Robert Henry Robins 1921–2000

F R. Palmer and Vivien Law

in Proceedings of the British Academy, Volume 115 Biographical Memoirs of Fellows, I

Published by British Academy

Published in print January 2003 | ISBN: 9780197262788
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191754210 | DOI:

Series: Proceedings of the British Academy

Robert Henry Robins 1921–2000

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Robert (Bobbie) Robins was a pioneer in the establishment of linguistics as an academic subject in Britain and the leading scholar throughout the world in the history of linguistics whose undergraduate career was interrupted by service in the RAF, in which he was required to learn Japanese and then teach it to service personnel. He joined the new Department of Phonetics and Linguistics at SOAS, University of London, in 1948 and became a professor in 1966. Robins published General Linguistics: an introductory survey in 1964 (4th edition 1989). His textbook, A Short History of Linguistics (1967), was the most comprehensive published, and he was elected Fellow of the British Academy in 1986. After his death, the Philological Society established an annual Robins Prize and the University of Luton has the R. H. Robins Memorial Prize for linguistics. Obituary by F. R. Palmer FBA and Vivien Law FBA.

Keywords: Robert Robins; FBA; Bobbie Robins; British Academy; linguistics; General Linguistics; A Short History of Linguistics; Robins Prize; Vivien Law; F. R. Palmer

Chapter.  3378 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Methods and Historiography

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