9. Linguistics and Literature

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Introduction to Theory of Literature (ENGL 300)

In this lecture on the work of Roman Jakobson, Professor Paul Fry continues his discussion of synchrony and diachrony. The relationships among formalism, semiotics, and linguistics are explored. Claude Levi-Strauss’s structural interpretation of the Oedipus myth is discussed in some detail. In order to differentiate Jakobson’s poetic functions, Professor Fry analyzes the sentence “It is raining” from six perspectives. Significant attention is paid to the use of diagrams in literary linguistic theory.

00:00 – Chapter 1. Synchrony and Diachrony
06:47 – Chapter 2. The Emergence of Structuralism
11:24 – Chapter 3. The Relationship Between Formalism and Semiotics
17:33 – Chapter 4. Levi-Strauss and the Meaning of the Oedipus Myth
26:19 – Chapter 5. The Poetic Function
32:49 – Chapter 6. Jacobson’s Six Functions
43:53 – Chapter 7. Metalanguage and Poetic Function

Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website: http://open.yale.edu/courses

This course was recorded in Spring 2009.