Czech and English Idioms of Body Parts: A View From Cognitive Semantics

Bilkova, Ilona (2000) Czech and English Idioms of Body Parts: A View From Cognitive Semantics. MPhil(R) thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

This thesis has analysed Czech and English idioms containing parts of the human body in order to support the hypothesis that these expressions are motivated by conceptual structures, such as general conventional knowledge and conceptual metaphors and metonymies. The conceptual theory developed mainly by George Lakoff has been used in order to find whether the figurative meaning of idioms containing body parts is predictable from the meanings of their constituent parts. The analysis presented in this study has shown that cognitive strategies are at work when Czech- and English-language speakers infer the figurative meaning of idioms containing parts of the human body. Also, the fact that during the process of inference of meaning speakers activate the key words in idioms suggests that the overall figurative meaning of many idioms is predictable from the meanings of their constituent parts. It has also been shown that there is a considerable degree of correspondence between Czech and English in that there are idiomatic expressions in both languages which share their figurative meaning as well as the same underlying conceptual strategies. This finding is also based on the likelihood of body metaphors in both languages. Some implications which these findings raise are discussed and related to second-language teaching and learning.

Item Type: Thesis (MPhil(R))
Qualification Level: Masters
Additional Information: Adviser: Christian J Kay
Keywords: Linguistics
Date of Award: 2000
Depositing User: Enlighten Team
Unique ID: glathesis:2000-76017
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 19 Nov 2019 17:06
Last Modified: 19 Nov 2019 17:06
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/76017

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