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Construction Of Metaphorical Meanings In Animal Terms

Posted on:2006-02-15Degree:MasterType:Thesis
Country:ChinaCandidate:Y KongFull Text:PDF
GTID:2155360155952154Subject:English Language and Literature
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Having close relationship with men's life, animals are friends and neighbors of human beings. Also, animal terms play important role in human languages. This thesis is a study of meaning construction in animal terms within a framework of cognitive linguistics.Based on Fauconnier & Turner's Conceptual Blending Theory (1996) and Spcrber & Wilson's Relevance Theory (1995), the author suggests a new framework-Relevance Blending Theory (RBT) within which similar mechanisms of meaning construction in animal terms can be explained reasonably by way of conceptual blending and looking for optimal relevance. It is considered that construction of metaphorical meanings is not merely a set of mappings between a source domain and a target domain; rather, it is an on-line relevance-blending process which involves mappings among multiple mental spaces and acquiring optimal relevance at last.Within the framework of RBT, two levels of meaning construction are classified: overt construction and covert construction. When processing overt construction of metaphorical meanings, more accessible contextual assumptions are available in blending space. So without the help of more contextual information, optimal relevance can be arrived while achieving greatest contextual effect. While in covert construction, more efforts should be paid to acquire optimal relevance. That is. more information about lexis, logic and encyclopedia including socio-cultural factors is associated to construct the metaphorical meaning. These two kinds of construction proceeding in coordination to describe and analyze metaphorical meanings in animal terms can not only associated meanings of animal terms in a systematic way. but also provide us a new perspective to study meaning construction of other terms.
Keywords/Search Tags:animal terms, conceptual blending theory, relevant theory, meaning construction, metaphorical meanings
PDF Full Text Request
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