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Presentation on theme: "APPLYING A COGNITIVE APPROACH TO TEACHING FIGURATIVE LANGUAGE IN TEFL CLASSES Saltanat Meiramova Gumilyov Eurasian National University"— Presentation transcript:


2 The Figurative Language Theory Psychological (Gibbs & OBrien 1990; Gibbs 1997; Nayak & Gibbs 1990) Cognitive (Lakoff 1980) Linguistic (Boers 1999, 2004; Skovfaki 2008) Trim (2007) Inesta and Pamies (2002) Sweetser (1990)

3 What is figurative or metaphorical language? Expressions – to carry coals to Newcastle, to burn ones boats, to trickle a water Words: to blossom, healthy, burning; headache, recipe, roots Proverbs: Birds of a Feather, Every cloud has a silver lining; No pain no gain Figurative language is represented by many figures of speech to achieve a special effect or meaning.

4 Metaphors Personification Similes Idioms Onomatopoeia Hyperbole Alliteration

5 Comparative analysis of Idioms classification The Oxford Dictionary of English Idioms (1993) Gibbs (1994) Fernando & Flavell (1981), Glaser (1988) Weinreich (1972), Gläser (1988)

6 Findings Oxford dictionary (1993) vs Fernando & Flavell (1981), Glaser (1988) - to burn ones boats Cross-cultural issues: Jack of all trades, open the gate The Oxford Dictionary (1993) vs Weinreich (1972), Gläser (1988) - cold war, black market blow ones trumpet and wet blanket pushing up daisies and apple of ones eye

7 Comparative analysis of colour idioms in English, French, Russian and Kazakh The English to feel blue means be depressed while in Russian голубой (literally: light blue) means to be homosexual. In Kazakh culture blue associates with the sky and symbolizes power, purity and masculine In French culture blue represents freedom. It exists in the French flag today originated around the time of the Revolution. blue-blooded refers to to be from noble or aristocratic descent in French avoir du sang bleu, in Russian быть голубой крови and in Kazakh it turns white (ақ сүіек).

8 Comparative analysis of colour idioms in English, French, Russian and Kazakh English idiom black list -list of suspects has formally and semantically equivalent structures both in French, Russian and Kazakh: liste noire, черный список, қара тізім. English a black day (for someone/something) - an unhappy day when something bad or sad happens/ un jour noire/черный день/ басына қара бұлт төну - this meaning is shared in all four languages. English black and blue - having bruises on the body after an accident, fight etc. Also in French noire et bleu, сплошь в синяках in Russian andкөк ала қойдай turns in Kazakh (literary: as a parti- coloured sheep)

9 Comparative analysis of colour idioms in English, French, Russian and Kazakh red light refers to sell sex and pornography in many countries, e.g. in Russian «улица красных фонарей» (literary: the street of red lamps) but not in Kazakh. the red carpet shares the meaning of welcoming or attention for an important visitor in all 4 languages. Red (in politics) means in French les rouges, in Russian красные and in Kazakh қызылдар associated with the communists and revolution

10 Comparative analysis of colour idioms in English, French, Russian and Kazakh a white night - J'ai passe une nuit blanche means to have a sleepless night in French, Russian, but not in English and Kazakh. English white collar workers meaning a non-manual worker is equivalent to French un travailleur de cols blanc, Russian белый воротничок or белоручка, and Kazakh ақ жағалылар. And in Russian and Kazakh it has a slightly negative meaning. English a white lie is a lie which does no harm and is more polite than the truth in French un mensonge blanc, in Russian ложь во спасение or безвинная ложь and in Kazakh бейкүнә өтірік.

11 Comparative analysis of colour idioms in English, French, Russian and Kazakh The Greens associates with Greenpeace, youth and environmentalists in all 4 languages. green with envy has negative meaning to be extremely envious of someone or something in Russian позеленеть от гнева, злости and in French with une colère bleue and in Kazakhашудан көгеру turns blue. English as green as grass means in French vert comme herbe (be inexperienced), in Russian быть молодым, неопытным новичком (new to something) and in Kazakh ашық ауыз (naive). green also in Russian refers to dollars (зеленые).

12 How to teach figurative language Thornbury (2002) Wright (1999) Bartlett (1932) - Effort aftermeaning

13 Why teach figurative language? to increase knowledge of vocabulary to organise and memorise new words to integrate skills work to improve language awareness and use

14 Identifying literary and non-literal meaning Questioning and answering practice to help the idioms meanings guessing or drawing the word association for a colour. When a very important person arrives in your country what colour of carpet is rolling out for then to walk on? What colour makes you to remember that day? In your language what colour do you use to describe bruises? Do you have idioms in your language which have the same meaning as some of these? a storm in a teacup; to have your heart in your mouth; to drink like a fish; to kill two birds with one stone

15 Communicating the values of culture Explain to students that metaphors and similes often express particular values in different cultures even if these are not very obvious. Show the students how to use the introduction to set out what the rest of the text would be about. Point out to students that metaphors and similes can range from the traditional (in dictionaries) to the fresh and newly invented. E.g. green for currency. Explain that colour associations can vary greatly and awareness of this would help students to avoid cultural stereotyping around colour. E.g. black in a black mood, black market, black humour.

16 Developing awareness/ Effort aftermeaning (Bartlett 1932) 1. What domain of experience do you think the following idiom comes from? a white elephant 2. Le monde appartient à ceux qui se lèvent tôt. The early bird catches the worm. Кто рано встает, тому бог дает. importance/violence expencive/useless Games/sports The world belongs to those who get up early.

17 Source: 1. Albino elephants were so rare in Siam (modern Thailand) that they automatically became property of the king who would give them to subjects he disliked. Since it was forbidden to use it for work, the elephant would sometimes bankrupt the subject. So, it means – a large, useless and extremely expensive possession

18 Identifying metaforical meaning; using English creatively What is the figurative meaning of the following idiom: to be in the red Colour idioms To be angry To be in debt To embarrass A white night A black day Once in a blue moon

19 Similar & practically coincide

20 EnglishFrenchRussianKazakh Live a cat – and-dog life Vivre une vie de chat et de chien Жить как кошка с собакой Ит-мысық болып өмір сүру Be in seventh heaven D'être au septième ciel Быть на седьмом небе Төбесі кокке жету To play with fire Jouer avec le feu Играть с огнём Oтпен ойнау

21 Partly similar but comprehended

22 EnglishFrenchRussianKazakh To be on somebodys hands Sur les mains de quelqu'un Быть связанным по рукам и ногам Жіпсіз байлану To promise wonders Promettre merveilles Сулить златые горы Аспандағы айды уәде ету To be in ones element Doit être un élément Быть в своей стихии Өзін-өзінше сезу

23 Different and sometimes present difficulties

24 EnglishFrenchRussianKazakh Neither down nor feather Ni bas ni plume Ни пуха ни пера! Тисе терекке, тимесе бұтаққа A load off ones mind Oter un poids à quelquun Как гора с плеч свалилась Арқасынан ауыр жүк түсу

25 Teaching in context I was feeling a bit down in the dumps because it was raining cats and dogs, so I went to see Bill. Bill drinks like a fish because his work drives him up the wall. He is an EFL teacher. But he would never leave you in the lurch. Today I found him like a cat on hot bricks because he was bored. We decided to kill two birds with one stone by going to the pub and the launderette. We had a bone to pick with the barman in any case because he had forgotten to reserve the dartboard for us the previous day. We decided that not to go to the pub in protest would be just cutting off our noses to spite our faces. We did not want to make a mountain out of a molehill either.

26 Consolidation Choose the colour which completes the idiom– black or white: HAF 399 I used to be the _____ sheep of the family, he said. (17) HAF F9W 728 In English, there is even a term for the surrender of truth to politeness: a _____ lie. (14) (BNC) F9W Look back at the idioms of the lesson and add the missing colour: Theres too much _________ tape. I do it once in a _________ moon. It was a bolt out of the _________.

27 Consolidation Figure out which technique is being used? AT4 3808 He was as white as a sheet. (22) AT4 JXU 4344 It was like driving on black ice.(8) JXU Answer: Simile Q.: How do you figure? A.: comparing using as, like. (BNC) Write down any metaphors or similes you know in English and discuss them with your partner. Match the expressions with their definitions. Discuss whether the meaning of the expression is linked to the general associations for the colour, e.g. white lie, which suggests a lie that is pure or innocent.

28 Consolidation Idiom Quizzes – Colors Choose an idiom to replace the expression in the brackets: The government finally gave the city (permission) to build the new airport. (a) the green light (c) once in a blue moon (b) a horse of a different color (d) red tape I go to the swimming pool only (rarely) although I love to swim. (a) green around the gills (c) in the red (b) with flying colors (d) once in a blue moon Our company has been (losing money) for three years now. (a) rolling out the red carpet (c) in the red (b) yellow-bellied (d) green

29 Summing up the procedure Phase one: awareness of the origin of the idiom objective: to explore figurative associations for idioms and how they differ or similar cross- culturally Phase two: identifying the meaning of the idiom objective: to present and practise expressions and collocations connected with idioms, cross- cultural problems Phase three: consolidation

30 Conclusion Encourage students to learn language chunks to remember them better and use them appropriately Encourage students to play creatively with language To promote cognitive analytic activity To match idioms/metaphors with a jumbled list of definitions The existence of common patterns of idiomacity in English, French, Russian and Kazakh seems to be the result of a commonly shared human experience

31 References Seidl, J., McMordie, W. (1988). English Idioms. 5 th edition of English Idioms and How to Use Them. Oxford University Press. Lazar, G. (2003). Meanings and Metaphors. Activities to practise figurative language. Cambridge University Press. Lakoff, G. And Johnson, M. (1980). Metaphors We Live By. Chicago Kovecses, Z. And Szabo, P. (1996). Idioms: A view from cognitive semantics. In Applied Linguistics. Vol. 17/3. Lewis, Michael. (2000). Teaching Collocation. Further development in the Lexical Approach. Thomson, Heinle. p.132. The Oxford Dictionary of Current Idiomatic English Sinclair, J. (1991). Corpus, Concordance, Collocation. Oxford Press. Fernando, C. (1996). Idioms and Idiomaticity. Oxford University Press Ter–Minasova, S. (1996). Language, Linguistics and Life: A view from Russia, Moscow State University Association. Murphy M.L. (2010). Lexical meaning. Cambridge University Press. Nattinger J.R. and DeVarrico J.S. (1992). Lexical Phrases and Language Teaching. Oxford University Press.

32 Thank you for your kind attention!

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