ERIC Number: ED324960
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
New Ways of Meaning: A Challenge to Applied Linguistics.
Halliday, M. A. K.
Language policy and planning has become a major concern of applied linguistics. Most language planning is institutional and not systemic, planning not the forms of the language but the relationship between the language and the individuals who use it. Institutional language planning, policy formation, provides the context for systemic language planning, whose objective is to expand language's potential for meaning. Language does not reflect reality, rather it actively creates reality. The role of grammar in this system is complex; it is the meaning-making potential of language. While any language can create new terms, its semantic base changes very slowly, resulting from material changes in the culture. Major upheavals in human history have been critical in semohistory. A significant component in these upheavals is a change in ways of meaning. Changing language can change the existing order. When planning language, applied linguists are not forging an ideologically neutral instrument for carrying out policy; they are creating an active force in shaping people's consciousness. A significant change in the human condition is the depletion of resources. Language planning can replace war discourse with peace discourse, the discourse of borrowing with that of saving, and the discourse of building with that of repair. (MSE)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the World Congress of Applied Linguistics sponsored by the International Association of Applied Linguistics (9th, Thessaloniki, Greece, April 15-21, 1990).