Radoslav Katičić (pronounced [rǎdoslaʋ kâtitʃitɕ]; 3 July 1930) is a Croatian linguist, classical philologist, Indo-Europeanist, Slavist and Indologist, one of the most prominent Croatian scholars in the field of humanities.
At the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb, he received a degree in Classical Philology in 1954. The same year he started working as a part-time librarian at the Seminar for Classical Philology at the same faculty. His first scientific works were on the subjects of Ancient Greek philology and Byzantine studies.
As a stipendist of the Greek government he visited Athens in 1956-57, and in 1958 he was elected as an assistant at the Department for Comparative Indo-European Grammar at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Zagreb.
In 1959 he received his Ph.D. with the thesis Pitanje jedinstva indoeuropske glagolske fleksije ('The question of unity of Indo-European verbal flexion'). During the period of 1960-61 he was a stipendist of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation in Tübingen. After the return to his main university, he became a docent on Indo-European and general linguistics. Soon after, he served as a head of the newly formed Department for General Linguistics and Oriental Studies. In 1966 he became associate, and in 1973 full professor. Beside general and Indo-European linguistics, he also taught Old Iranian and Old Indic philology.
In 1977 he became full professor of Slavic philology at the University of Vienna, Austria.
In 1973 he was selected as an extraordinary member of the Yugoslav Academy of Sciences and Arts (now Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts), and in 1986 he became a full member. In 1981 he became a corresponding member of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, in 1989 becoming a full member, and since 1989 serving as a head of the renowned Balkan commission. In 1984 he became a member of the Academy of Sciences and Arts of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in 1987 member of the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters, and in 1991 member of the Academia Europaea. In 1989 he received an honorary doctorate from the University of Osijek, and in 1999 an honorary degree and professorship at the Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest.
In 2005 he became the head of Council for Standard Croatian Language Norm. He was on that function until council's abolition in 2012.
In the past twenty years he chiefly researched on the topic of history of Croatian grammar, philology, early Croatian Middle Ages, engaging in extensive synthetic research of the key periods of history of Croatian literature and the reconstruction of Proto-Slavic ceremonial texts, sacral poetry of mythological content, and legislative literature.
Katičić's scholarly contributions which consists of more than 150 titles (books and papers) can be divided in four fields:
- General linguistics and Paleo-Balkan studies (mainly based on transformational grammar approach), consisting of works written in English:
- A Contribution to the General Theory of Comparative Linguistics (the Hague-Paris, 1970)
- The Ancient Languages of the Balkans, 1-2 (the Hague-Paris, 1976)
- Linguistic-stylistic works on aspects and history of various European (Ancient Greek, Byzantine) and non-European literatures:
- Stara indijska književnost/Old Indian literature, Zagreb 1973
- Numerous studies on Croatian language history, from the inception of the Croats in the 7th century onwards. Katičić has charted the meanderings in the continuity of Croatian language and literature, from the earliest stone inscriptions and Glagolitic medieval literature in the Croatian recension of Church Slavonic to the works of Renaissance writers such as Marin Držić and Marko Marulić, who wrote in a Croatian vernacular. He also explored language standardization and wrote a syntactic description of modern Croatian (Sintaksa hrvatskoga književnoga jezika/Syntax of Standard Croatian, Zagreb 1986), based on texts by contemporary authors such as Miroslav Krleža and Tin Ujević.
- Synthetic works that explore the beginnings of Croatian civilization in a multidisciplinary fashion based on philology, archeology, culturology, paleography and textual analysis
- Uz početke hrvatskih početaka/Roots of Croatian roots, Split 1993
- Litterarium studia, Vienna-Zagreb, 1999 (in German and Croatian)
Some aspects of his work meet criticism, primarily his puristic approach to the linguistic terminology, the primordialist view of nations, and subjectivity in articles on language policy. Besides, his syntactic description has been judged negatively by other Croatian syntacticians.
- Kordić, Snježana (1995). Relativna rečenica [Relative Clauses] (PDF). Znanstvena biblioteka Hrvatskog filološkog društva ; 25 (in Serbo-Croatian). Zagreb: Matica hrvatska & Hrvatsko filološko društvo. pp. 317–321. ISBN 953-6050-04-8. LCCN 97154457. OCLC 37606491. OL 2863536W. Archived (PDF) from the original on 8 July 2012. Retrieved 19 March 2015.
- Gröschel, Bernhard (2009). Das Serbokroatische zwischen Linguistik und Politik: mit einer Bibliographie zum postjugoslavischen Sprachenstreit [Serbo-Croatian Between Linguistics and Politics: With a Bibliography of the Post-Yugoslav Language Dispute]. Lincom Studies in Slavic Linguistics ; vol 34 (in German). Munich: Lincom Europa. pp. 323, 359. ISBN 978-3-929075-79-3. LCCN 2009473660. OCLC 428012015. OL 15295665W.
- Kordić, Snježana (2009). "Svijet o nama: Bernhard Gröschel, Das Serbokroatische zwischen Linguistik und Politik" [About us – World point of view: Bernhard Gröschel, Serbo-Croatian Between Linguistics and Politics] (PDF). Književna republika (in Serbo-Croatian). Zagreb. 7 (10–12): 324. ISSN 1334-1057. ZDB-ID 2122129-7. Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 August 2012. Retrieved 6 May 2013. (NSK).
- Kordić, Snježana (2010). Jezik i nacionalizam [Language and Nationalism] (PDF). Rotulus Universitas (in Serbo-Croatian). Zagreb: Durieux. pp. 376–377. ISBN 978-953-188-311-5. LCCN 2011520778. OCLC 729837512. OL 15270636W. Archived (PDF) from the original on 8 July 2012. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
- Pranjković, Ivo (1988). "Nekoliko napomena o Sintaksi prof. Katičića" [A few Remarks on Prof. Katičić’s Syntax]. Jezik (in Serbo-Croatian). Zagreb. 36 (1–2): 5–8. ISSN 0021-6925.
- Kordić, Snježana (1992). "Relativna rečenica – gramatičke nedoumice" [Relative clause – uncertainties in grammar books] (PDF). In Andrijašević, Marin; Vrhovac, Yvonne. Strani jezik u dodiru s materinskim (in Serbo-Croatian). Zagreb: Hrvatsko društvo za primijenjenu lingvistiku. pp. 151–152. OCLC 438850199. Archived (PDF) from the original on 29 December 2012. Retrieved 4 June 2015.
- Raguž, Dragutin (1994). Odnosne rečenice s veznikom/relativom što [Relative Clauses with the conjunction/relativiser što]. Biblioteka Jezikoslovlje ; 7 (in Serbo-Croatian). Zagreb: Hrvatska sveučilišna naklada. pp. 10, 43, 54, 67, 76–78. ISBN 953-1690-15-4.
- Kordić, Snježana (1996). "Pronomina im Antezendenten und Restriktivität/Nicht-Restriktivität von Relativsätzen im Kroatoserbischen und Deutschen" [Pronouns in antecedents and restrictive / non-restrictive relative clauses in Serbo-Croatian and German] (PDF). In Suprun, Adam; Jachnow, Helmut. Slavjano-germanskie jazykovye paralleli/Slawisch-germanische Sprachparallelen. Sovmestnyj issledovatel'skij sbornik slavistov universitetov v Minske i Bochume (in German). Minsk: Belorusskij gosudarstvennyj universitet. pp. 172–174. OCLC 637166830. Archived (PDF) from the original on 29 December 2012. Retrieved 7 May 2013.