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Meaning Construction Of Verbal Humor In Fortress Besieged From Conceptual Integration Perspective

Posted on:2015-02-23Degree:MasterType:Thesis
Country:ChinaCandidate:Y J LiuFull Text:PDF
GTID:2255330428975956Subject:Foreign Linguistics and Applied Linguistics
Abstract/Summary:PDF Full Text Request
Humor is a very complex, intriguing and ubiquitous language phenomenon and plays an important role in people’s daily verbal communication and written expression. From ancient time to modern society, studies on humor made by researchers have covered such diverse areas as anthropology, semiotics, psychology, sociology and linguistics. These researches have made an elaborate analysis regarding humor’s definition, classification, production, function, and so on. However, studies on meaning construction of humor under the framework of conceptual integration theory are comparatively insufficient. According to Fauconnier and Turner(2002), meaning construction is conducted in the conceptual integration network which contains mental spaces; within a completed conceptual integration network model, there are usually four mental spaces:two input spaces, a generic space and a blended space; the construction and interaction of the four mental spaces is the basis for the emerging of new meaning. When the emergent structure arises, meaning construction is completed.This thesis, taking Ch’ien Chung-shu’s Fortress Besieged as the research material and Fauconnier and Turner’s conceptual integration theory as the theoretical foundation, attempts to make a study on the meaning construction of verbal humor. The thesis author uses a qualitative study method to make case study regarding the humorous corpus in Fortress Besieged. Overall considering the definition of verbal humor and its characteristic and functions, the thesis author presents the criteria for collecting data and collects100typical items according to the criteria. The thesis author analyzes these data from the following aspects:firstly, elaborating the meaning construction process of verbal humor in detail; then classifying the100items according to the four types of conceptual integration network and interpreting the meaning construction within the different network types aiming to understand the features of each type of verbal humor; lastly, analyzing the vital relations and their compression during the meaning construction process in consideration of the importance of vital relations in the process of meaning construction.The major findings of the study are summarized as follows:1) The creating of humorous effect in Fortress Besieged can be explained and illustrated by CIT from a cognitive perspective. The meaning construction of verbal humor based on CIT, similar to the meaning construction of other language phenomena, needs the construction and interaction of four mental spaces.2) Among these collected data in Fortress Besieged, verbal humor belonging to single-scope network is the most common and widespread and verbal humor belonging to simplex network is the least. Although the conceptual integration process in each type of networks has its own characteristic, the meaning construction of verbal humor still goes through three processes:composition, completion and elaboration. The meaning construction of verbal humor is on the basis of incongruity between different structures within the input spaces, or between the structure of input spaces and the structure recruited from background knowledge, cognitive and cultural model as well as contextual information.3) Vital relations and their compression are the key factors for the success of conceptual integration. Through the analysis of humorous utterances in Fortress Besieged, it can be found that during the integration process, the compressions of vital relations are not one and only. One vital relation or several vital relations can be compressed according to different situations.As to the significance of the study, three aspects will be involved:firstly, by analyzing the humorous utterances collected from Fortress Besieged, the thesis, to some extent, enriches the research material for verbal humor analysis; Secondly, by employing CIT to explore the cognitive model of verbal humor, the thesis turns out to be a worthy academic practice in the theory application. It not only further provides an evidence for the investigation of humorous utterances from the perspective of CIT, but also increases research references for the extension of verbal humor study from cognitive aspects in literature works; Thirdly, by the analysis of a certain number of examples, the thesis, to a certain degree, helps people improve their understanding and use of Chinese verbal humor and promotes the efficiency and quality of verbal communication.
Keywords/Search Tags:Verbal Humor, Meaning Construction, Conceptual Integration Network, Emergent Structure, Compression of Vital Relations
PDF Full Text Request
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