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Thomas Francis Broden
Purdue University (West Lafayette, IN 47907-2040)
An Intellectual Biography of Language Theorist A. J. Greimas (1917-1992)

This intellectual biography will be the first to examine critically the entire span of French-language scholar A. J. Greimas’s (1917-92) methods for studying language, culture, narrative, and visual images. It identifies three stages in the unfolding of his ideas and devotes special attention to the third, "Paris semiotics." The theories form integral components of linguistic and textual analysis taught and practiced throughout the Romance-language world. The study provides a window onto critical transformations in textual studies and indeed the human sciences over the last century. Greimas collaborated closely with some of the best-known intellectuals of his day, including Lévi-Strauss, Barthes, de Certeau, Ricoeur, and Eco. By attracting attention to this central but neglected figure, and by drawing comparisons with English-language research, the monograph revises our postwar history of ideas in France and reframes the relations between English- and Romance-language traditions.

Project fields:
French Literature

Fellowships for University Teachers

Research Programs

$50,400 (approved)
$50,400 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2013 – 5/31/2014