Linguistics: An Introduction to Language and Communication (2017 7 ed). p. 225 Middle.
Semantics has not always enjoyed a prominent role in modern linguistics. From World War I to the early 1960s semantics was viewed, especially in the United States, as not quite respectable: its inclusion in a grammar (as linguists sometimes call a scientific description of a language—see Chomsky 1965) was considered by many as either a sort of methodological impurity or an objective to be reached only in the distant future. But there is as much reason to consider semantics as a part of grammar as syntax, morphology, or phonology. It is often said that a grammar describes what fluent speakers know of their language—their linguistic competence (recall chapter 1). Given this, then the description of meaning is a necessary part of the description of a speaker’s linguistic knowledge (i.e., the grammar of a language must contain a component that describes what speakers know about the semantics of the language)
I was startled to read this, as it feels obvious that “meaning” is crucial to any subject that deals with language, like philosophy or literary theory?
If linguistics from 1910-1960 truly disregarded semantics, then did linguistics students never learn about semantics? Or did they at least study philosophy of language? Or did linguistics belittle philosophy of language too?