Você sabia que o português, o holandês e o persa, apesar de serem muito diferentes, se originaram todos em um único idioma que era falado há muitos anos?
Existe uma ciência que estuda fatos como esse – e muitos outros! Ela se chama linguística e é um campo de estudo desconhecido para muitas pessoas. Neste texto, vamos aprender o que é essa ciência e o que ela faz.

O que é?

Simplesmente, a linguística é o estudo científico da linguagem. Isso quer dizer que ela estuda tudo que se relacione com a língua: os seus sons, a sua estrutura, a sua relação com a sociedade, com o nosso cérebro… e praticamente o que mais você conseguir pensar!

 

De onde ela vem?

Várias sociedades têm estudado a linguagem há muito tempo. Por exemplo, há mais de 2000 anos, os chineses já estudavam a fonética, a ortografia e a lexicografia (elaboração de dicionários).

Além disso, na Índia, há pelo menos 2500 anos, já havia estudos avançados sobre a fonética e a gramática. A tradição linguística desse país influenciou muito a linguística ocidental.

Outra sociedade que estudou muito a linguagem foi a grega. Os gregos se preocupavam com a análise de proposições lógicas, e isso os motivou a fazer profundos estudos sobre a estrutura da língua. [1]

Entretanto, o linguista suíço Ferdinand de Saussure (1857 – 1913) deu um novo rumo à disciplina e iniciou a linguística ocidental que temos hoje em dia. Ele não “inventou” a linguística: ele apenas definiu seu o objeto de estudos [2]. Além disso, depois de Saussure, muitos outros estudiosos deram novas caras à disciplina e contribuíram com diferentes perspectivas e teorias sobre a linguagem.

 

Linguística e gramática normativa

É provável que você, quando ouve a palavra linguística, pense “Linguística é aquela gramática que eu aprendi na escola!” Bem, não é exatamente assim. A gramática que aprendemos na escola é o que se chama de gramática normativa ou prescritiva. Como o nome já diz, ela define regras que indicam como as pessoas deveriam falar a língua. Elas baseiam essas regras em moldes da língua como cânones da literatura, por exemplo. [3]

Já a linguística, em vez de prescritiva, tende a ser descritiva. Ou seja, ela não procura definir padrões de “certo e errado” e dizer que alguma forma de falar seja errada. Ela apenas analisa e descreve, dentre outras coisas, o jeito como as pessoas realmente falam no seu dia-a-dia. [4]

 

Diferentes áreas da linguística

Como dissemos no início do texto, a linguística engloba muitos campos de estudo. Aqui estão alguns e o que eles estudam:

Diagrama apresentando alguns dos grandes campos de estudo dentro da linguística.
Diagrama apresentando alguns dos grandes campos de estudo dentro da linguística.

Todas essas áreas são interligadas e interdependentes. Além disso, dentro de cada uma, há várias teorias e abordagens diferentes! E, claro, há muitas outras áreas que não foram citadas aqui e que também são muito importantes para a ciência.

 

Concluindo

A linguística é uma ciência ampla e é de grande interesse para profissionais e cientistas de várias áreas. Apesar disso, ela ainda não é conhecida por muitas pessoas. Esperamos que este texto tenha lhe ajudado a elucidar um pouco sobre o que é esse fascinante campo de estudo.

Fique de olho no site: em breve, teremos mais matérias sobre as diferentes áreas da linguística!

Por Thomaz Offrede

tom.offrede@gmail.com

Referências
[1] Weedwood, B. (2002). História concisa da linguística. (Trad. M. Bagno). São Paulo: Parábola Editorial.
[2] Pietroforte, A. V. (2006). A língua como objeto da Linguística. In Fiorin, J. L. (Org.) Introdução à linguística, volume I. (5ª ed.) São Paulo: Contexto.
[3] Bechara, E. (2014). Para quem se faz uma gramática? In Neves, M. H. M., & Casseb-Galvão, V. C. (Orgs.) Gramáticas contemporâneas do Português. São Paulo: Parábola Editorial.
[4] Bagno, M. (2006). Nada na língua é por acaso: ciência e senso comum na educação em língua materna. Presença Pedagógica.
[5] Payne, T. E. (2006). Exploring Language Structure: A Student’s Guide. New York: Cambridge University Press.
[6] Radford, A., Atkinson, M., Britain, D., Clahsen, H., & Spencer, A. (2009). Linguistics: An Introduction (2nd ed.). New York: Cambridge University Press.

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