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A Dynamic Study Of Contexts And Word Meaning

Posted on:2013-12-15Degree:MasterType:Thesis
Country:ChinaCandidate:L QiuFull Text:PDF
GTID:2235330374459288Subject:English linguistics
Abstract/Summary:PDF Full Text Request
Language meaning, one of the basic issues in linguistic studies, is the core of human communication. However, different linguistic schools have different interpretations on what meaning is. In fact, these different interpretations have resulted in different understandings on the essence of word meaning. Meaning and context are two basic and correlated concepts in pragmatics, but word meaning studied in pragmatics is different from grammatical and semantic studies, because in pragmatics we must take contexts into consideration. With the further researches on communication process, the approach to contexts has turned to be dynamic and the focus has switched to language users.With the development of context theories and pragmatics, it is far from enough to study the meaning in view of grammatical and semantic fields, because word meanings generated in communication are really beyond our imagination. The process of communication is dynamic, and context, as the important element of communication, is also dynamic. In taking the word as the basic unit in language expressions, it is very important to use and interpret word meaning in verbal communication. In communication word meaning changes with the changes of contexts, and the changed meaning results in the changes of communicative meaning. The communicators will construct new contexts depending on the changed communicative meaning. In fact, communication is a constructed and influenced process between contexts and utterances. In all, communication can’t be isolated from contexts and word meaning, and they are dynamic in communication.This thesis aims at a dynamic study on contexts and word meaning, based on the relations between them. The author briefly reviews the development of the theory of context, Malinowski, Firth and Halliday’s point of view on the context, and exponds classifications and functions of context. On this basis, the author analyzes the close relationship between context and word meanings:context restricts the understanding of word meaning, communicative expression depends on the context. It is argued that contexts are dynamic in communication and word meaning is also dynamic in contexts. It is very important to grasp dynamic contexts so as to choose the right words or interpret the word meaning rightly for communicators. It attempts to explore dynamic contexts and word meaning in intra-linguistic contexts and extra-linguistic contexts by the way of combining the Verschueren’s contextual correlates of adaptability as the theoretical framework and some examples from relevant linguistic books or magazines. This thesis reflects the stream of dynamic and cognitive studies on contexts and word meaning, and especially the dynamic study of word meaning is the necessary and timely supplement for the traditional study.
Keywords/Search Tags:context, dynamic context, the contextual correlates of adaptability, staticword meaning, dynamic word meaning
PDF Full Text Request
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