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Michaela Zemková

Abstract

Although language is something deeply embedded in our nature, the question of its origin is of the same order as the misty question of the origin of life. I point out that the core of the problem can be rooted in the dichotomy between language and speech, similar to the dichotomy of genotype and phenotype in biology. Following the ontogeny–phylogeny framework, I propose that studies of language ontogeny, especially its early stages, can bring a new understanding to language, same as the study of communication in non-human primates..

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Tiago da Costa e Silva

Abstract

The aim of this article is to offer a reading of the poetic experience through the scope of the semiotics and pragmatism of Chares S. Peirce. Such a reading through semiotics and pragmatism unveils deeper levels of the process of interpretation involving abduction, an inference through which new meanings implied in the semantic tensions arise. Methodologically, the article begins with Roman Jakobson’s realisation that only a broader semiotical context, which breaches the boundaries of the dyadic components of significant and signified scope of structuralism, enables the access to deeper levels of poetic events. The article’s author then discusses the limitations of the dyadic relations of structuralism and, as a broader processual framework to assess poeticity, sets out to discuss the poetic experience from the perspective of pragmatism and its all-encompassing logic of abduction...

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Susan F. Schmerling

Abstract

This paper introduces rhetorical meaning to semantic theory; we use the term by analogy to tropes like metonymy in classical rhetoric, which yields ‘the American president’ from the White House—that is, it substitutes one referential meaning for another. Here we focus on two rhetorical meanings: intensification and attenuation. Intensification is expressed in English and many other languages by total reduplication (an old old man); attenuation is exemplified by Spanish ‘synthetic’ diminutive forms (hombrecito ‘little man’; cf. hombre ‘man’) and English and French ‘analytic’ formations (My Little Chickadee (film); petit caporal ‘Little Corporal’ (Napoléon Bonaparte)). Formally, a rhetorical meaning is a relation with one referential meaning as its domain and, as its codomain, a set of related referential meanings, the particular set specified by the rhetorical meaning at hand. The selection from among elements of the codomain, which can even seem contradictory out of context, is in fact highly context-dependent and indicates a critical role for pragmatics in an overall account of this meaning type.

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Vilém Uhlíř

Abstract

Following the conclusions of the previous paper (Uhlir, this issue), this paper adopts a theory that is based on the notion that the essence of language is uniquely human, with no homologue elsewhere in nature, and advances the possibility that human language is discontinuous not only within communication systems but also within representational systems. Linguistic data from disparate sources in Homo sapiens are contrasted with evidence from animals. After briefly discussing the dialectics between the mosaic approach to language and the holistic approach to an integrated left hemisphere, the paper culminates in a proposal of a general zoosemiotic theory of “Representational Systems” and a special anthroposemiotic theory of “Meta-representational Systems”.

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Vilém Uhlíř

Abstract

This paper offers a brief critical review of some of the so-called “Talking Animals” projects. The findings from the projects are compared with linguistic data from Homo sapiens and with newer evidence gleaned from experiments on animal syntactic skills. The question concerning what had the so-called “Talking Animals” really done is broken down into two categories – words and (recursive) syntax. The (relative) failure of the animal projects in both categories points mainly to the fact that the core feature of language – hierarchical recursive syntax – is missing in the pseudo-linguistic feats of the animals.

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Nataliya Panasenko

Abstract

The article highlights the category of literary space, connecting different topophones with the author's worldview. Topophones in the works by Ray Bradbury are used not only for identifying the place where the events unfold but they equally serve as the background to the expression of the author's evaluative characteristics of the modern world, his attitude to science, the latest technologies, and the human beings who are responsible for all the events, which take place not only on the Earth, but also far away from it.

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Iryna Pinich

Abstract

The study investigates the transition mechanisms of religious ideologemes observed in their lexical representation in the Victorian novel corpus. The paper claims that the amalgamation of Anglo-Catholic and Evangelical ideologies made for the subsequent transformation of theological virtues resulting in their internalized translation to the rising ideology of emotionalist moral values.

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Yaroslava Gnezdilova

Abstract

The article focuses on the notion of metapragmatics in general, including three steps of metapragmatic analysis, and studies academic written metadiscourse in particular. Special attention is drawn to the delimitation of the main types of metacommunicative means, or meta-means, with an emphasis on their functional specifics in academic written discourse. The article concludes with a list of meta-means, which are most typical of this discourse type.

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Zoltán Kövecses

Abstract

I discuss three large issues relating to media language. (1) How does conceptual metaphor theory affect the way we see the conceptual system that characterizes the main participants of communication in the media? (2) How do conceptual metaphors structure the language (and thought) used by the media? (3) Is the metaphorical mind of the participants of media communication a “self-contained” mind immune to the influence of context or is it affected by it?

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Olena Tykhomyrova

Abstract

This paper focuses on metafictional narrative strategies characteristic of contemporary English-language fiction. The research reveals the variety and stylistic peculiarities of these strategies, as well as specifies the definition of metafiction with regard to its liminal status and self-reflexivity. Narrative metalepsis, specific framing and plot arrangements, metafictional commentary, and other techniques have been analyzed resorting to numerous examples.