Noam Chomsky, a prominent American philosopher, an expert linguist, a brilliant cognitive scientist, a vibrant political activist, an outstanding author, and an affectionate, analyzing and admirable lecturer of these times. Noam Chomsky was born to a respectable and well-educated family of a renowned scholar, William Chomsky, on December 7 1928, in Philadelphia. However, his mother, Elsie Chomsky was from Belarus. He finished his early learning at the Oak Lane Country Day School and than went to the Central High School. He was one of the brightest and brilliantly promised students of the school.
His literary activities started from the school, he was a born writer with god-gifted skills and composed his first piece of writing at the age of ten. This remarkable article was related to the treats caused by the spread of fascism, and foregrounded the fall of Barcelona in Spanish Civil War. With time, his interests grew stronger in linguistics and philosophy. He pursued his higher studies at the grand University of Pennsylvania. His subjects there were linguistics, mathematics and the philosophy. He worked on Harris’ political views, these views helped Chomsky to build and shape up his conceptions.
Later on, he reformed Harris’ political views as well. He received his B. A in the year 1949. By the time his interests and concerns in philosophy and linguistics strengthened that much that, he received his M. A in the same subject from the same university in the year 1951. In the year 1955, he achieved his PhD from the same university; however, most of the research-work during his PhD program was done at Harvard University as Harvard Junior Fellow from 1951 to the year 1955. Besides his interest and the desire for quenching his thrust from the seas of linguistic and philosophy, he also contributed in medicine research work.
Just after he received his PhD, he joined Massachusetts Institute Of technology, and was appointed as the professor in the Modern languages and Linguistics. Now he is holding the Ferrari P. Ward Chair of Modern Language and Linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). (Fiona Cowie, 1999) NOAM CHOMSKY AS AN AUTHOR: – Noam Chomsky is blessed with the art of writing, a magician with words, and a writer with the legendary intellect. Noam Chomsky contributed a far greater part of his life in writing books, scribbling articles and conducting interesting researches on unique and singular issues of the world.
He is a person with sensitive and caring heart, a child of Depression as he has seen many bad things happening to innocent people around him, he writes direct from the heart. Some of his earliest but occupying books include Profit over People, Common Good – Chomsky, Washington Connection and The Third World Fascism. In these books, he highlighted the fact that United States is the only known country in the entire world condemned by the World Court for international terrorism. In addition to this, he insists on the fact that United States is using the unlawful force for all political activities round the globe in the name of world terrorism.
The Responsibility of Intellectuals is another masterpiece by Chomsky, and the book from the all time hits, American Power and the New Mandarins, followed this famous article. The book is comprised of numerous essays that throw light on many facts left undisclosed by US policies. Manufacturing Consent, Propaganda and the Public Mind, The Prosperous Few, the Restless, Many Secrets Lies, Democracy and What Uncle Sam Really Wants are also some of the best and well-written articles by Noam Chomsky.
Most of these articles insist and highlight issues of public and working class of the United States as well as around the world. All of his written-work, he publicized the fact how advertising is tax deductible and how we should react over such things and solve such problems in order to have a sound nation. In addition to these achievements, with he also depicted and described several other social and humanitarian issues that are being faced by the working class as well. He threw light on all the events that are happening in the United States as well as in other countries around the world.
He discussed the issues being faced by a common man, his struggle to live a normal life, and how he fails to achieve his supposed goals, and what factors are involved in resisting and hindering the life of a common person. After the Cataclysm, Rogue States, 9-11, Year 501, Deterring Democracy, Media Control and Necessary Illusions are some of the best writings by him. In all these wonderful books and amazing articles, he exposed many facts that were never disclosed and exhibited to public and the issues that should have been highlighted.
One significant example is from Media Control he brought out the fact that media is controlled by big mechanism and it shows and exhibits what exactly does the people behind it want and the common person believes media as if it is the only source of truth and verity accessible to him. As an author, Chomsky tried to cover all related issues regarding media. He questioned the readers that do we still want to live in a society where others overtake our rights or we want to live in a free society.
According to him “this society is still the same as the previous one where screaming patriotic slogans are heard, where there is a fear of master to whom we all should obey, and where this terrified working class cant take any decisions of their lives by themselves” (Alison Edgley, 2000). As an author, all of his written-works are praised and encouraged by different literary circles. His ramblings also include books like Democracy, the Pentagon System, The Culture and the fear, Victories and several others as well. NOAM CHOMSKY AS A PHILOSOPHER: – The knacks of Chomsky as a philosopher, just add to his overall greatness.
Noam Chomsky is a well-known and thought provoking philosopher as well. He describes and conceives the word philosophy as the procedure of learning of nature and existence, knowledge, truth, beauty, justice, validity, mind, as well as the medium of communication between them. He is very thoughtful and attentive towards common person; his tender heart never allows him to get rid of the humanitarian approach in anything he does. He is one of the legendry of rationalist philosophers, a positivist, and a person on the face of the earth who thinks that enough of the bad thing has happened to humankind and now only the good can happen.
He has written a lot for humankind, for common person, for people who wants to live a normal life but they just cannot accomplish this dream. His brainy, brilliant and bright encompasses many of his writings and ramblings. Out of these assets The Basis of Language: The Human Mind/Brain Rule system, Modular Approaches to the Study of Mind, Principles & Parameters, as well as Minimalist Ideas Ascribing Knowledge of Language are some of his most prominent and popular work around the globe. (South End Press Collective, 1998) NOAM CHOMSKY’S CONTRIBUTIONS TO LINGUISTICS: –
Chomsky’s interests in linguistics flourished since he was pursuing his PhD. In the decade of 1950s 50s, Chomsky was already started Formulating his theory of generative grammar, the theory which has rendered many revisions and has a profound influence and sound impression on the art of linguistics. Within linguistics, he has been regarded as the “hero of Homeric proportions,” belonging strongly and solidly in the pantheon of United States’ beautiful minds, with all the amazing powers and pleasing qualities thereof. He is regarded as a marvelously smart linguist.
The capabilities and potentials of his intellect with respect to speed, scope, and synthetic abilities are legendary. He is a born leader, capable to mobilize support, furious and uncompromising concerns, for perspectives he puts forth, assumes or follows. He seems to shape and build up the art of linguistic with absolute and veer force of his own free will. In the year 1955, Noam Chomsky presented his first theory about linguistic that was declared as the origin of Syntactic Structures, this masterpiece is known as Logical Structure of Linguistic Theory.
This theory focuses on the challenges of structural linguistics as well as highlights point’s regarding transformational grammar. Besides this, he also concentrated on syntax of words that he also characterized by forming a formal grammar. He introduced a particular grammar, known as context-free grammar that was extended by the theory using transformational rules, and is still in use. Chomsky also presented another theory in this field in 1979, which was declared as P&P (The Principles, and Parameters approach). This theory was later published by him as a collection and was known as LGB (Lectures on Government and Binding).
In all of his research as a linguist, he figures out significant points regarding universal grammar as all the predefined rules in grammar are initiated and later fixed, and can only be differentiated by characterizing parameters that will helps in understanding the rules of all the grammars. Furthermore, he also highlighted the point that any one who desires to have a deep and sound learning of any language should focus just on lexical items that are composed of words, grammatical morphemes, and idioms. He is still exploring multiple aspects of linguistics.
In 1995, he formed the Minimalist Program, which was fundamentally based on exploring and highlighting the principles and parameters of grammar. His contributions in this field are unforgettable; his work, a masterpiece. All of his theories are still followed by the linguist circles around the world. His ideas have instilled a strong influence on researchers, investigating the acquisition of language in children. He developed The Sound Pattern of English in the year 1968, in which he discussed some significant theories like auto segmental phonology, lexical phonology and optimality theory.
(John Lechte, 1994) NOAM CHOMSKY AS A POLITICAL DISSIDENT: – Chomsky has a remarkable interest and major concern with the world politics as well. It is often said the politics impressed him towards the art of linguistics. His potentials and altruistic capabilities towards world peace, socialism, and political ideologies are under influence of the “Radical Jewish Community in New York”. Since 1965 and with the US attack on Vietnam, Chomsky emerged as the prominent political dissident in America.
He is now one of the most popular critics of US domestic and foreign policies and strategies. His opinions and ideas on politics are now worldly cited. He is a liberalist, and declares himself as a disciple of libertarian socialism. He regards it as “the proper and natural extension of classical liberalism into the era of advanced industrial society. ” (Edward S. Herman, 1999) His role as one of the leading and contributing critic of the US policies made him to publish a book of essays known as, American Power and the New Mandarins.
This book is regarded as one of the most significant and substantive arguments against the Vietnam War. (Edward S. Herman, 1999) CONCLUSION: Noam Chomsky is a versatile personality, with different shades of his personality adding to his greatness, and each shade comprising of many other unique, enchanting and beautiful aspects. Chomsky is widely honored in the academic and scientific circles and is a prominent and renowned figure. Due to his outstanding work and striking contributions in the field of linguistics, he is regarded as the Father of Modern Linguistics.
Chomsky has become a prominent personality since 1960, and has emerged as staggeringly smart political dissident, an expert anarchist and a libertarian socialist intellectual. His researches and work are the legendry masterpiece and his contributions as a sensitive human, philosopher, an expert linguist, a brilliant cognitive scientist, a vibrant political activist, an outstanding author, and an affectionate, analyzing and admirable lecturer are unforgettable. (Keith Windschuttle, 2003) REFERENCES:
• Alison Edgley (2000), The Social and Political Thought of Noam Chomsky. Publisher: Routledge. Place of Publication: London. (This book gives us the Introduction of Chomsky as a critic or as a theorist? This book also mentions his Political theory, State theory, his liguitics and philosophical views and about his political views) • Edward S. Herman (1999), The Washington Connection and Third World Fascism. Publisher: South End Press. Place of Publication: Boston. (This book deal the relations between the United States and the Third World.
It has a twin focus: on information and on thinking). • Fiona Cowie (1999), What’s Within? : Nativism Reconsidered. Publisher: Oxford University Press. Place of Publication: New York. (This Book shows how unique the claims are by Chomsky, explaining their rational associations, and bearing in mind discrete foundation for each will facilitate a better understanding and appraise the Chomskyan place and its competitors. ) • John Lechte (1994), Fifty Key Contemporary Thinkers: From Structuralism to Postmodernity.
Publisher: Routledge. Place of Publication: London. (This book tells us about Noam Chomsky who would have to be seen as one of the most significant and influential linguists of the twentieth century) • Keith Windschuttle (2003), The Hypocrisy of Noam Chomsky. Magazine Title: New Criterion. Volume: 21. Issue: 9. (This article mentions Chomsky’s hypocrisy which situates as the most illuminating appraise of the depths to which the left-wing political activism he has done so much to circulate has now sunk.
) • South End Press Collective (1998), Talking about a Revolution: Interviews with Michael Albert, Noam Chomsky, Barbara Ehrenreich, Bell Hooks, Peter Kwong, Winona LaDuke, Manning Marable, Urvashi Vaid, and Howard Zinn. Publisher: South End Press. Place of Publication: Cambridge, MA. (This book has an interview with Noam Chomsky in which he tells about his life, his views about philiosophy, linguistics and political and what he has done in the fields. )Sample Essay of BuyEssay.org