About Key Concepts and How to Study Them

in Contributions to the History of Concepts
Jan Ifversen Aarhus Unviersity jif@cas.au.dk

Search for other papers by Jan Ifversen in
Current site
Google Scholar
Restricted access

The article explores the object and the methodology of conceptual history, by elaborating on Reinhart Koselleck's idea of key concepts, and proposes to study them according to two different aspects of meaning: The representational aspect, which touches upon the relations between words and concepts and studies words and concepts within semantic fields, and the referential aspect, which brings in both the social history reflected in semantic changes and the contexts in which the concepts serve as factors, and which make the use of the concepts possible. The article concludes with a methodological suggestion for the use of digitized textual databases for diachronic as well as synchronic histories of concepts.

  • Collapse
  • Expand


All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 1157 448 53
Full Text Views 142 34 3
PDF Downloads 290 76 5