Slovo.ru: Baltic accent

2017 Vol. 8 № 3

Conceptualisation of transfer and translation in modern linguistics

Abstract

This paper studies the vision of translation developed within structuralism, cross-cultural studies, and semiotics and compares them with the theory of cultural transfers. The authors identify key notions of each theory or school. Some of these notions — code, opposition, discretion, and border — permeate the scientific vocabulary of many linguistic schools. However, these terms easily acquire new meanings and interpretations in research works. The continuity of communication space is key to semiotic and cultural transfer approaches. The paper shows how scholars conceptualise translation and how the concept of translation transforms. The differences between the above-mentioned schools relate to the way translation is perceived; they also show which cognitive operations or procedures each linguistic paradigm identifies as priority ones. The understanding of translation corresponds to different cognitive operations — shared knowledge is important for structuralism, perspectivisation is relevant to cross-cultural studies, and blending is crucial for cultural transfer studies.

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Energy and the Ways of its Conceptualisation in Cognition: an Attempt at an Epistemological Analysis

Abstract

Thе article examines the connection between conceptualisation and transfer of knowledge in the humanities and analyses the role of these processes in the formation of conceptual and terminological framework for different types of discourse. The study draws on an analytical description of the development of the concept of energy in the Christian Orthodox discourse. The description was provided from the perspective of transferology — a new metadiscipline aimed to study the meaning-focused transformations of epistemological formations when transferred between different fields of knowledge. The author considers two types of transference — the explicit and implicit ones. In the former case, the genetic source of transferred epistemological formations — notions, concepts, terms, models, theoretical schemes, etc. — are known. In the latter case, the conceptual sources of the borrowed elements are unclear. The author addresses the need to develop a special epistemological discipline — conceptual comparative studies — aimed to analyse the ways of, and principles behind, the reality studied within discourses of various types.

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Cultural Transfer and Etymology

Abstract

This article considers the synthesis of information transference in space and time and examines the etymology of Indo-European lexis. The author pays attention to the origin of the lexis connected with the ‘bear’ semantics. The bear taboo was developing against the background of information passed on from one tradition to another and of ideas imported within cultural transfer. The analysis reveals the original Indo-European root for ‘bear’, which was tabooed across different Indo-European traditions, including in Old English. The article shows that cultural transfer explains the fact that philosophical lexis originates from handicraft terms. Cultural transfer determines the choice of lexical transferences and creates new possibilities for topical vocabularies through demonstrating different paradigms of the structural exchange of knowledge. Transferences belong to the realm of transition from the concrete to the abstract and determine the evolutionary lines of historical semantics.

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On the problem of cultural reference of proverbs (the Russian proverbs with images of clothing)

Abstract

This article explores proverbs as signs that preserve, transfer, and develop meanings rooted in the ethnic culture. The author investigates the ways cultural semantics is expressed in proverbs featuring clothing items. Another focus is the ways to refer to garment elements. Clothing items are universal realia; they form concepts, mythologemes, symbols, gauges, stereotypes, etc. in the realm of ideas about the world. These ideas are interpreted within different fields of human spiritual life, for instance, in proverbs. Proverbs featuring clothing items are a major source for understanding tastes, preferences, lifestyles, customs, and worldview of a nation. Images of garments in proverbs are a particular form of expressing the key ideas of a culture. Moreover, such images serve as condensers of the established etiquette, ethical, social, and other judgements. A cultural and linguistic analysis reveals cultural and linguistic limitations on the variability of clothing items in proverbs. The author describes cultural constants captured in the names of clothing items used in proverbs. Such constants are defined as essential for understanding the Russian mentality.

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Daniel Everett and Cultural Linguistics

Abstract

This paper deals with the views of Daniel L. Everett as exemplified in his major works Don’t Sleep, There Are Snakes and Language: The Cultural Tool. The aim of this study is to analyse the connection of these works to various schools of thought and to examine the possible link with linguistic cultural studies. Everett’s definitions of language and culture are contrasted with those of various schools in linguistics. It should be noted that Everett does not appear to use the term linguistic worldview. Yet, due to the rich empirical evidence found and set out in his books and papers, Everett effectively summarizes the views on the subject of worldview. Everett’s standpoint does not show significant differences from those of Anna Wierzbicka, or Veronika N. Teliya. At the end of this article, Everett is compared to Émile Benveniste, who — while not belonging explicitly to any school of thought — gave an exhaustive description of concepts and ideas found in contemporary linguistics.

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The Riddle as an Object of Linguistic Research

Abstract

The article considers the riddle as an object of linguistic research. Today, studying riddles remains relevant, since they have not been examined from the perspective of cultural linguistics. The cultural meanings preserved in traditional riddles across nations have not been identified and described. However, filling this gap requires an analysis of the most prominent research works I the field. The most fundamental works on the structure, semantics, and pragmatics of riddles are considered in this article. The author reviews the ideas of Russian and international researchers on different aspects of riddle studies within the two major approaches — the philological and ethnolinguistic ones. The article stresses the contribution made by the compilers of collections of riddles to riddle studies. Different ways to organize collections of riddles are described in the case of Russian and English editions. The article identifies the ideas both common and unique to individual riddle researchers and summarizes their findings. The author lays groundwork for further research on riddles from the perspective of linguistics, in particular, cultural linguistics.

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