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Boris Gasparov brings great clarity to and elaborates on the rather freely used terminology associated with Ferdinand de Saussure, such as the notion of the arbitrariness of language and the 'binaries' of synchronic and diachronic aspects of language and of the signifier and the signified. Furthermore, Gasparov negotiates the uncompleted claims and unresolved contradictions of Saussure's work by invoking the early German Romantic discourse on language. His comparative reading offers a reciprocal illumination of the respective critical legacies of early German (Jena) Romanticism and Saussure's oeuvre. This volume should be of great interest to scholars of literary criticism and history, Romantic literary theory and literary modernity, and structuralism and poststructuralism, and to 'Saussurians' of all creeds.