2023. № 4 (38), 206-229

National Library of Russia


The article demonstrates that substantiation of phonological solutions with pure phonetic arguments is methodologically incorrect. To avoid common mistakes, it is important to keep phonology and phonetics apart as two diff erent disciplines, the former aimed to reveal the phonological system of a language, the latter studying speech sounds as the products of its functioning. The task of phonology must be achieved before addressing the questions of phonetics. That deriving a system from the results of its implementation is impossible is a particular case of the non-formalizable relationship between the material and the ideal world. A phonological system is revealed on the basis of the study of a speaker’s language behavior, rather than the physical parameters of speech. It is unacceptable to include phonetic characteristics in the defi nitions of phonological concepts (vowel or consonant phoneme, syllable, stress, etc.), because the categories of linguistic thinking do not have material components. The data of narrow phonetics have no direct application when considering phonological problems; they can be useful in discovering problematic questions for closer scrutiny, as well as in identifying points of greater or  lesser stability in the system that may manifest themselves in historical development. Ideas about the reality of the language system as part of the speaker’s mental activity presuppose uniqueness of its adequate description. Such a description is based on a detailed treatment of internal connections between the components of the system (phonology and grammar), the use of psycholinguistically established facts being applied to cases when solutions in linguistic terms per se are impossible. Phonological systems of languages are individual; there is no universal set of types and properties of their constituents, the diff erences being the basis of linguistic typology (phonemes vs syllabemes, functional load of a syllable, phonological features of a word, etc.). Further development of phonology requires a logically impeccable grounding of phenomena described, a consistent functional approach to the diverse material of specifi c languages. 
The above considerations are illustrated by examples from diff erent parts of the phonological description.