms of learning, knowing, and recalling meaningful material within the mind itself. But we can safely assume that the observable activities of textual communication must be in part determined by the organization of memory and the nature of meaningful behaviour.1
4. Plainly, textual communication is a crucial domain for building theories of cognition at large. Texts are essential for reporting mental events as far as the latter are accessible to conscious awareness. Textual communication is the most elaborately and subtly differentiated system of human symbolic behaviour: it allows people to maintain and agree upon distinctions that are unmanageably fuzzy or disputable in other modes of behaviour. Quite possibly, textual communication entails the major skills for rational human behaviour in general: (a) problem-solving capacities; (b) planning capacities; (c) capacities for generating, testing, and revising hypotheses; (d) capacities for pattern-matching; (e) processing ease for expected or probable occurrences; (f) processing depth for non-expected or improbable occurrences; (g) capacities for reducing complexity to meet processing limitations; (h) capacities for selective focus of attention; (i) capacities for maintaining continuity of experience; and (j) capacities for projecting or inferring these various dispositions and activities among the other participants in interaction.2
5. Intelligence arises, we believe, not merely from rapid, accurate storage and recovery of specific knowledge—an unfortunate misconception in both psychology and education—but rather from the ability to apply or adapt a small set of powerful skills and procedures to any particular task at hand (Beaugrande 1980a; Papert 1980). It is the capacity to work with high power (in the sense of Minsky & Papert 1974: 59) by recognizing and performing any given task as an instantiation of a general operation type, such as those enumerated in X.4. The decision and selection processes demanded in textual communication must function at so deep a level, such that content can be conveyed and situations can be managed without relying on predetermined texts. People can recall the purpose of a discourse after forgetting the surface texts used (Schweller, Brewer & Dahl 1976). On the level of conscious attention, syntax, meaning, information, and planning are processed in terms of high-power typologies of occurrences and relationships, not in terms of particular words and structures (cf. III.14, 17, 35; IV.3; V.25ff; VII.7ff; VIII.10ff; etc.). Research on textual communication may well lead to processing models with powerful implications for the development of intelligence at large.
6. To meet these changing priorities, a new perspective may evolve upon issues treated in traditional linguistics (cf. 0.6). The isolation of “distinctive features”, practised extensively in descriptive linguistics (II.19), may be redirected toward those features which are actually consulted during language operations. The structural analysis of potentially ambiguous sentences, a frequent exercise in transformational grammar, may be re-oriented toward human processing strategies that preclude or resolve ambiguities in actual usage.3 The notion of “presuppositions” as prior knowledge entailed by a single sentence, a topic of numerous discussions among philosophers (cf. Petöfi & Franck (eds.) 1974), might be superseded by the development of a general theory of how world-knowledge is utilized in communication. The logicians’ preoccupation with the “existence” of individual objects and the “truth conditions” for sentences could be supplanted by the investigation of the cognitive thresholds at which humans are disposed to recognize objects and believe statements (cf. V.40). Perhaps the issues which have resisted conclusive treatment from speculative or formalistic standpoints may become decidable from an empirical one.
7. If, as we suggested in X.4, textual communication entails the major skills found in rational human behaviour at large, the usefulness of a science of texts should be extremely wide and versatile. Many disciplines besides linguistics deal with aspects of problem-solving, planning, hypothesis-testing, and attention. Moreover, texts are the most widespread vehicle of scientific exploration and discussion. The status of theories and models in most sciences is no better than the status of the accepted mode of discourse.4 The scientists themselves cannot belong to a scientific community until they have acquired its conventions of discourse and argumentation. Instruction, description, explanation, examination, interviews, questionnaires, research reports—all these commonplace uses of texts are as indispensable to science as the most elaborate technological instruments.
8. In many disciplines, texts themselves are among the objects of inquiry. Sociologists are concerned with notions like “symbolic interaction” as expounded by George Henry Mead, and “strategic interaction” as expounded by Erving Goffman.5 Language skills figure prominently in the sociology of schooling, and the study of social class differences.6 Anthropologists investigate folktales, rituals, litigation, and other cultural institutions centred around the use of certain text types.7 Psychiatrists and consulting psychologists depend upon therapeutic discourse for the discovery and treatment of mental illness.8
9. The study of reading has advanced considerably in recent years. A science of texts should be able to assist in defining readability as the extent to which a presentation is suitable for reception among given groups. Early probes relied heavily on surface aspects, such as length and frequency of words and the complexity of sentences (cf. surveys in Klare 1963; Groeben 1978). Such simple methods were straightforward in their application, but rather inconclusive as accurate measurements. As Rothkopf (1976: 108) remarks, “the lexical characteristic chiefly tapped is familiarity. Vividness and concreteness are neglected; exposition and organization are disregarded completely; content factors are ignored.” In effect, the early measures took no account of textuality beyond some obvious factors in cohesion.
10. To appreciate coherence, readability measures would have to consider how text-presented knowledge interacts with world-knowledge (cf. IX.37ff.). For example, readability has been shown to suffer if material needed to match elements of a story schema is removed (Thorndyke 1977); schemas are evidently used even by very young children.9 The hierarchical organization of material according to its importance and generality affects readability also (Meyer 1975, 1977): passages rated by judges as the most important were shown to be the best remembered by various groups of readers.
11. On the other hand, readability cannot be optimised simply by striving for the best possible match between text-presented knowledge and prior world knowledge. The resulting text would possess radically low informativity and hence be devoid of interest. This flaw pervades much of the reading materials now used in education. Readers would gladly expend additional effort upon a text if the unexpected occurrences lead to rewarding insights. We discussed in VII.21ff. how the ‘gorilla’-text was constructed according to that principle. Readability must therefore not be defined as the expenditure of the least effort (despite Hirsch 1977), but rather as the appropriate proportion between required effort and resulting insights.10
12. The situation is similar in the research on and the teachin of writing. Older methods have dwelt heavily on surface mechanics, such as punctuation, subject-verb agreement, or disordered syntax. Often, the mere suppressing of errors in surface mechanics was equated with writing well. Later, scholars (like Christensen 1967) began to study the formal arrangement of extended discourse, and found various typical patterns. But “the reasons for the effectiveness of different patterns, the ways in which their parts interact, the most useful techniques of deciding upon particular sequences of steps in composing ... have been dealt with slightly, hesitantly, or not at all” (Larson 1976: 71). A procedural investigation of the decision-making processes would be helpful in offsetting this deficit.11 The ways that a writer can build and use a reasonable model of the intended reader audience should also be presented and explored. Unlike spoken language, writing cannot rely on immediate feedback and must therefore be far more closely planned and critically evaluated (cf. Rubin 1978a). The subsidiary factors of voice quality, intonation, facial expressions, and gestures must be compensated with purely textual means of creating focus and interest.
13. Literary studies have been applying linguistic methods of inquiry for many years (see II.11). The methods have corresponded to the contemporary trends in linguistics proper. The description of structures was carried out in early studies such as those of the “Russian Formalists” (e.g. Eichenbaum, Jakobson, Jakubinskij, Propp, Šklovskij, Tomaševskij, Tynjanov, Vinogradov), and the “Prague Structuralists” (e.g. Havránek, Mathesius, Mukařovský, Trnka).12 Description focused on the elements and configurations which set literary or poetic language apart from everyday language and thus remove it from “automatic” processing. This “de-automatization” (Mukařovský 1964) could be achieved both via “deviations” such as rare neologisms or displaced syntax, and via the imposition of detailed “equivalences” which everyday language would not manifest.13 In either case, the structures involved were described from an essentially static viewpoint.
14. During the ascendancy of transformational grammar, proposals were advanced for a “generative poetics”: a special grammar designed to “generate” literary structures via modified rules.14 However, it gradually became evident that no such grammar could be set up for any large set of texts. The diversity of literature and poetry would lead to an explosion of special rules, some of which, in the worst case, would be required for one single instance. The rules would also generate many undesirable structures not found in any samples. Indeed, the explosion of the grammar would eventually allow the generating of every conceivable structure, so that nothing would have been explained at all.15
15. Neither the descriptive nor the transformational approach made any concerted attempt to deal with the alternativity of textual worlds which we consider a distinctive trait of literature and poetry (cf. IX. 8f). Consequently, the epistemological and social functions of literary discourse were neglected or treated only marginally. The poetic text was thought to revolve around itself, drawing all of the receivers’ attention to the formatting of the message and hence freeing them from any practical consequences of communicative interaction.
16. Deviations for their own sake or for the sake of tinkering with language would hardly suffice to account for the prestigious status of literary and poetic texts within the overall context of social discourse. The history of literature shows that the value assigned to a literary text over the years is not a direct outcome of its degree of deviation; otherwise, we should all rate Gertrude Stein over Ernest Hemingway. Evaluation rather reflects the enriching nature of the insights provided in downgrading unexpected occurrences by finding their communicative motivations (cf. VII.11ff) and upgrading expected occurrences by noting their special significance. Discrepancies and discontinuities in literary texts are most effective if they are matched to discrepancies and discontinuities in the socially established model of the “real world” (cf. IV.19; VII.40; IX.8). For example, the enduring appeal of Lewis Carroll’s Alice books arises from the entertaining way in which the nonsensical occurrences in the text-world point up the arbitrary, often foolish conventions of Victorian society and its treatment of children.
17. Experimental classes conducted by R. de Beaugrande at the University of Florida have demonstrated that this outlook is quite useful in teaching literature to a wide audience of non-specialized receivers. Students rapidly become skilled at discovering the motivations for all sorts of non-ordinary occurrences in poetry. These motivations may not have been present in the conscious control of the text producer. Often, we have no reliable access to the text producer’s real intentions other than through the evidence of the text itself. Indeed, the best of intentions would not be relevant if the text could not be utilized by its contemporaries without detailed personal knowledge from other sources.16 There does seem to be a correlation between common intuitive value judgements, literary texts, and the interestingness of motivations and insights uncovered in the fashion described above.
18. This approach admittedly exceeds the traditional scope of linguistics. Literary studies could profit greatly from a general, interdisciplinary science of texts. Siegfried J. Schmidt (1979, 1981) has provided a theoretical framework for literary studies in the broader context of social action and interaction. The investigation of literary texts would be expanded to the investigation of the use of literary texts (cf. Wienold 1972): literary criticism would become an object of inquiry as well as a means. Even when critics cannot agree on the motivation for certain occurrences in a given text, critical reactions still document the presence and interestingness of the occurrences themselves.17 Criticism is basically an activity of downgrading (finding motivations that integrate improbable occurrences) and upgrading (finding more specialized motivations for everyday occurrences): the more rewarding the text, the more numerous and fulfilling will be the spread of upgradings and downgradings. In Shakespeare’s texts, for instance, there are striking, many-sided motivators for the selection and arrangement of language options.18 One critic’s downgradings would not be “correct” or “incorrect”, but rather more or less probable, convincing, and enriching.
19. A science of texts can also contribute to translation studies.19 Translating entails above all the actualization of language, and the traditional linguistic preoccupation with virtual, self-contained systems impeded the development of translation theory.20 This point became dramatically clear when virtual systems were used as the sole basis for machine translation: a computer working only with a grammar and lexicon (both virtual systems) was found unable to operate reliably, because it could not evaluate context. A computer equipped with prior knowledge of the world fares much better, being able to decide what concepts and relations will be preferentially combined in text-worlds.21 A preference model for all language operations would work better still, e.g. with preferences for mapping text-worlds onto the surface texts; for realizing intentions and plans via discourse actions; for relating texts to situations of occurrence; and so on. The high costs of programming all these preferences into a computer would be offset in the long run by more intelligent, satisfactory translating.
20. Human translating has been the object of a longstanding controversy over “literal” versus “free” approaches. This discussion reflects the inaccurate views that there can be an equivalence of language elements independently of their setting of occurrence; and that such equivalence is somehow relevant to actual usage. The “literal” translator decomposes the text into single elements (or small groups of elements) and replaces each with a corresponding element (or group) in the goal language. The “free” translator judges the function of the whole text in discourse and searches for elements that could fulfil that function in a goal-language situation. The success or failure of either approach is doubtful: an unduly “literal” translation may be awkward or even unintelligible, while an unduly “free” one may cause the original text to disintegrate and disappear altogether.
21. The equivalence of a translation with its original can only be an equivalence in the experience of the participants.22 The major source of non-equivalence arises when the translator incorporates his or her own experience into the text itself, leaving the receivers with little to do. To counteract this tendency, translators must strive to convey the same kind of experience with the same kind of language material, and to expand, reduce, or modify textual components only as far as necessary to minimize a divergence of experience. Whether or not the elements in the goal language text occupy the same positions in their virtual systems as do the elements of the original text in theirs, is a secondary matter, often leading to irresolvable and unnecessary conflicts.
22. Literary translating illustrates these considerations quite forcefully. As we have suggested before, literary and poetic texts make use of alternative organizations of the world or, of discourse about the world in order to elicit special processing activities from the receivers.23 If a literary or poetic translator interferes with those organizations, equivalence of experience is rendered impossible. All too often, translators will incorporate into the text their own processing activities: solving the problems, reducing polyvalence, explaining away any discrepancies or discontinuities, and so forth. Soon, the receivers of the translation find their mental tasks pre-empted. Translators should instead analyse both the text and the range of plausible receiver reactions, in order to preserve as much of that range as possible. This task would obviously be assisted by a science of texts in which language elements and structures are viewed in terms of processes and operations.
23. Contrastive linguistics, concerned with the differences between languages,24 should be expanded to a confrontation of textual strategies. The contrasting of virtual systems alone, carried to extremes by John Catford (1964) for instance, fails to show how different languages can be used for the same or similar purposes in human interaction. Indeed, as Georges Mounin (1963) pointed out, a preoccupation with the divergencies among virtual systems, especially grammar/syntax and lexicon, would lead one to suppose that translating should be impossible in both theory and practice. The “comparative stylistics” developed by Vinay and Darbelnet (1958), on the other hand, illustrates correspondences and divergences among cultural patterns of actual usage. Although their criteria are often impressionistic, Vinay and Darbelnet capture some important regularities that could be empirically elaborated by psychological and sociological research.
24. Foreign-language teaching is at present in a precarious condition. All too often, the failure of most learners to acquire the new language adequately is accepted as the normal state of affairs. A radically behaviouristic approach known as the “audio-lingual” or “direct” method, in which language use is considered a simplistic “stimulus-response” mechanism has survived in America despite the downfall of behaviouristic learning theories in psychology proper (cf. VI.12) and despite the discrediting of this approach in Great Britain and Europe, where communicative language methods are preferred (cf. Wienold 1973; Wilkins 1976). Apparently, the ability to communicate in a language is equated with the ability to form grammatical paradigms and syntactic patterns with the help of unsystematically compiled vocabulary lists. The learners are given no thorough exposure to the actualization strategies without which these virtual systems of grammar/syntax and lexicon are of little practical value: how to relate texts to situations or to plans and goals. Learners are forced to act as if grammatical perfection were the highest priority for saying anything (such is at least the usual standard for evaluation and testing),24 so that they easily become tongue-tied and helpless. A science of texts could help to set new priorities and to select those rules, procedures, and domains which are sufficient for textual communication on a limited scale (cf. Wikberg 1978).
25. The emerging super-discipline of semiotics, the study of signs, still lacks a general, unified theory. There is a great diversity among types of signs: written words, graphic images, musical notes, paintings, hand signals, and so forth. The unity of signs (and thus of semiotics) lies in the systemic nature of their occurrence in the context of human activities. In the broadest sense, any meaningful sign configuration is a text, and must possess textuality. Each individual sign occurs in an actual system that regulates and determines its function and sense. A science of linguistic texts might well be expanded and generalized to deal with semiotic texts of all sorts. Films, art works, billboards, concerts, political rallies, games—all these events (and many more) are composed of cohesive and coherent elements with relevance to the participants’ attitudes and goals within the situation. Presumably, it is a basic precondition of acquiring, storing, and using signs that they must contribute to the textuality of their respective settings of occurrence.
26. Computer science is currently in a state of rapid evolution. Terry Winograd (1979) discusses the rising demand for “higher-level” programming concerned not with detailed numerical operations, but with “manipulating complex systems and components”. As long as computers can only carry out well-defined sequences of steps on precisely preformatted data, programmers will have to keep modifying or replacing expensive software capable of only a few specific tasks. An intelligent computer would be programmed to manage a wide range of tasks without severe restrictions upon the formatting of data (cf. Lenat 1977; Walker (ed.) 1978; Simon 1979; see also discussion in X.5). For example, computers should be able to operate from an “informal” description of a task domain (Goldman, Balzer & Wile 1977). This kind of program will require “world views” (Winograd 1979: 395), i.e., knowledge of how real-world events and situations are organized, in order to understand its tasks and act without incessant inspection and guidance.
27. Research toward the development of such “intelligent” computer systems has important implications for a science of texts. We have already availed ourselves in this volume of many notions and proposals for “artificial intelligence” in computers.25 These contributions are intended to improve the interactions of humans with machines, particularly where the abilities of the two groups complement each other. Computers offer rapid computation and expensive storage, while humans have vast-storage and rather slow computational abilities (Loftus & Loftus 1976: 128). Computers can recall any desired amount of material without loss or error over long periods of time, while most humans cannot. Humans can recognize subtle analogies and correlations which still evade the computer (Collins & Quillian 1972). Whereas no absolute improvements of human memory capacity and computational speed are yet in sight, computer abilities have been enormously expanded in the past ten years. Humans apparently cannot become more machine-like, but machines can become more human.
28. On the other hand, artificial intelligence can also be construed as a source of models for human processes. In the new field of cognitive science (cf. X.3 ff ), theories about the mental activities of humans are frequently tested by building computer models. Researchers agree that presently operating models are simpler than their corresponding human processes by several degrees of magnitude (cf. III.35), but those models already have attained a complexity far beyond the scope of traditional theories in linguistics and psychology. Only the computer allows us to test immediately whether a mathematical or procedural theory of cognition or communication actually operates in real time; we can and must specify exact details that may remain hidden in human experiments. In short, computers can lead us from understanding data toward the broader domain of understanding understanding.26
29. On this optimistic note, we shall conclude our survey of text linguistics. We hope to have outlined the basic issues in a useful and not overly technical manner. Although those issues are far from resolved, researchers are gradually acquiring important insights into the nature of the questions worth investigating. The nature of texts as objects of inquiry clearly calls for a re-evaluation of traditional linguistic methodology. By defining texts as actual communicative occurrences, we are obliged to consider all the factors of control and processing in realistic settings. Perhaps this expansion of our domain will not heighten the complexity of research and application as much as one might suppose. The fact that humans can and do communicate successfully in a staggering range of settings indicates that there must be a limited set of powerful, regular strategies at work, some of which we suggested in X.4. In its attempts to isolate single systems (phonology, morphology, syntax, etc.) and to keep language distinct from everything else, linguistic research may have remained on a superficial plane that increased complexity of study rather than reducing it. On a more powerful plane, a simpler and more unified account of human language may yet be forthcoming.
1 Bock (1979) suggests that some parallels may exist between text processing and the language tasks assigned in traditional psychological experiments, e.g. the learning of word-lists. A study by Mary Kircher (cited in Meyer 1977: 308), however, reports the contrary.
2 We appeal to these notions repeatedly in the present volume; see the Index of Terms for listings of the passages involved. And see Beaugrande (1980a) for further details.
3 Peter Hartman (personal communication to RdB) observes that linguistic analysis tends naturally to proliferate ambiguities that play no role in real communication; cf. note 7 to Chapter III.
4 Groeben (1978) argues that linguistic and psychological tests can be deployed to improve didactic texts for scientific instruction.
5 Cf. Blumer (ed.) (1969); Goffman (1974).
6 Cf. Gumperz & Hymes (eds.) (1972); Cicourel et al. (1974).
7 Cf. Frake (1972); Colby (1973a, b); Salmond (1974); Leodolter (1975); Wodak (1980).
8 Cf. Dressler & Stark (1976); Engel (1977); Labov & Fanshel (1977); Wodak-Leodolter (1979).
9 Cf. Kintsch (1977b). In a comparative study with fourth-graders and tenth-graders, Beaugrande & Miller (1980) found that the different stores of prior knowledge caused consistent variations in the interaction of a schema with prior cognitive dispositions. On schemas, cf. V.16; note 22 to Chapter IX. On modelling reading, cf. Beaugrande (1981a).
10 In more general terms: humans enjoy solving difficult problems if there are correspondingly intense rewards. On the preference for problematic knowledge in texts, see note 8 to Chapter IX.
11 cf. 11.4; III.20-28; IV.20; VI.10-20; VIII.13-27. A similarly conceived model has been proposed by Flower & Hayes (1979) (cf. also Bruce, Collns, Rubin & Gentner 1978).
12 Some papers of the Russian Formalists are surveyed in Erlich (1955); Matejka & Pomorska (eds.) (1971); Hansen-Löve (1978); some from the Prague Structuralists are in Garvin (ed.) (1964).
13 On deviation, cf. Mukařovský (1964); Levin (1963, 1965). On equivalence, cf. Levin (1962); Jakobson & Jones (1970); on some problems inherent in these and related approaches, cf. Werth (1976); Beaugrande (1978b, d, 1979c).
14 The major force in this movement was the work of Teun van Dijk (1972a), but some earlier short works were also influential (e.g. Bierwisch 1965b; Žolkovskij & Ščeglov 1967; Hendricks 1969; Thorne 1969; Levin 1971).
15 There would also be combinatorial explosion if any text producer attempted to apply such a grammar (cf. III.5, 32).
16 The hopes of explaining literature away by analysing the personal biographies of authors is a special case of downgrading, namely: assigning the motivations for special views of the world or of language about the world to external experiences (cf. X.18). But the causality of these experiences is at best doubtful, and not necessarily relevant.
17 See discussion in Riffaterre (1959: 162).
18 Cf. Jakobson & Jones (1970); Beaugrande (1979c).
19 Cf. Dressler (1970, 1972b, 1974b); Beaugrande (1978a, 1980e).
20 This problem was already clear in the critique from Mounin (1963); cf. X.23.
21 This approach has been advocated especially in the work of Yorick Wilks (1972, 1979); the translation component of the Yale group (cf. Goldman 1975; Schank & Abelson 1977; Cuihngford 1978) works on comparable principles in its application of knowledge about events and actions to the understanding process.
22 Beaugrande (1978a) undertakes to consider some implications of this thesis for literary translating in terms of research on reader phonomenology, e.g. the preservation of polyvalence. A treatment in terms of network coherence can be found in Beaugrande (1980e).
23 Cf. VII.29-42; IX. 8-9; X. 13-18.
24 Cf. Nickel (ed.) (1971, 1972). At present, contrastive linguistics is in a state of some confusion after the downfall of transformational grammar as the accepted “paradigm”, since contrasts can only be made in terms of some linguistic theory or model (cf. Coseriu 1972).
24a Ulijn (1980) found that syntactic problems were in fact not as important barriers to comprehension as were semantic, at least in reading a second language.
25 The notions of “access”, “control centre”, “default”, “frame”, “goal”, “hold stack”, “management”, “monitoring”, “network”, “operator”, “problem-solving”, “search”, and “space”, for example, are all borrowed from computer science in general and artificial intelligence in particular.
26 The shift away from “facts” toward the procedures for acquiring or demonstrating facts has finally begun in the sciences at large (cf. Stegmüller 1969, 1976; Kuhn 1970; Lakatos 1976; Spinner 1977; Feyerabend 1978). This trend, so long overdue, has proven enormously productive in opening the foundations of sciences to critical discussion at a time when a point of diminishing returns has become noticeable in many fields. For an application to linguistic theory, see Finke (1979); Beaugrande (1981b). On a more detailed plane, the same trend is emerging in education (cf. Collins, Warnock, Aiello & Miller 1975; Collins 1977a; Brown, Collins & Harris 1978; Papert 1980).
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