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Władysław Chłopicki Jagiellonian University. Poland Symposium ‘’Scala naturae” Tallinn 18 August 2014.

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Presentation on theme: "Władysław Chłopicki Jagiellonian University. Poland Symposium ‘’Scala naturae” Tallinn 18 August 2014."— Presentation transcript:

1 Władysław Chłopicki Jagiellonian University. Poland Symposium ‘’Scala naturae” Tallinn 18 August 2014

2 The little sister refers to close things to bring them even closer While the big sister manages bigger things, bigger transfers She is the neck while metaphor is the head Both have large eyes and thus imagistic capacities

3 ….the body [and are thus metonymic themselves] Or more accurately they steer the body Which is their co-text [linguistic] the body moves, walks, runs within some surrounding space – the con-text [extra-linguistic] movements of the body (usually goal-oriented) are meaningful only within that close and further-removed space (closer and further context)

4 Concepts just like situations are complex and consist of subconcepts or subevents We think in terms of actions, scenarios, complex, chronologically developing, or potentially developing We think vicariously, in terms of ‘’as if I was there” Meaning is usage-based – connected with a specific event

5 Metonymy is more than the relation of contiguity. It is based on associations, reference-point relations, situational embedding, all of which undergo inferences in order to be interpretable by the speaker and hearer. (The ham sandwich has wondering hands; cf. Evans and Green 2006: 167) Metonymy gives a (usually verbal) point of access to a concept, thus making it salient. This target concept maybe metaphorical itself. Metonymy often gives rise to blends, through which extra meaning emerges.

6 E.g. schematic metonymy Conceptualizer Ref.Pt. target Dominion metonymy target

7 relation situation-interna l subevent time situation type reality - potentiality place situation ICM situation- external thing situational core manner property thing means cause

8 1. People typically conceive of a situation as a whole gestalt. 2.Any situation comprises a complex network of associated concepts. 3.In “thinking for speaking”, the speaker decides on how to code the situation she wants to communicate in a given language in accordance with principles of cooperation. 4.The communicative act is (of necessity) metonymic and hence requires the speaker to gauge its adequacy by anticipating the hearer’s inferential task. 5.The hearer constructs the speaker’s intended meaning via metonymic inferences.

9 S 9 whole situation co-present subevent preconditioninitial centralfinal successive subevents concomitant salient end peripheral

10 Presence of the hearer as witness of the situation Reporting the situation – familiar or unfamiliar to the hearer, specifically or generally Genre of speech – oral or written Informational or esthetic (literary) or persuasive Serious or jocular Presence of convention, degree of conventionality – helps or hinders, but is a necessary reference point

11 Humour – anyone could write a novel given six weeks, pen, paper, and no telephone or wife (E. Waugh Chips Channon Diary 16 Dec 1934)

12 Information (crossword)- result of six weeks off in isolation, with pen, and ample paper, but no telephone or family? Information (science) – an experiment was carried out on 73 volunteers, men and women, who were isolated for six weeks with no access to phone or family and friends and given just pen and paper. As a result 58% produced complete novels, 23% generated sizable portions possible to complete later, 12% wrote their memoirs, while the remaining 7% wrote nothing at al, just scribbled and drew.

13 Persuasion – If only you could give me six weeks, pen, paper, and cut me from the telephone and family, I will easily write a stunning novel

14 Poetry –Pen and paper, quiet evenings, no phone rings nor nagging questions, page by page my world transpires, and unveils the thought congestion. Metaphor – Putting pen to paper in forced isolation is like conceiving a child through a hole in the prison wall Proverb – Pen to paper for six weeks makes your readers fall asleep

15 Carol Mattau to her husband, who had asked the age of a flirtatious starlet with noticeably thick legs: For God’s sake, Walter, why don’t you chop off her legs and read the rings? (T. Capote Answered Prayers (1986) Metaphor, blending but metonymy-driven (legs for trees as well as legs are trees) resulting in emergent meaning Asking the age, chopping off legs and reading readings are postulated POTENTIAL subevents for the FLIRT event (POTENTIAL FOR ACTUAL)

16 ASKING AGE (of women) -judging looks Socially awkward NEED TO INSPECT TO CONFIRM Why don’t you cut her legs and check the rings? Blend CHECKING AGE OF (THICK) LEGS (no rings inside) SIDE EFFECTS – counterproductive CHECKING AGE (of thick trees) NEED TO INSPECT Cut tree, check the rings Cut tree, check rings ecological motivation Ask the age NEED TO CONFIRM How old are you?

17 I find then I am but a bad anatomist (Oliver Knox in Wolfe Tone’s Rebels and Informers 1998, cutting his throat in prison, he severed his windpipe instead of his jugular and lingered for several days) OPERATION FOR PROFESSION

18 So basically you’re saying marriage is just a way of getting out of an embarassing pause in conversation? (Richard Curtis, Four Weddings and a Funeral 1994) Pause as salient precondition for marriage If an Englishman gets run down by a truck he apologizes to the truck (Jackie Mason) Apology as final subevent - salient for any scenarios of English behaviour

19 Often Daddy sat up very late working on a case of Scotch (Nathaniel Benchley in Robert Benchley 1955) Metaphoric double entendre based on schematic metonymy (repetitive movements scenario – reaching for drink, drinking and putting the drink down VS flipping pages, reading, writing, flipping pages, etc)

20 Advertising is the rattling of a stick inside a swill bucket (George Orwell) Metonymy is the salient specific co-present subevent of Rattling for Making (unnecesary) noise (POTENTIAL FOR ACTUAL) Metaphor – Advertising is making unnecessary noise

21 A little inaccuracy sometimes saves tons of explanation (Saki, The Square Egg 1924) - central subevent One of the nicest old ladies I have ever met (William Faulkner on Henry James) LADIES FOR EFFEMINATE MEN Waiting for the German verb is surely the ultimate thrill (Flan O’Brien, The Hair of the Dogma 1977) VERB FOR LANGUAGE Some weasel took the cork out of my lunch (W.C. Fields You Can’t Cheat an Honest Man 1939 film) CORK FOR BOTTLE Life is a sexually transmitted disease - initial subevent SEX FOR LIFE - LIFE IS A DiSEASE

22 A literary man – with a wooden leg (Dickens – Our Mutual Friend (1865) WHOLE – SALIENT PART What’s the use of a book, thought Alice, without pictures and conversations? (Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland 1865) WHOLE – SALIENT PART, WHOLE – FINAL SUBEVENT

23 METONYMIES ARE IRRESISTIBLE and hence their power We want to find out what is at the end of the neck, what it is leading to… Humour results if the neck is long and winding and attached not quite where it belongs – or perhaps

24 ‘’The foregrounding of metonymy as an essential conceptual tool of humour-making is undoubtedly innovative, welcome and valuable, and can eventually invalidate some components of script-based theories, because metonymy in not a between-domain or between-script relation” (Krikmann 2009: 29)

25 ‘’Blend-oriented analysis are fascinating to read, but as the conceptual integration theory as such is an ultimately and comprehensive ‘’theory of everything’…, the analyses that have been performed so far do not aim to tell us more exactly which blends do result in humour and which ones do not” (Krikmann 2009: 31) ‘’What is needed is social logic that allows a theory to ground the interpretation in the specific concerns and prejudices of the listener as social agent” (Krikmann 2009: 35)

26 Evans, Vyvyan and Melanie Green. 2006. Cognitive Linguistics. An Introduction. Edinburgh University Press. Evans, Vyvyan. 2007. A Glossary of Cognitive Linguistics. Edinburgh University Press. Krikmann, Arvo. 2009. On the similarity and distinguishability of humour and figurative speech. Trames 13 (63/58), 1, 14-40. Krikmann, Arvo. 2012. Estonian ‘three-nation’ jokes (1964-2012). A paper presented at 24th ISHS Krakow, Poland. 26 June. Sherrin, Ned. 2002. Oxford Book of Humorous Quotes. Oxford University Press. Radden, Gunther. 2014. Situation metonymies. First Figurative speech symposium, Thessaloniki. Unpublished.

27 Three passengers from Poland, Germany and Estonia are flying over Russia in a small kukuruzhnik plane. Suddenly both engines of the plane fail, and trying to avoid a plane crash, they want to jump. They find a parachute, a fire extinguisher and water hose and are about to jump off crying ‘’Long live” their native countries, but at the last moment they reflect and decide to show respect to their more powerful neighbours, so the Estonian shouts: Elagu Poola!, with a tear in his eye and jumps with his parachute, The Pole shouts ‘’Niech zyja Niemcy! ‘’and cries rather more profusely and jumps on the fire extinquisher, and then the German – what is he to do? He shouts „Lang lebe Estland!”, cries like a beaver and jumps with the water hose. All of them obviously land safely.

28 You might think they will land on the White Sea and will be sailing with a brown boat on it and will be in danger of being killed, but no! They land in the forest and and are accosted by a native Russian and are challenged to three tasks if they want to escape alive: drinking a gallon of vodka, shaking hands with a bear and raping a nun. Luckily for them, only three gallons of vodka are found available on the premises and after having easily gobbled them, all three of them (well almost all three) having come from vodka drinking countries, they are allowed to move on.

29 On the way they encounter a huge cat which demands milk from them but since they know the ways of cats they feed him mustard, knowing full well how to, and he happily eats all of it and lets them go. On the way out of the forest, since even in Russia the forest ends somewhere, they see a pub and gladly enter it. Now the bar tender, having ritually exclaimed: What is it? Some kind of joke?, serves them gallons and gallons of vodka.

30 Following that they engage in the bragging competition on the size of their members, which is naturally won by the German, and among all the confusion the golden fish appears and asks them their wishes. The Estonian wishes his own saarel and slowly dissapears there, the German wishes his own Schloss and dissapears there, and the Pole wants his friends back as he became very emotional and attached to the two after all they have gone through, and he gets his wish too. So they are all back drunk and happy.

31 Now it is time to drink Bruderschaft with the bar tender after all these vodkas, but he says ‘’OK. you can call me by my first name only after you manage to shoot the target at 100 meters”, so the Estonian says: I am Arvo Paart and I cannot shoot, the German says I am Kaiser Wilhelm and I am a good shooter and shoots precisely in the middle of the target. Finally, the Pole shoots and the arrow twists and turns so unluckily (or luckily as the story would have continued otherwise) that it kills the bar tender, the German, the Estonian and then hits himself, whereupon the Pole says : I am sorry.

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