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Colóquio do LEPSI IP/FE-USP
Psicanálise, infância e educação

On-line ISBN 978-85-60944-06-4


LIER-DEVITTO, Maria Francisca. Linguagem-criança e instituições.. In: COLOQUIO DO LEPSI IP/FE-USP, 5., 2004, São Paulo. Proceedings online... Available from: <http://www.proceedings.scielo.br/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=MSC0000000032004000100002&lng=en&nrm=abn>. Acess on: 24 May. 2024.

This paper discusses the well-known unquestioned assumption that language is a social institution. It is true that Saussure, in defining the object of linguistics, stated that it should be conceived of as "a social institution" (1916: 17). It is argued and discussed here that such a statement is disputable - it can be reinterpreted taking into account the very argumentative tissue of the author's Cours de Linguistique Générale. Indeed, Saussure's object of linguistics is strictly theoretical and, as such, it is neither natural, nor social/cultural, in epistemological terms. This paper stresses that la langue is a single order in itself and that it was "this theoretical novelty" that paved the way for Lacan to enunciate, later on, that language determines subjectivity. That being the case, one could say that Saussure has opened the possibility to approach the question of the child's relation to language, of her/his constitution as a subject speaker (be it admitted as successful or not).

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