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Research Methods in T&I Studies I Lexical Level (Collocations and Idioms) 13 October 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "Research Methods in T&I Studies I Lexical Level (Collocations and Idioms) 13 October 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 Research Methods in T&I Studies I Lexical Level (Collocations and Idioms) 13 October 2009

2 Categories of language Traditional linguistic categories  Sound structure (phonology)  Grammatical structure (syntax)  Word and sentence meaning (semantics)

3 Organisation of language Alternative way of looking at language in terms of how it is organised  Syntagmatic What actually manifests itself on the page  Paradigmatic Linguists’ abstractions

4 Lexical Level (Collocation and Idioms) SyntagmaticParadigmatic Grammar (syntax) Structure (e.g. SVO, dhq, SPOCA) System (e.g. pronoun system; active vs. passive) Lexis (vocabulary) Collocation (e.g. rancid butter, addled eggs, stale bread) Sets (e.g. lexical field of vehicles, flowers, etc.)

5 Organisation of language Alternative way of looking at language in terms of how it is organised  Syntagmatic What actually manifests itself on the page  Structure  Collocation  Paradigmatic Linguists’ abstractions  System  Sets

6 Lexical Level (Collocation and Idioms) Collocation  The tendency of certain items to co-occur regularly in a given language (Baker 1992:285) Lexical Set  Items which share a like privilege of collocation (share collocates)  e.g. for hair: dark, black, red, blonde, auburn

7 Lexical Level (Collocations and Idioms) Grammar  Structure Obligatory Largely predictive Lexis  Patterning Largely not predictive Organised on top of structure Can concern the recurrence of structural items

8 Lexical Level (Collocations and Idioms) Word  e.g. die, dies, died, dying Word-form  Token (e.g. man, men) Lexeme  Base form of a word, without inflections (e.g. DIE)

9 Lexical Level (Collocations and Idioms) Applying Lexical Analysis in T&I  Meaning does not totally organise the vocabulary of a language  Meaning in a text is cumulative  Categories of lexis different from grammar and semantics Collocation Lexical Set

10 Lexical Level (Collocations and Idioms) Lexical item  Any word or expression which has a unique pattern of collocation and which represents an independently meaningful stretch of language Grammar and lexis are two complementary ways of looking at language

11 Lexical Level (Collocations and Idioms) Types of collocation  Collocations which exist for semantic reasons (brown cow)  Culturally conditioned collocations (cottage cheese)  Arbitrary collocations (running commentary but not running discussion)

12 Lexical Level (Collocations and Idioms) Domain-specific collocations (e.g. vigorous depressions) Collocation and metaphor (e.g. time is money) Marked/unmarked collocation Collocational range and range extension Idioms and Fixed Expressions

13 Lexical Level (Collocation and Idioms) Some major functions of MWUs  Sequencing ideas: first and foremost  Anaphoric connections: in other words  Argumentation: as a result of, for that matter  Greetings and closings: How are you? See you later  Politeness routines: if you don’t mind, I beg your pardon  Assent/agreement: sure thing, you’re absolutely right  Rejection/conflictive: no way, you’re kidding, not on your life  Fluency/interactive devices: you see, I mean, you know

14 Lexical Level (Collocation and Idioms) Some major functions of MWUs  Markers of new information: guess what, you’ll never believe this  Suggestions: if I were you  Concessions: it’s up to you, never mind  Support: not to worry, don’t let it get to you  Qualification: mind you, and yet  Expression of emotions (gets more idiomatic): have/get cold feet, have butterflies in one’s stomach, turns one’s stomach  Expression of evaluation/assessment: small fry, not worth the paper it’s written on, worth peanuts

15 Lexical Level (Collocation and Idioms) Idioms  Literal (as a matter of fact)  Semi-transparent (skate on thin ice)  Opaque (spill the beans)  Misleading idioms (public school)

16 Lexical Level (Collocation and Idioms) Transparency/opacity continuum  Concretising (playing on visual dimension)  Playing on both literal and idiomatic meanings simultaneously

17 Lexical Level (Collocation and Idioms) Semantic fields and idiom  Parts of the body Syntactical structure  Can be extremely ‘fixed’ Ellipsis common with sayings  The grass is always greener Cultural references  East End, Harley Street, cucumber sandwiches Idioms vs. Allusions  ‘The Origin of the Species’/’The Origin of the Spices’

18 Lexical Level (Collocation and Idioms) References  Abu-Ssaydeh, Abdul-Fattah (2004) ‘Translation of English Idioms into Arabic’, Babel 50(2): 114–131.  Baker, Mona (1992) In Other Words, London & New York: Routledge. (Chapter 3: Equivalence Above Word Level)  Baker, Mona (in press) ‘Patterns of Idiomaticity in Translated vs. Non-translated English’, Belgian Journal of Linguistics. [Available on Intranet]  Baker, Mona and Michael McCarthy (1988) ‘Multi-Word Units and Things Like That’. Unpublished Manuscript, University of Birmingham. [Available on Intranet]

19 Lexical Level (Collocation and Idioms) References (cont.)  Bolinger, Dwight and Donald Sears (1981) Aspects of Language, New York: Harcourt Brace, 3rd Edition. (Chapter 4: Words and their Make-Up)  Fernando, C. (1996) Idioms and Idiomaticity, Oxford: Oxford University Press.  Gabrielatos, Constantinos (1994) ‘Pedagogical Grammar. Collocations: Pedagogical Implications and Their Treatment in Pedagogical Materials’. Unpublished Article, Cambridge: Research Centre for English and Applied Linguistics’ [Available on Intranet].

20 Lexical Level (Collocation and Idioms) References (cont.)  Gottlieb, Henrik (1997) ‘Quality Revisited: The Rendering of English Idioms in Danish Television Subtitles vs. Printed Translations’, in Anna Trosborg (ed.) Text Typology and Translation, Amsterdam: John Benjamins,  Mitchell, T. F. (1975) Principles of Firthian Linguistics, London: Longman. (Chapter 4: ‘Linguistic “goings on”: collocations and other lexical matters arising on the syntagmatic record’, pp ).  Newman, A. (1988) ‘The Contrastive Analysis of Hebrew and English Dress and Cooking Collocations: Some Linguistic and Pedagogic Parameters’, Applied Linguistics 9(3):

21 Lexical Level (Collocation and Idioms) References (cont.)  Rose, James H. (1978) ‘Types of Idioms’, Linguistics 203: [Short Loan Collection].  Shei, Chi-Chiang. (2005) ‘Fixedness in genre-specific language and intercultural differences: Comparing English and Chinese fire news corpora’, International Journal of Corpus Linguistics 10(2): [electronic journal]  Sinclair, J.M. (1987) ‘Collocation: a progress report’, in R. Steele and T. Threadgold (eds) Language Topics: Essays in Honour of Michael Halliday, Vol II, Amsterdam: John Benjamins,  Sinclair, John (1991) Corpus, Concordance, Collocation, Oxford: Oxford University Press.


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