Eugenio Coseriu (1921-2002)

The linguist Eugenio Coseriu was born in 1921 in Mihăileni, a small Romanian town that today lies in the Republic of Moldova. After his studies in Romania and Italy, he became Professor of General and Indo-European Linguistics at the University of Montevideo (Uruguay). In the Fifties, he developed the core foundations of his theory of language, which at first consisted of the development and completion of structural linguistics. His most important treatises of this period critically deal with Ferdinand de Saussure and modify or rather complete the latter's theory of speech, referring among others to Wilhelm von Humboldt, Hegel and Aristotle. Some of Coseriu's publications of the Fifties unfold issues that go beyond structural consideration of language. For example in Determinación y entorno (1955-56), a linguistic theory of text is outlined for the first time. In 1961, Coseriu came to Germany, at first to Bonn and Frankfurt/Main, then as of 1963 to the University of Tübingen as professor for Romance Linguistics. In the Seventies, Coseriu's Tübingen School became the most influential in Romance studies, with great impact even beyond Romance studies, especially in the realm of general linguistics and philosophy of language, but also in other disciplines, such as Germanic or Slavic linguistics.
Eugenio Coseriu died on September 7th 2002 in Tübingen.


Eugenio Coseriu in 1986 at the edge of Neckar river in Tübingen

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