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Semantics: The Analysis of Meaning

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1 Semantics: The Analysis of Meaning
Deny A. Kwary Airlangga University

2 Lexical Semantics (cf. p.274)
Semantic properties: The components of meaning of a word. Semantic feature: A notational device for expressing the presence or absence of semantic properties by pluses and minuses. Example of componential analysis: baby is [+ young], [+ human], [– abstract].

3 Identify the features (1)
1. (a) widow, mother, sister, aunt, maid (b) widower, father, brother, uncle, valet The (a) and (b) words are The (a) words are The (b) words are [+ human] [+ female] [+ male] 2. (a) bachelor, paperboy, pope, chief (b) bull, rooster, drake, ram The (a) and (b) words are The (a) words are The (b) words are [+ male] [+ human] [+ animal]

4 Identify the features (2)
3. (a) table, stone, pencil, cup, house, ship (b) milk, alcohol, rice, soup, mud The (a) words are The (b) words are [+ count] [- count] 4. (a) pine, elm, sycamore (b) dandelion, aster, daisy The (a) and (b) words are The (a) words are The (b) words are [+ plant] [+ tree] [+ flower]

5 Semantic Relations among Words (p. 269)
Synonymy: words that have the same meanings, e.g. start & begin. Antonymy: words that are opposites in meanings, e.g. hot & cold. Synonymy or Antonymy (p. 307) Flourish – thrive Intelligent – stupid Casual – informal Flog – whip Drunk – sober synonym antonym

6 Semantic Relations among Words (cf. page 270; with critical notes)
Polysemy: A word which has two or more related meanings, e.g. bright: ‘shining’ ; ‘intelligent’ Homonymy: A word which has two or more entirely distinct meanings, e.g. club: ‘a social organization’ ; ‘a blunt weapon’. Homophony: Different words pronounced the same but spelled differently, e.g. two and too. Homography: Different words spelled the same but pronounced differently, e.g. minute and minute.

7 Identifying homophones
1. [steə]  1. Stair, stare 2. [weist]  2. waste, waist 3. [si:liη]  3. sealing, ceiling 4. [kju:]  4. cue, queue 5. [sent]  5. sent, cent, scent

8 Identifying homographs
Read Wind Live Tear Invalid Bow Dove

9 Identifying Homonyms in Jokes
1. Time flies like an arrow Fruit flies like a banana 2. Policeman: Why have you parked your car here? Motorist: Because the sign says “Fine for Parking”. 3. Customer: Have you got half-inch nails? Ironmonger: Yes, sir. Customer: Then could you scratch my back. It’s very itchy

10 More semantic relations among words
Hyponymy: Words whose meanings are specific instances of a more general word, e.g. isosceles and equilateral are hyponyms of the word triangle. Metonymy: A word substituted for another word with which it is closely associated, e.g. diamond for a baseball field. Retronymy: An expression that would once have been redundant, but which societal or technoligical changes have made nonredundant, e.g. silent movies  movies  silent movies

11 That’s All For Today See You Next Week
Deny A. Kwary Airlangga University

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