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英国文学1

Chapter5

Meaning

1. Geoffrey Leech (1974, 1981). Semantics: The Study of Meaning. Seven types of meaning: 1.Conceptual meaning logical, cognitive or denotative content. Associative meaning 2Connotative meaning What is communicated by virtue of what language refers to 3 Social meaning What is communicated of the social circumstances of language use 4 Affective meaning What is communicated of the feeling and attitudes of the speaker/writer 5Reflected and What is communicated through association with another sense of the same meaning expression 6 Collocative meaning What is communicated through association with words which tend to occur in the environment of another word 7 Thematic meaning What is communicated by the way in which the message is organized in terms of order and emphasis. (1) Conceptual meaning ? Also called ‘denotative’ or ‘cognitive’ meaning. ? Refers to logical, cognitive or denotative content. ? Concerned with the relationship between a word and the thing it denotes, or refers to. (2) Connotative meaning ? The communicative value an expression has by virtue of what it refers to, over and above its purely conceptual content. ? A multitude of additional, non-criterial properties, including not only physical characteristics but also psychological and social properties, as well as typical features. ? Involving the ‘real world’ experience one associates with an expression when one uses or hears it. ? Unstable: they vary considerably according to culture, historical period, and the experience of the individual. ? Any characteristic of the referent, identified subjectively or objectively, may contribute to the connotative meaning of the expression which denotes it. (3) Social meaning ? What a piece of language conveys about the social circumstances of its use. ? Dialect: the language of a geographical region or of a social class. ? Time: the language of the 18th c., etc. ? Province: language of law, of science, of advertising, etc. ? Status: polite, colloquial, slang, etc. ? Modality: language of memoranda, lectures, jokes, etc. ? Singularity: the style of Dickens, etc. ? domicile: very formal, official residence: formal abode: poetic home: general steed: poetic horse: general nag: slang gee-gee: baby language (4) Affective meaning ? Reflecting the personal feelings of the speaker, including his attitude to the listener, or his attitude to something he is talking about. ? You’re a vicious tyrant and a villainous reprobate, and I hate you for it! ? I’m terribly sorry to interrupt, but I wonder if you would be so kind as to lower your

voices a little. or ? Will you belt up. (5) Reflected meaning ? Arises in cases of multiple conceptual meaning, when one sense of a word forms part of our response to another sense. ? When you hear ‘click the mouse twice’, you think of Gerry being hit twice by Tom so you feel excited. ? Many taboo terms are result of this. (6) Collocative meaning ? The associations a word acquires on account of the meanings of words which tend to occur in its environment. ? pretty: girl, boy, woman, flower, garden, colour, village, etc. ? handsome: boy, man, car, vessel, overcoat, airliner, typewriter, etc. (7) Thematic meaning ? What is communicated by the way in which a speaker or writer organizes the message, in terms of ordering, focus, and emphasis. ? Mrs Bessie Smith donated the first prize. ? The first prize was donated by Mrs Bessie Smith. ? They stopped at the end of the corridor. ? At the end of the corridor, they stopped. 2. The Referential Theory 指称论 ? Words → Meaning: Words ‘name’ or ‘refer to’ things – Platonic (the theory of meaning which relates the meaning of a word to the thing it refers to, or stands for, is known as the referential Theory ? Words→Concepts→Things: Ogden & Richards thought/concept/image symbolizes symbol (word) stands for 3. Sense Relations 涵义关系(好好理解) ? Synonymy ? Antonymy{ Complementary Converse ? Hyponymy 3.1 Synonymy 同义关系 buy/purchase thrifty/economical/stingy autumn/fall tube/underground 3.2 Antonymy 反义关系 Gradable antonymy 等级反义关系 good ----------------------- bad long ----------------------- short ----------------------- small Can be modified by adverbs of degree like very. Can have comparative forms. refers to referent (object)

Gradable

flat/apartment

big

Can be asked with how. Complementary antonymy 互补反义关系 Converse antonymy 反向反义关系 buy : sell lend : borrow give : receive

parent : child

husband : wife

3.3 Hyponymy 上下义关系 ? Inclusiveness ? A is included in / a kind of B. ? Cf.: chair and furniture, rose and flower ? Superordinate/hypernym: the more general term ? Hyponym: the more specific term ? Co-hyponyms: members of the same class 4. Componential Analysis 成分分析法(例子) 参见课本 P102 ? HUMAN ? man (ADULT, MALE) ? woman (ADULT, FEMALE) ? boy (NON-ADULT, MALE) ? girl (NON-ADULT, FEMALE) 5.Sentence Meaning 好好看( 参见课本和 Ipad)P105 The meaning of a sentence is obviously related to the meanings of the words used in it, but it is also obvious that sentence meaning is not simply the sum total of the words. 6. Logical Semantics 逻辑(命题)语义(参见课本)命题


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