Language Norms: What and where are they?


  • Balder Edmund Ask Zaar Lund University



The notion of a language norm is far from clear. Lacking a conclusive explication, one may wonder what language studies are actually studying. Is it the experience of speakers? Is it their brains? Is it their behavior? Is it the product of expert intuitions? Even within linguistics the views seem scattered on this point, and no consensus has been reached on what the object of study in linguistics is supposed to be. The ontology of language norms is thus of high relevance, not only philosophically, but for the empirical implications of any potential ontological claim. In a question: what are we studying when we are studying language norms? This paper is thus an effort to, primarily with the help of Husserlian phenomenology, discuss language norms and their location in order to answer this question as well as to obviate or at least mitigate some of the concerning trends found in recent discussions on language norms.

Author Biography

Balder Edmund Ask Zaar, Lund University

Balder E. Ask Zaar is a graduate student specializing in theoretical philosophy and cognitive semiotics. Currently his primary interests concern questions surrounding epistemology, epistemic logic, phenomenology, metalinguistics, and the nature of language as viewed through the lenses of cognitive semiotics and analytic philosophy.




How to Cite

Ask Zaar, B. E. (2022). Language Norms: What and where are they?. Public Journal of Semiotics, 10(1), 26–39.