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Types and sources of connotation.


Connotation from Lat. Con =together + notare = mean is meaning which accompanies another meaning, the denotation of a word, i.e. its logical, or cognitive m-g. Connotation is impossible without denotation though the reverse is not necessarily true. Connotation coexist with denotation and at the same time is distinct from it in the quality of information that it adds to it.

C. is association that comes along with a particular word. C. relates not to a words actual m-g, or denotation, but rather the ideas or qualities that are implied by the word. Denotation is the purely logical, conceptual m-g of a word, without the feelings or suggestions that the word may imply.

E.g. big, huge little,tiny

Animal, beast

These words have different overtones of m-g. Not every word possesses con-n. there are many neutral words that dont possess synonyms.

C. chiefly renders the emotive m-g

Arnold speaks of 4 main types of connotation:

-emotive ( expresses feelings and emotions)- sweaty, honey, darling;daddy,mummy,granny

-evaluative (reasoning of the mind, expresses (dis)approval)- obstinate vs. stubborn, miserly vs. thrifty; A clique(small group of ppl) vs. group (a set of ppl) is my example

-expressive (the degree of intensity)-huge vs. big, grab vs. take; adore vs. love

-stylistic- (shows the stylistic register of a word) , , ; purloin, steal, pinch.

Pragmatic con-n expresses the attitude of the lang. community to some phenomenon, can change with time. Pragmatic con-ns are related to political correctness (the black, the negroes).

Its important to differentiate between language and textual con-ns.

Lang. connotations are meanings that are registered in dictionaries and are shared by all the users of the lang. E.g. expire- neutral when referring to the use of medications. But in the m-ng to die its high-flown and respectful. ()

Textual con-ns are usually unique. They can appear intentionally or can be unforeseen by the speaker thats why usage of t.c. is always foregrounded.

The main sources of l-ge connotation: Textual con-ns exist within a particular text, they are the result of interaction between a complex l-ge form, content, and background information which may involved through the interplay of formal and semantic elements making up a text.

1. Synonymical relations

Parent-father-daddy ; --

Commence- begin- go ahead


2. Relations between the direct and the figurative m-g

e.g. dont be such a pig, , -

3. Relations of formal similarity

E.g. crash, dash, splash

4. Restriction: semantically to terminology, e.g cyclotron cant be used in everyday communication.

Terms can produce a stylistic effect by being accumulated. A term produces a marked stylistic effect when its used outside its usual sphere.

The same 4 sources of l-ge connotation occur in literary texts, in rhetorical debate and other kinds of discourse. Besides textual connotations have much more vary sources.

  • Repetition of words, structures emphatic and effective
  • Intended ambiguity
  • Defeated expectancy


Date: 2016-01-14; view: 5759

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