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Termcraft cover

Book Details:
  • 472 pages
  • Black & White
  • 8.5 x 11.0 inches
Available Formats:
  • Hardcover
  • 978-1-4602-1665-1 Hardcover

Ancient civilizations, Theory of terminology, Structuralism, Categories, Aristotle, Balkans, Near East

The emergence of terminology science from the Vincans and Sumerians to Aristotle by J. L. F. Lambert

Termcraft is a world-heritage story. It chronicles the origins of naming, writing, and reasoning through the prisms of terminology science and linguistics. Revolving around Greek philosophy, early mythology, and primitive pottery and rock marking, it reveals how the Term became the keystone of scientific research, knowledge transfer, and economic development. Speech and writing are posited as referential systems used to control space and time, thereby ensuring survival. Ice Age symbols inaugurate 'signs for special purposes', and Balkan Vinčan logograms and later Sumerian and Egyptian pictograms point to Languages for Special Purposes, with determinatives marking technical concepts. The doctrines of ideas, naming, and being are scrutinized; their interaction with cosmic order and individuation through boundaries is illustrated with a deified ‘Creating Word’ from Mesopotamia, Egypt, and The Levant. The logic of the Word's role in self-defining and reasoning, both analogous and prognosticative, is analyzed. A perception-processing tool, the Logos, is identified in the first definition of ‘definition’ and ‘term’, and in syllogistic substitutions; when used together with Aristotelian categories of thought, they clarify language and discourse. What emerges is a fool-proof, thought-testing matrix based on a new systemic Word, the Term—the paradigm of today’s information bytes.

Jean Lambert’s meticulously elaborated work “Termcraft: The emergence of terminology science from the Vinčans and Sumerians to Aristotle” sheds new light on the emergence of terminology in earliest periods of inter-human language development. - Dr. Christian Galinski, Infoterm (Vienna, Austria)

Lambert delves deeply into the history of linguistics with this book, the captivating result of thorough research. The most fascinating part of ancient history is […] the remarkable development of the human ability to talk about specific things in exact terms. Termcraft not only tracks this incredible change from its beginnings, but it also imbues it with a powerful sense of real importance, demonstrating through reasoning, research, and visuals that the development of the modern world hinged on the creation of specialized definitions and terms for trade, religion, and philosophical thought. […] This text is heavily augmented by charts and graphs, both in-line and in a number of useful appendices. […] Plenty of footnotes add interesting (and often necessary) asides explaining the cultural context […]. While well written and interesting, Termcraft may not be beginners’ fare. [...] Lambert goes much further into the day-today needs, business concerns, religious beliefs, and priorities of these cultures than many history textbooks. Thanks to this, Termcraft nearly doubles as a walk-through of the ancient world. […] Termcraft is well worth the slow read. […] Anyone interested in how people came to define the world, and the reasons for and results of their trouble, will want to take a look.

Anna Call (ForeWord Clarion Reviews [ Five Stars (out of Five)])

Prof Lambert’s work explores the roots of terminology from the earliest times, tracing the history of the Term from mankind’s very beginnings to modern applications of terminology science. He gives a lucid account of the different philosophical underpinnings which have shaped terminology theory and practice through the ages. This is a book for the specialist [and] it requires a close and dedicated reading.

Prof E Taljard, Department of African Languages (University of Pretoria, South Africa)

From the Preface:

Mr Lambert has set himself the daunting task of tracing the prehistory of the technical term from its beginnings in the Ice Age to its definition by Aristotle, and [its place] in logical reasoning. [He] looks at the development of languages for special purposes in [ancient] Egypt and Mesopotamia, […] and examines the emergence of the Creative Word [and] the mechanisms by which terms were coined […]. The [book chronicles] the early development of workshop language and the separation of scientific language from it.

L. G. Kelly, Darwin College (University of Cambridge, U.K.)

Jean L. F. Lambert is the founder and former head of the Terminology Unit of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. He holds a Master’s degree in Applied Linguistics from the University of Ottawa, Canada, and was educated in French boarding schools (lycées Montaigne and Champollion) and in the Balkans and North America. Mr. Jean Lambert’s unit contributed to a 125% increase in corporate translation output, and he was personally instrumental in casting the first multilingual police dictionary on the Internet, Polex+®. In addition to developing and teaching a terminology course at the University of Ottawa, Jean Lambert has been a linguistic advisor to a range of agencies, from the Kent Constabulary for Channel Tunnel operations, to the Cyprus Association of Translators. He is the author of a glossary on plate tectonics, of the International Illustrated Vocabulary of English-French Fingerprint Terminology with a Short Index in Six Languages, and of unpublished short stories (incl. Sur les traces d’Hannibal, Special Jury Prize, Italian Week, Ottawa, 2007).


J. L. F. Lambert
Dr. L. G. Kelly, Darwin College, Cambridge

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