The major changes that have shaped the world, society, and human knowledge over the last few decades have led to a re-thinking of the role that languages have played in human communication and communities' social reality. But even this new outlook once again confirms the utterly central nature of the relationship between language and society, or, rather, between language, society, and human beings' natural character. This basic relationship and the ensuing network of issues are the main focus of this book written by the foremost Italian linguist, Tullio De Mauro. This text addresses topics that go well beyond linguistics and also reflects on history, culture, and especially politics. The reader will find plenty of food for thought, stretching from Aristotle to Wittgenstein, from Borges to Einstein, from national constitutions to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Tullio De Mauro is a renowned scholar of linguistics who has authored many books translated into several languages.