Publication details [#54337]

Paveau, Marie-Anne. 2011. Do non-linguists practice linguistics?: An anti-eliminative approach to folk theories. AILA Review 24 : 40–54.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher
John Benjamins
Journal DOI


This contribution discusses two issues: (a) it provides a definition and an analysis of the term “non-linguist“, which is conceptualized as a non-discrete category on a continuum and as an activity rather than as a permanent status, and (b) it discusses the general value of folk linguistic theories, which should not, despite their potential imperfections, be a priori excluded from but rather integrated into the scientific data of linguistics. The article will also present a provisional typology of folk linguistic positions based on recent empirical research on folk linguistics conducted by the author. Finally, a plea is made for a new description of the object of linguistics, incorporating the different varieties and degrees of linguistic knowledge ranging from scientific to folk conceptions.