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Lexical semantics By D.A. Cruse Chapter 4 Introducing lexical relations.

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Presentation on theme: "Lexical semantics By D.A. Cruse Chapter 4 Introducing lexical relations."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Lexical semantics By D.A. Cruse Chapter 4 Introducing lexical relations

3 Sense relations Syntagmatic relations –Serve discourse cohesion, adding necessary informational redundancy to the message, at the same time controlling the semantic contribution of individual utterance elements through disambiguation, for instance, or by signalling alternative – e.g. figurative – strategies of interpretation Paradigmatic relations –Reflect the way infinitely and continously varied experienced reality is apprehended and controlled trhougt being categorised, subcategorised and graded along specific dimensions of variation. They represent systems of choices a speaker faces when encoding his message.

4 Paradigmatic Lexical Relations Identity Inclusion Overlap Disjunction ABAB A B A B AB

5 Propositional Synonymy Definition: Synonyms are different lexemes which have the same or similar meanings - Identity. E.g. friend, pal, mate X is a propositional synonym of Y if: –X and Y are syntactical identical –S1 (X) = S2 (Y) Example: He was drunk ↨ He was intoxicated

6 Hyponymy Definition: The meaning of a word which must be said to be includedd in that of another – Inclusion. X is a kind of Y : i.e. x is the hyponym of y, and y is the superordinate of X –E.g. pop is a hyponym of music Music Hip-hoppoppunk Hypernym (superordinate) (Co-) hyponyms

7 Hyponymy Entailment: –A sentence containing a hyponym unilaterally entails a parallel sentence which is identical in all respects except that it contains a super- ordinate in place of the hyponym. E.g. John listens to pop entails John listens to music –Reversed direction (i.e. from superordinate to hyponym) A negative, universial quantifier, form part of a conditional clause or other expression of contingency. E.g. It’s not music entails It’s not pop –Exceptions

8 Compatibility Definition: The relationship that can be established between words with partly overlapping meaning –E.g. dark and night Defining characteristics: –No systematic entailment –Must have superordinate in common Human Being HusbandPoliceman Kinds of Compatibility – Strict compatibility – Contigent compatibility

9 Incompatibility The relation between classes with no members in common. X and Y are incompatibles if A is f(X) can be found which entails a parallel sentence of the form A is not f(Y): “It’s a cat” entails “It’s not a dog” Contrary relationship: –“I cycled to work” = true, “I walked to work” ≠ true –“I cycled to work” = false, “I walked to work” = true or false

10 Congruence Variants Finger = congruent meronym of hand Doctor = hypo-converse of patient Patient= superconverse of doctor

11 Partial relations Finish : can occur without overt DO, can take gerund complement (I have finished running) Complete: require an overt DO, cannot take gerund complement( ? I have completed running) Almost & practically => not always full equivalence e.g. p a

12 Quasi-relations Lack of super-ordinate for knife, fork and spoon –Quasi-superordinate would then be cutlery Lack of super-ordinate for red, orange and yellow –Quasi-superordinate would then be colour

13 Pseudo-relations angle & side –logical equivalence but state different things

14 Para-relations Lexical relations defined in terms of expectation rather than necessity Para-hyponymy –dog & pet: expected relationship but-test:“It’s a dog, but it’s a pet” (expressive paradox) “It’s a dog, but it’s not a pet” (normal) Para-incompatibility –involves negative expectation but-test: “He is a student, but he is also a bank manager” (normal) “He is a student, but he is not a bank manager” (redundant – more than is necessary)

15 The Semantic Head An element which interacts directly with an element or elements outside the construction. –e.g.: Extremely fast cars crash violently –Fast is the semantic head of extremely fast and cars is the head of extremely fast cars.

16 Head-modifier constructions A head-modifier construction is typically endocentric, that is to say, the head alone can play a grammatical role in the sentence identical to that of the whole construction. This construction is consequently reducible. –e.g.: We drank red wine  We drank wine

17 Head-compliment constructions A head-compliment construction is typically not reducible syntactically to the head alone. –e.g.: Arthur stroked the cat  Arthur stroked (what?)

18 Selector and Selectee It is generally possible to specify a selector in a construction in which co-occurrence restrictions are operating. In a head-modifier construction, the modifier is the selector, but in a head-complement construction it is the head which the selector. Selectors, generally, presuppose one or more semantic traits. –e.g.: Pregnant in pregnant X –X, the head of the construction, bears the semantic trait “female”. Selectees, in general, do not presuppose traits of their selectors.

19 Encapsulation The second directional property involves the head of a construction and any dependent item or items. A dependent item is expected to bring to a construction semantic traits not already prefigured in the head; if not the combination is pleonastic. Under such circumstances the head encapsulates the meaning of the dependent item. –e.g.: the male uncle

20 Philonyms, tautonyms and xenonyms A set of syntagmatic relations can be based on the results of putting grammatically appropriate lexical units together in a construction: –philonyms: if the combination is normal –tautonyms: if the combination is pleonastic we talk of the head of the tautonym –xenonyms: if the combination results in dissonance

21 Dissonance There are three degrees of dissonance: –Inappropriateness: Is diagnosed by the fact that it is cured by substituting a prepositional synonym for one of the items involved in the clash. –Paradox occurs when: There is no possibility of resolving dissonance by synonymous substitution But there exits a superordinate of either xenonym which is philonym of the other. –Incongruity Characteristic of incongruity is that there is no superordinate of either xenonym which can restore normality


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