rss_2.0Linguistics and Semiotics FeedSciendo RSS Feed for Linguistics and Semiotics and Semiotics Feed myself, the students and the language: Brazilian teachers’ attitudes towards ELF and the diversity of English<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>A great amount of the findings in ELF research has not yet reached the regular practitioner in different parts of the world. Despite the fact that ELF research has been solidly advancing, very little has been found out about teachers’ questioning their role in the context of ELF, the global position of English, their role in possibly reproducing or resisting discourses of dominance, inequalities, hegemony, among others. This paper investigates teachers’ attitudes towards ELF, and what influences them, with pre- and in-service teachers in Brazil, the former from a public university and the latter from a prestigious language institute located in Salvador, the capital city of Bahia, Brazil. The findings have shown that regardless of the differences in experience and background knowledge, both groups have demonstrated a very positive attitude towards ELF, although many questions and doubts were brought up when it came to conceiving the teaching of ELF-oriented classes on a regular basis. At a broader level, both groups highlighted the link between an ELF-oriented pedagogy and emancipation and open-mindedness, a way of liberating the teachers from the straightjacket of traditional ELT.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2019-02-23T00:00:00.000+00:00Multimodal Patterns in Cognition and Communication as a Radial Category<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Narrative is a complex and elusive category of cognition, culture, communication and language. An attempt has been made in this article with a large enough theoretical scope to consider the possibility of treating narrative as a radial category. To this end, the definition and characterisation of radiality is provided together with explanation of what it might mean to apply this term to the complex language-discourse unit of narrative. The prototype of this category involves features, functions, and ICMs. It has multiple representations with only family resemblance, involves more obvious exemplars and variable abstract knowledge structures. In particular, section one looks at the radiality question and what it might mean to think of the meaning of narrative in general. Section two focuses on centrality. Sections three to five deal with schematic representations of narrative and provide examples of extending the most subsuming schema of the Action Chain Model from cognitive linguistics and Labov’s Narrative Schema to various other types of conversational narrative, children’s dramatic plays, tactical narratives, story rounds, jokes, poems, current news articles on the Internet, images, and advertisements.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-03-13T00:00:00.000+00:00To Translate, or Not to Translate: A Cognitive Linguistic Analysis of Selected English and Polish Proverbs<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Proverbs are often said to be part and parcel of the cultural, social, and cognitive heritage of a given linguistic community. This very specific nature of proverbs poses a challenge for any contrastive paremiological study which looks for “equivalents” in the target language. Especially difficult cases which escape systematic analysis are novel modifications of well-established traditional proverbs. To illustrate this, consider a proverb such as The <italic>early bird gets the worm</italic>. Based on this traditional saying, we have nowadays a number of modifications such as The <italic>early bird gets the worm, but the late one gets the pizza</italic> or <italic>The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese</italic>. Also, a Polish original saying such as <italic>Kto rano wstaje, temu Pan Bóg daje</italic>, lit. “God provides to those who rise early”, now has a number of variants, including <italic>Kto rano wstaje, ten idzie po bułki</italic> (lit. “Those who rise early go to a shop to buy rolls”) or <italic>Kto rano wstaje, ten jest niewyspany</italic> (lit. “Those who rise early are sleepy”). One thing is certain: any attempt to develop a viable contrastive paremiological analysis can hardly ignore the complex and intricate relations between the cognitive, linguistic, and cultural aspects of proverbs compared. What is needed is a multifaceted account of such structures. A translation model which seems to be perfectly suited for this purpose is Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk’s theory of <italic>reconceptualization</italic> (2010). Using as a point of departure Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk’s assertion that that the translation of a proverb from a source language (SL) to a target language (TL) entails “a number of cycles of reconceptualization of the original SL message, expressed eventually in the TL” (2010: 107), we will offer a re-conceptualization-based account of the shift in meaning involving traditional proverbs and their jocular transformations.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-03-13T00:00:00.000+00:00A Cognitive Grammar Perspective on Temporal Conceptualization in SLA<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This article shows how cognitive grammar and cognitive linguistics theory offer a fruitful paradigm within which the process of second language acquisition can be examined. The aim is to describe and examine the benefit of using notions developed within the CG and CL frameworks to the study of crosslinguistic influence, especially conceptual transfer, in multilinguals. In recent years, the growth of empirical research concerning the contribution of cognitive-inspired theories to the study of second language acquisition and multilingualism has grown extensively. This article illustrates the possible contribution of CL to SLA by focusing on one particular line of inquiry: that of construal. Specifically, it examines how the notions developed within cognitive grammar theory can be useful tools for the analysis and comparison of conceptualization patterns of events, thus giving rise to transfer effects stemming from the way a person construes and conceptualizes events. The starting hypothesis is that conceptual transfer effects in the use of the target grammar, in this case the transfer effects in the TIME domain, may originate from the conceptualization patterns that the multilingual has acquired as a speaker of another L1. Previous transfer research has obtained evidence to suggest that patterns of L1 conceptualizations may be transferred into learners’ L2 through patterns that are similar to their L1. The utilization of central tools within cognitive grammar in order to unmask conceptual differences represents an important contribution to the state of the art of crosslinguistic influence research.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-03-13T00:00:00.000+00:00The relationship between speech and gestures in persons with aphasia: Evidence from the Czech perspective<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>In my research, I replicate two fundamental hypotheses established by Jakob et al. (2011): 1) Persons with aphasia (PWA) produce more gestures than healthy control persons (HCP) during interpretation of texts; 2) The more speech-restricted a person with aphasia is, the more gestures he/she produces during the interpretation of a text.</p> <p>I work with 6 persons with diagnosed aphasia and 10 healthy control persons (or persons with no evident speech deficiency). From a methodological point of view, I point out the necessity to include a description of non-verbal elements in language description and, at the same time, to describe the data of the damage in persons with aphasia. I also introduce some possible perspectives for exploring the categories and the extent of speech damage in persons with aphasia and various ways in which they compensate for verbal deficiency with the aid of gestures. From the viewpoint of data processing methods, on the one hand, I explore the speech parameters: among others, quantity of words, and, on the other hand, the gesture parameters: quantity of gestures, diversity of gestures, etc.</p> <p>I find that Czech aphasic persons do use gestures to support their restricted verbal production and to substitute for verbal production where they do not have access to any given lexical items. My data also correlate with the general assumptions on speech production when considering different types of aphasia.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00Gender identities in e-shop perfume descriptions<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Perfume descriptions serve as an important persuasive tool in fragrance advertising. Scents traditionally elude clear verbal description, yet perfumes are nowadays frequently sold online, with no direct olfactory experience on the part of the consumer at the point of purchase. The products are thus often represented by metaphorical means depicting a desirable experience or portraying attractive identities of wearers, including stereotypical images of men and women. This article analyses 80 e-shop fragrance descriptions equally divided among adverts targeted at males and females. The sample texts were collected randomly from British and American e-shops, with the primary research objective to determine how male and female identities are reflected in these descriptions. The method of discourse analysis was applied and the AntConc 3.4.4 toolkit was used to calculate the frequency of words and their collocations. It was found that current female perfume descriptions on e-shops generally suppress gender stereotypes quite successfully, while gender stereotyping is more prominent in male perfume descriptions. The possible causes as well as ramifications of this disparity are also discussed.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00Sentence-structure errors of machine translation into Slovak<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The study identifies, classifies and analyses errors in machine translation (MT) outputs of journalistic texts from English into Slovak, using error analysis. The research results presented in the study are pioneering, since the issue of machine translation – with its strong interdisciplinary character and novelty – has not yet been studied in the Slovak academic environment. The evaluation of the errors is based on a framework for classification of MT errors devised by Vaňko, which was arranged for the Slovak language. The study discusses and explains the issues of sentence structure, including predicativeness, syntactic-semantic correlativeness, and a modal and communication sentence framework. We discovered that the majority of the errors are related to the categories of agreement, word order and nominal morpho-syntax. This fact clearly correlates with features of journalistic texts, in which nominal structures and nouns in all realizations are used to a great extent. Moreover, there are some serious differences between the languages which limit and affect the quality of translation.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00Modalized speech acts in a spoken learner corpus: The case of and<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This paper examines the use of the modal auxiliaries <italic>can</italic> and <italic>could</italic> in speech acts produced by university students of English. Its aim is to explore syntactic patterns, semantic features and pragmatic functions of utterances containing <italic>can</italic>/<italic>could</italic> in <italic>Corpus of Czech Students’ Spoken English</italic>. Taking account of pragmatic factors, including broader linguistic and extralinguistic context, the analysis attempts to identify the illocutionary forces conveyed by the modalized speech acts excerpted from the corpus dialogues. The findings indicate that the modal verbs are commonly employed as a modifying device in indirect speech acts, particularly in conventionalized directives. As for their frequency of occurrence, <italic>can</italic> proves to be a widely used modal auxiliary in spoken learner discourse, whereas the more remote <italic>could</italic> appears in the corpus much less frequently in that it is associated with a higher degree of diffidence.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00Stance complement clauses controlled by verbs in academic research papers<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This paper explores stance complement clauses in the genre of academic discourse, analysing stance complement clauses controlled by verbs in economics research articles written in English by non-native writers. Following Biber’s taxonomy (2006) of common lexico-grammatical features used for stance analyses, the results of the study show that epistemic verbs of certainty and likelihood are an important means of communicating knowledge in this genre and thus, form an inseparable part of academic research writing. Moreover, the study seeks to analyse the contrast between <italic>stance to-infinitives</italic> and <italic>stance that-clauses</italic> in the studied corpus. While <italic>stance that-clauses</italic> relate mainly to the category of certainty; on the contrary, <italic>stance to-infinitive clauses</italic> are consciously or subconsciously chosen to lessen the risk of a face-threatening act and typically refer to writers’ sensory experience (e.g. verbs such as <italic>seem</italic>, <italic>appear</italic>, etc.). The findings suggest that research papers from the field of economics demonstrate a clear preference for factive verbs over non-factive verbs.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00The skill of natural interpreting in a trilingual child<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The present work seeks to contribute to the fields of translation and bilingual acquisition focusing on the particular case of natural translation/interpreting of a single Slovak/English/German balanced trilingual child between 0;03 and 8;01 years. Natural interpreting is a strategy used by bilinguals whereby a message expressed in one language (source language = SL) is reproduced in another (target language = TL). Our study is based on two premises: 1. Translation in a bilingual child is an innate skill which can be acquired without formal training and is developed through guidance and practice (Harris, 1978); and 2. Natural interpreting can occur within different combinations of languages. We address the issue of bilingual competence and in particular the relationship that exists between linguistic competence and performance in the process of interpretation activity in the bilingual child. The first aim of the study is to reveal the social-academic context and the main sources of linguistic input, which had an important effect on the speech development of the child. The second aim of the study is to show that a trilingual child was able to become a sophisticated interpreter as she gradually moved through stages of pre-translation, autotranslation and transduction to more complex forms of interpretation (Harris and Sherwood, 1978; Harris, 1976 and 1978). The third aim of the study is to document the types of errors produced by the child and through error analysis and statistical data reveal whether these errors may hinder the communication of accurate meaning in the TL. The translation competence of the bilingual child is analysed via different types of spontaneous, elicited and experimental data gathered from the child’s longitudinal production recorded by the researcher in diary annotations, audio recordings and video recordings. Examples of the child’s interpretations presented in this paper are transcribed in the CHAT format. The results of our study demonstrate that a trilingual child acquiring three languages in a bilingual community with the bilingual-monolingual interaction strategy used by parents at home can become a competent interpreter by the age of 8;01 years and deliver messages quite accurately in the TL regardless of the directionality of interpretation. The results of error analysis show that the type of errors produced by the child in the process of interpretation are mainly morphological and occasionally syntactic or intrusion errors, which do not lead to misinterpretation of the meaning of original message in the TL.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00Word-Initial Prevocalic [H-] in Middle English<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The present contribution discusses the phonological reality of initial fricative <italic>h-</italic> in words of Germanic and French origin in dialectally identified 106 texts from the <italic>Innsbruck Corpus of Middle English Prose</italic> (Markus 2008), with the focus on native words where initial <italic>h-</italic> is frequently mute, as confirmed by (a) <italic>h</italic>-less spellings like <italic>ouse</italic> for <italic>house</italic> or especially (b) the use of the article <italic>an</italic> before <italic>h</italic>-nouns. In the early texts a phrase like <italic>an house</italic> may testify to the survival of the historical determiner (OE <italic>ān</italic>) put before both initial vowels and consonants, but in later texts this position may indicate mute initial <italic>h-</italic> in the following noun (or in an adjective before a noun). The paper offers numerical data concerning such distributions in particular <italic>Corpus</italic> texts as well as analogous data referring to the adjectives MIN and THIN (later on <italic>my</italic> and <italic>thy</italic>), where the final nasal consonant was lost when used in the function of an attribute. Consequently, this development led to the rise of a set of possessive adjectives with a syntactic, not phonological, distribution The data from the <italic>Innsbruck Corpus</italic> seem to indicate that an early loss of initial prevocalic <italic>h-</italic> in Middle English words of Germanic origin took place in particular texts rather than in texts from the whole region. The evidence from the Corpus shows that the implementation of the contemporary distribution, i.e., <italic>a</italic> before consonants and <italic>an</italic> before vowels, had a partly regional character, its first traces coming from as early as the 13<sup>th</sup> century.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00The method of educational programs localization under internationalization of academic environment<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>In the context of the internationalization of education the need for localization and translation of educational programs into foreign languages with the aim of attracting foreign students is increasing. Consequently, new methods and resources are required to optimize educational process. However, currently there are not enough localized programs translated into English and localized for the new contingent of university students although localized programs are urgently needed as they give foreign students the opportunity to choose the most suitable direction for study. The purpose of the proposed research is localization as a linguistic and cultural adaptation of digital content to the requirements of the foreign market and translation into English the educational program “Software Engineering” for students of telecommunications specialties taking into account both technical and didactic terminology. To speed up the translation the glossary is compiled using online and offline services. As a result, the program “Software Engineering”, designed for foreign students, is localized, translated and adapted. Thus, a more “friendly” environment for entering the educational process in the new intercultural conditions is created. This practice becomes an integral part of the lecturers’ activities. On the other hand, students themselves can be involved in content creation and research. The design of localization should be directed from simple to complex, taking into account a certain balance between depth and composition of research. In general, the presentation of localized programs at the international level has a number of advantages for universities, including economic ones, for example, increasing the income invested in equipping the educational process.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00Towards Investigation of Instructional “Hiccups” of ELT Fraternity in EFL classroom<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This paper aims to investigate and understand the causes of instructional “hiccups” of English language teachers at private schools in Pakistan. The questionnaire is the main tool for data collection among English language teachers who were teaching at the secondary level. Due to specific selection criteria, purposive sampling was employed among participants of the study. The findings reveal that English language teachers in private schools at the elementary level were facing teaching difficulties while teaching English textbook courses.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00The perceptions of intermediate EFL learners to the lexical instructional intervention<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This study investigated the perceptions of high school EFL learners to the lexical instructional approach intervention in the contexts of learning vocabulary and grammar. Besides, an attempt was made to explore what difficulties the participants encountered during the experimentation. The data collected through the questionnaire were analyzed using a one-sample t-test, and the results showed that the estimated sample perception mean score was significantly higher than the hypothesized population perception mean score. This implies that EFL learners had positive perceptions towards the lexical instructional approach in the contexts of learning vocabulary and grammar. The data collected through interviews were analyzed qualitatively and the findings showed that students enjoyed and were interested in learning vocabulary and grammar through the lexical instructional approach. Students realized the importance of lexical chunks in learning vocabulary and grammar. In this regard, the interview results corroborated the results obtained from the questionnaire. Students encountered difficulties like lack of lexical awareness, lack of clear and adequate instructions on some activities, the lack of deliberate attention from some students during discussions, the lack of making some activities more interactive and engaging, and some classroom managerial problems. Finally, it was recommended that EFL teachers at high school should design their lexical approach-based activities systematically by considering their students’ interests, feelings, perceptions, levels, norms, cultures, and psychological setups.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00Linguistic complexity of lecturers’ class register and its relationship to their personality traits<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Many research studies indicated a correlation between classroom behaviour and the language of the instructors and learners. The inter-language that the teachers prefer to use in the class differs from the natural, daily life conversations in linguistic terms. It is characterized by more simplistic, repetitive, carefully selected language, or “classroom register”. The paper discusses a „foreign language classroom register” as a specific linguistic subsystem which is operated both by the rules of linguistic simplification and by constraints imposed by the specific social (school) setting. The standard language used in a classroom communication with a high ratio of short basic and coordinate sentences, more universal constructions, such as base case nominal phrases and active present indicative verb phrases, the limited reduction in morphological complexity as a result of a preference for a simple sentence structure. The research study examines a linguistic complexity of the teacher talk with focus on reductions, modifications, and simplifications. It also studies the personal attitudes of lecturers toward school discourse and the relation between teachers´ personality and a language complexity of their language.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00Culinaronyms in formatting linguocultural competence in teaching Russian as a foreign language<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Linguocultural approach is the new teaching direction in teaching Russian as a foreign language (RFL). Based on this approach, students are aimed to form a linguocultural competence. Studying scientific research show that there is a lot of linguistic units that are suitable to help students in forming their linguocultural competence. The purpose of the research is to apply the topic “Russian culinaronyms” (known as the name of Russian food) in the formation of the linguocultural competence of Vietnamese students who are learning Russian as a foreign language. The research was conducted by surveying and interviewing 26 Russian teachers in Vietnam by verifying the applicability of theory and practice of the topic “Russian culinaronyms”. The research results show that the teachers think that the application of this food topic in the formation of their linguocultural competence is appropriate with high survey results. Furthermore, it reveals the linguistic and cultural dimensions from Russian culinaronyms which can be used to form a linguocultural competence for Vietnamese students. The topic “Russian culinaronyms” can be applied in extracurricular sessions for language specialized students.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00The temporary return to the homeland in Michael Ondaatje’s<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This study concentrates on memory in Michael Ondaatje’s <italic>Running in the Family</italic> because it is the foundation for the whole novel. Ondaatje’s attempt creates a relationship with the past by performing all acts of the journey in physical and imaginary performances of listening and reproducing. His attempt depends on his own memory; however, his memory does not coincide with stories he has heard, and the historical documents tend to conflict with each other. In the interior of his travels, Ondaatje reveals the extent of his isolation and the impact of his displacement. As he narrates the stories, he faces difficulties in distinguishing between rumors and lies, in organizing fragments of knowledge, and in explaining challenges tied to his methods of cultural revival. These challenges are met in the non-linear and sometimes stunning text plans which he uses.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00Portfolios within the preschool environment<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The academic community has been discussing the options for using portfolios within the education process for a number of years. Studies looking at this phenomenon often focus on a constructivist concept of portfolios where the child is the main agent in creating the document (Sitz &amp; Bartholomew, 2008; Smith et al., 2003). The alternative to this is the positivist concept of the portfolio. The submitted research study is focused on the use of portfolios specifically within the preschool environment. The research’s main objective was to understand how children’s portfolios are used within the education process in preschools and present the children’s perspective on their own portfolios. Adopting a qualitatively-focused research design, the research methods used were content analysis of portfolios, and interviews with children on their document. The research findings show that within the preschool environment, portfolios are used in a number of ways. These ways are directly linked to the teacher’s belief on the importance of portfolios for preschool-age children. A child’s portfolio can be a concept, a tool, a method or also a means. The results also present the children’s original perspective on their own portfolios. This study is based on a part of my completed rigorosum thesis (Trávníčková, 2019).</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00Traditional Segregation: Encoded Language as Powerful Tool. Insights from Ụmụakpo-Lejja chant<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Language becomes a tool for power and segregation when it functions as a social divider among individuals. Language creates a division between the educated and uneducated, an indigene and non-indigene of a place; an initiate and uninitiated member of a sect. Focusing on the opposition between expressions and their meanings, this study examines Ụmụakpo-Lejja <italic>Okǝti Ọmaba</italic> chant, which is a heroic and masculine performance that takes place in the <italic>Okǝti</italic> (masking enclosure of the deity) of <italic>Umuakpo</italic> village square in Lejja town of Enugu State, Nigeria. The mystified language promotes discrimination among initiates, non-initiates, and women. <italic>Ọmaba</italic> is a popular fertility Deity among the Nsukka-Igbo extraction and <italic>Egara Ọmaba</italic> (<italic>Ọmaba</italic> chant) generally applies to the various chants performed to honour the deity during its periodical stay on earth. Using Schleiermacher’s Literary Hermeneutics Approach of the methodical practice of interpretation, the metaphorical language of the performance is interpreted to reveal the thoughts and the ideology behind the performance in totality. Among the Findings is that the textual language of Ụmụakpo-Lejja <italic>Okǝti Ọmaba</italic> chant is almost impossible without authorial and member’s interpretation and therefore, they are capable of initiating discriminatory perception of a non-initiate as a weakling or a woman.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-06-17T00:00:00.000+00:00en-us-1