Martin Beneš, Martin Prošek
On the Concept of Minimal Intervention
A B S T R A C T
This article provides a theoretical and practical response to the so-called Concept of Minimal Intervention (CMI) first outlined in Cvrček (2008a), and later expanded upon in Cvrček (2008b). The theoretical part uses the analogy with Macura’s (1995) analysis of the early National Revival discourse and presents examples of (un)successful interventions into the language to provide textual proof that the CMI discourse consists of contradictory statements. It is thus revealed that the function of these statements is not to describe the phenomenon, but rather, to serve Cvrček’s own purpose: the negative depiction of language regulation and intervention into language. Presenting evidence from the language counselling service of the Czech Language Institute, the practical part demonstrates that CMI’s call for minimal intervention is not in accordance with the needs of the general public and that the means proposed to minimise intervention by linguists would not work as expected. A current view of the traditional concept of language cultivation, its terminology and methodology – refused by CMI – is also presented.
Key words: language cultivation, language counselling, codification, Concept of Minimal Intervention, language norm, literary language, theory of literary language
Klíčová slova: jazyková kultura, jazykové poradenství, kodifikace, koncept minimální intervence, norma, spisovnost, teorie spisovného jazyka
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