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The Constructional Approach to “hand” and “leg” in English


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Omero, Natko. (2016). The Constructional Approach to “hand” and “leg” in English. Diploma Thesis. Filozofski fakultet u Zagrebu, Department of English Language and Literature. [mentor Stanojević, Mateusz-Milan].

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The human body is one of the few domains of everyday life perceived and coded by all languages of the world. According to the embodiment hypothesis, the universal physical experience is one of the bases for the way cognition and language are structured. The latter is reflected, among other things, in the fact that body part terms are universally polysemic and involved in various idioms. Such linguistic properties of lexemes denoting parts of the body are both the consequence and the proof of the metaphorical and metonymical nature of language. In this paper, I shall analyse the polysemy and idioms of hand and leg in English on the examples from the Corpus of Contemporary American English and compare them to the ways the same body part terms are coded in some unrelated languages. My presupposition, which I aim to prove, is that metaphor, metonymy and body-part polysemy and idiomaticity are linguistically universal.

Item Type: Diploma Thesis
Uncontrolled Keywords: body part terms; embodiment; metaphor; metonymy; motivation; polysemy; idioms
Subjects: English language and literature
Departments: Department of English Language and Literature
Supervisor: Stanojević, Mateusz-Milan
Date Deposited: 30 Aug 2016 12:09
Last Modified: 30 Aug 2016 12:09

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