Cognitive Linguistic Approach to Terminology Study Dissertation

п»їDistinctive features of the Cognitive Linguistic approach to vocabulary study Draft

John Ur Taylor and Jeannette Littlemore

To look in: M Littlemore and J Taylor (eds), Bloomsbury Companion to Cognitive Linguistics. 2014.

1 . Defining and positioning Intellectual Linguistics

Cognitive linguistics began as an approach to the study of language, however it now has ramifications and applications far beyond language in different traditional impression of the phrase. It has it is origins in the 1980s as being a conscious reaction to Chomskyan linguistics, with its emphasis on formalistic syntactic analysis and its particular underlying supposition that dialect is independent from other kinds of cognition. More and more, evidence was beginning to show that vocabulary is learned and processed much in a similar manner as other types of information about the world, and that the same cognitive operations are involved in vocabulary as are involved in other forms of thinking. For instance , in our day-to-day lives, functioning at issues from different angles, we get up close to them or further aside and see them from diverse vantage factors and with different levels of granularity; we measure the relative features of our environment and decide which are important and have to be attended to and which are significantly less important and need to be backgrounded; we group information jointly, perceive and create patterns in our environment, and look for these patterns in new environments when we encounter them. Even as we will see in this volume, many of these processes are in work in dialect too. Both the key characters who are associated with the inception of Cognitive Linguistics are George Lakoff and Ronald Langacker. Both, it should be recalled, started their particular careers because members of any group of fresh scholars associated with the radical fresh approach spearheaded by Noam Chomsky. By 1980s, nevertheless , both Lakoff and Langacker were becoming more and more disaffected with the formalistic method to syntax linked to the Chomskyan school. Both scholars turned their attention, rather, to semantic issues, which will had been relatively neglected inside the Chomskyan platform. Lakoff elevated fundamental concerns with regard to ‘objectivist' se



that may be, theories which usually maintained that

sentence in your essay meaning maps onto objectively verifiable declares of affairs in the world. This individual argued, instead, that semantic content is mediated simply by how speakers construe and conceptualize the world. An important facet of construal is how we rank the things inside our environment. Taking on the notion of prototype category developed by cognitive psychologist Eleanor Rosch, Lakoff argued that words usually do not name characteristically defined classes, that is, types constituted with a set of important and adequate conditions. Rather, entities may be good, or less good, members of the category. In a crucial and highly important move, Lakoff then proposed that the distinct senses of the polysemous phrase, and even the different senses of

a syntactic building, might also always be analysed when it comes to a central, prototypical affiliate, and several extended, or more peripheral feelings. A noteworthy milestone right here is the dissertation by simply

one among Lakoff'

t students, Claudia Brugman, on the polysemy of the



(Brugman, 1981). Brugman argued that t

this individual ‘central', ‘prototypical' sense

combines the meanings of

‘above' and ‘across', as in

The fowl flew over the yard

. Extended

senses, related in advantage of a lot of common shared

features, include the ‘above' sense

, such as


heli is hanging over the slope,

the ‘across' sense, as with

Sam drove in the bridge

, the

‘covering' sense

, just as

Your woman spread the tablecloth above the table,

the dispersal impression, as in


guards had been posted throughout the hill

, and several more.


thesis (presented in Lakoff

1987: Case Study 2) not only motivated a plethora of


-studies, in addition, it provided...