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Semantics A course book 10

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Nguồn: Trương Văn Ánh - Trường Đại học Sài Gòn
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Semantics
Trương Văn Ánh
Trường Đại học Sài Gòn
UNIT 27: NON-LITERAL MEANING:
IDIOMS, METAPHOR, AND METONYMY
IDIOMATIC EXPRESSIONS (IDIOMS) are multi-word phrases whose overall meanings are idiosyncratic and largely unpredictable, reflecting speaker meanings that are not derivable by combining the literal senses of the individual words in each phrase according to the regular semantic rules of the language.
Ex: An eye for an eye (Tit for tat).
Where there’s a will, there’s a way.
A man is known by company he keeps.
A honey tongue, a heart of gall.




METAPHORS are conceptual (mental) operations reflected in human language that enable speakers to structure and construe abstract areas of knowledge and experience in more concrete experiential terms.
Ex: She is Thi No.
He is So Khanh.
> Hidden comparison
Used words: như, như là, as, like (simile)





Kinds of Metaphor
1. Ẩn dụ cấu trúc (Structural metaphor):
This is a kind of metaphor where a notion is expressed with a field of vocabulary of another notion.
Ex:
A. LOVE IS A JOURNEY. In this case, notion “LOVE” is expressed with a field of vocabulary of another notion of “JOURNEY”.
Look how far we’ve come.
‘Now that we’ve come this far, just hold on’ (What about now; Westlife)
We can’t turn back now.








B. ARGUMENT IS WAR In this case, notion “WAR” is expressed with a field of vocabulary of another notion of “ARGUMENT”.
Your claim are indefensible.
He attacked every weak points in my arguments.
His criticism was right on target.
If you use that strategy, he’ll wipe you out.
Khó mà thuộc hết tất cả các từ nào có thể ẩn dụ, vì thế các bạn nên nắm nguyên tắc chung (định nghĩa đã giải thích) và bám sát ngữ cảnh để hiểu ý của câu.








2. Ẩn dụ định hướng (Orientational metaphor)
Orientational metaphor is used to express the features of things.
Ex:
A. GOOD IS UP; BAD IS DOWN
Things are looking up. (Things are fine)
He hit a peak last year. (He did great last year)
My spirit rose. (I was in good spirit)








B. HAPPY IS UP; SAD IS DOWN
Cheer up. (Anyone saying cheer down?)
That boosted my spirit. (That made me happier)
I’m feeling down. (I’m sad and terrified)
I fell into a depression (I’m so freaking sad)
Định hướng giúp bạn hiểu rõ hơn khi viết các câu tiếng Anh thể hiện cảm xúc và trạng thái.








3. Ẩn dụ bản thể (Ontological metaphor)
This kind of metaphor change what we want to say into things, things with senses, abilities (like metonymy), or containers.
Ex: INFLATION IS AN ENTITY (like a bad person)
Inflation makes me sick. (Can it physically make you sick?)
We need to combat inflation (Go grab a knife and kill it)
Inflation is taking its toll on us.








A. SOUND IS A GLASS OBJECT
A line of grey cars… gives out a ghastly creak.
“Chester, I think you could do something with her” she broke out (she said something in a voice that resembles the sound made by a glass object being broken)
“Ask Myrtle” said Tom, breaking into a short shout of laughter…
And there were…, and high over the confusion a long broken wail of pain.








B. RUMORS ARE STORM
They’re going West to live for a while until it blows over.
The rumor then spread out fast.
C. FACIAL EXPRESSIONS ARE TOOLS
“Terrible place, isn’t it?’ said Tom, exchanging a frown with Dr. E.
Mrs. Wilson… looked back at us with a brilliant smile.
I tried to show by my expression that I had played no part in her past












PERSONIFICATION is a particular subtype of ontological metaphor in which an abstract entity is construed as though it were a physical object which is then further specified as being a person.
Ex: Here are some examples of personification: (1) That theory explains everything you need to know about metaphor. (2) I think that life has cheated me out of any hope of happiness. (3) Cancer finally caught up with him.







ZOOMORPHY







METONYMY is a kind of non-literal language in which one entity is used to refer to another entity that is associated with it in some way. In other words, metonymic concepts ‘allow us to conceptualize one thing by means of its relation to something else’ (LJ 1980: 39).
Ex: The following example of metonymy is frequently cited in the literature to illustrate this concept:
The ham sandwich in the next booth is waiting for his bill.
He saw the sail in the distance.






This unit has examined several kinds of non-literal or figurative language and has investigated the extent to which it might be structured in some way. Our survey has shown that, although non-literal language is often thought of as essentially random and idiosyncratic, in reality it tends to be more systematically organized than has usually been recognized. In spite of their apparent idiosyncratic nature, for example, many idiomatic expressions (such as My car is a lemon) probably originated as isolated metaphors which have become fixed or frozen over time. The fact that the metaphors on which they were based never became widely used in the language has led to their identification as frozen expressions.








But the language is replete with a number of different kinds of metaphorical expressions that are more elaborately entrenched in the culture and, consequently, are more highly systematic in nature. We have found ample evidence in English of numerous structural metaphors, orientational metaphors, and ontological metaphors which are by no means random, but highly structured and rule-governed. Finally, we have examined the role played by several different subtypes of metonymy in everyday language and have found, once again, that it, too, is systematic in nature.








We must now draw to a close our discussion of non-literal language, although we have barely scratched the surface of this vast topic and have glossed over some aspects of it that are too complex to pursue in an introductory text. If you are interested in reading further about non-literal language, including metaphor, metonymy, and related subjects, we encourage you to take a look at the references at the end of the book.








Idiomatic expression (idiom)
Metaphor
Personification
Metonymy






Format for Semantics Test
SGU

Speaker meaning / Sentence meaning
Referent, reference and sense
Variable reference, constant reference and co-reference
Utterance, sentence, proposition
Referring expressions
Equative sentence, Generic sentence
Predicate, degree of predicate, predicators






Stereotype, prototype
Sense properties: analytic, synthetic and contracditory sentences
Sense relations: synonymy, paraphrase, hyponymy, entailment (one-way, two-way), antonymy, ambiguity, homonymy, polysemy.
Metaphor, metonymy









Question 1: Choose the semantics terms in the box that best fit the definitions in the following sentences. Write down your answers in the chart below. Notice that there are more words in the box than needed. (2.0 marks) 10 Words








Question 2: Determine whether these statements are true or false by circling T (true) or F (false). (2.0 marks) 10 sentences.








Question 3: Provide two paraphrases for each of the following ambiguous sentences. (2.0 marks) 4 sentences








Question 4: Questions about Sense relations (synonymy, paraphrase, hyponymy, entailment (one-way, two-way), antonymy, homonymy, polysemy) (2.0 marks) 10 sentences.








Question 5: Questions about Equative sentence, Generic sentence; analytic, synthetic and contracditory sentences (2.0 marks) 10 sentences.








Speaker meaning / Sentence meaning
Referent, reference and sense
Variable reference, constant reference and co-reference
Utterance, sentence, proposition
Referring expressions
Equative sentence, Generic sentence
Predicate, degree of predicate, predicators
Sense properties: analytic, synthetic and contracditory sentences
Synonymy, paraphrase, hyponymy, entailment (one-way, two-way), antonymy, ambiguity, homonymy, polysemy, referrential versatile
Idiom, Metaphor, metonymy, simile, personification.









Question 1: Choose the semantics terms in the box that best fit the definitions in the following sentences. Write down your answers in the chart below. Notice that there are more words in the box than needed.









A reflexive predicate
2. A proposition
3. Co-reference
4. Paraphrases
5. An analytic sentence
6. Personification
7. A sentence
8. An equative sentence
9. Simile
10. Hyponyms
11. Metaphors
12. Synonymy









A. It is a direct comparison.
B. They are sentences which have the same proposition (meaning).
C. It is always true to everybody.
D. It is a string of words put together by the grammatical rules of a language.
E. They are included in superordinates.
F. It is that part of the meaning of the utterance of a declarative sentence.
G. It is used to assert the identity of the referents of two referring expressions.
H. It is considering things to have human behaviors.
I. Two or more words/phrases refer to the same referent.
J. It is a reflexive pronoun in a symmetric sentence.









1J 2 F 3 I 4 B 5 C 6 H 7 D 8 G 9 A 10 E









Question 2: Determine whether these statements are true or false by circling T (true) or F (false).
1. Some words such as “in, but, if, etc.” have sense and reference. T/F
2. Some words such as “pen, dog, car, etc.” have sense and reference.
3. A similar nuance of meaning in another language can be straightforwardly conveyed in English.
4. “John!” is an utterance.
5. “John is handsome” has a proposition.
6. “That book is angry with me” is anomalous.
7. Metaphors are mental operations reflected in human language.
8. Hyponyms are included in superordinates.
9. “The dog greeted me” is a metaphor.
10. “He is as rich as Rockerfeller” is a metaphor.









1 F 2 T 3 F 4 T 5 T 6 T 7 T 8 T 9 F 10 F









Question 3: Provide two paraphrases for each of the following ambiguous sentences.
1. They are waiting at the bank.
a/
b/
2. The long drill is boring.
a/
b/
3. They can fish.
a/
b/
4. They are flying kites.
a/
b/









1. They are waiting at the bank.
a/ They are waiting at the financial institution.
b/ They are waiting at the shore of the river
2. The long drill is boring.
a/ The long tool for drilling makes me bored.
b/ The long training exercise is boring
3. They can fish.
a/ They put fish into cans.
b/ They are able to catch fish.
4. They are flying kites.
a/ They are playing kites by letting them fly in the sky.
b/ They are kinds of toys which are flying in the sky.









Question 3: Provide two paraphrases for each of the following ambiguous sentences.
1. They are cooking crabs.
a/
b/
2. Jack loves John more than Mary.
a/
b/
3. I saw her row.
a/
b/








4. They are moving chairs.
a/
b/









1. They are cooking crabs.
a/ People are boiling/making crabs.
b/ Cooking crabs are ready for eating.
2. Jack loves John more than Mary.
a/ Jack loves John and Mary, but he loves John more.
b/ Jack and Mary love John, but Jack loves more.
3. I saw her row.
a/ I perceive her row with my eyes.
b/ I saw her when she rowed a boat.
4. They are moving chairs.
a/ People are moving chairs to some place.
b/ They are chairs which can move.








Question 4: Questions about Sense relations (synonymy, paraphrase, hyponymy, entailment (one-way, two-way), antonymy, homonymy, polysemy)









Question 4: Miscelaneous questions.
1. Give two hyponyms of HOUSE.
___________ ______________
2. Give one possible paraphrase of “She bought him a computer”.
 
3. Give two superordinates of HEAD.
___________ ______________
4. Is “My sister is an only child” anomalous? Yes/No
5. Is the pair of anotonyms “pass-fail” gradable or binary? ________









6. Is the pair of anotonyms “beautiful-ugly” gradable or binary? ________
7. Which is a homonym: date or chip? ________
8. “John was killed” entails “John died”. Is it a two-way entailment? Yes/No
9. “He borrowed Mary’s book” entails “Mary lent her book to him”. Is it a two-way entailment? Yes/No
10. Is “break” a polysemy? Yes/No









1door,window (suggested)
2He was bought a computer (suggested)
3body,agency (suggested)
4Yes
5Binary
6Gradable
7Date
8No
9Yes
10Yes









Question 5: Questions about Equative sentence, Generic sentence; analytic, synthetic and contracditory sentences









Question 5: Answer the following questions with YES or NO.
1. Is “Vung Tau is a city” an equative sentence? Y/N
2. Is “Thi No is Chi Pheo’s lover” an equative sentence? Y/N
3. Is “The ape is a mammal” a generic sentence? Y/N
4. Is “That ape loves her child very much” a generic sentence? Y/N
5. Is “Ho Chi Minh is a great revolutionary leader in Vietnam” an analytic sentence? Y/N









6. Is “Nguyen Van Y is from Nha Trang” an analytic sentence? Y/N
7. Is “Jack is right” contradictory to “ Jack is not right”? Y/N
8. Is “Jack is right” contradictory to “ Jack is wrong”? Y/N
9. Is “Hanoi is the capital of Vietnam” a synthetic sentence? Y/N
10. Is “the boy was born in Hanoi” a synthetic sentence? Y/N









1No 2Yes 3No 4Yes 5Yes 6No 7Yes 8Yes 9No 10Yes









Technical terms on semantics
Speaker meaning is what a speaker means.
Semantics is the study of meaning in language.
Sentence meaning (or word meaning) is what a sentence (or word) means.
A sentence is a string of words put together by the grammatical rules of a language.
A proposition is that part of the meaning of the utterance of a declarative sentence.
An equative sentence is used to assert the identity of the referents of two referring expressions.









A referent is an object or an entity in the real world or in the world of your imagination.
The degree of a predicate is a number indicating the number of arguments.
A generic sentence is a sentence in which some statement is made about a whole unrestricted class of individuals, as opposed to any particular individual.
Sense is the meaning of a word in a dictionary.
A thing (person) we can perceive is called a referent.
Variable reference: The same word/phrase refers to different referents.









Constant reference: One word/phrase refers to one referent.
Co-reference: Two or more words/phrases refer to the same referent.
An analytic sentence is always true to everybody.
A synthetic sentence may be true or may be wrong.
A contradiction is the opposite of an analytic sentence.
Synonyms have the same sense.
Paraphrases are sentences which have the same proposition (meaning).









Hyponyms are included in superordinates.
Synonyms are special cases of hyponyms. They are hyponyms of each other.
Antonyms are words (predicates) which have opposite meaning.
Ambiguous words or sentences have more than one meaning.
A homonym is the same word which has more than one meaning.
Two-place predicate in entailment sentences is transitive.









A word (predicator) which is between two arguments in an equative sentence is called symmetric.
A reflexive predicate is a reflexive pronoun in a symmetric sentence.
Two-place predicate in contradictory sentences is intransitive.
Idiomatic expressions (idioms) are figurative meanings of phrases or sentences.
Metaphor is an implied comparison.
Simile is a direct comparison.









Personification is considering things to have human behaviors.
Metonymy is replacing one thing with another.













GOOD LUCK!








 
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