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Seven Types of Meaning

Seven Types of Meaning

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Published by fekhardji mohamed
under semantics; seven types of meaning, based on geoffrey leech's book.
under semantics; seven types of meaning, based on geoffrey leech's book.

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Published by: fekhardji mohamed on Mar 22, 2011
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08/15/2013

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Seen pes o meani ng
Semantics is a study of the meaning of lexical items and other parts of language. There are seven types of meaning in Semantics; conceptual,connotative, stylistic, affective, reflected, collocative and thematic meaning.This study focuses on only two of the types of meaning: conceptual meaningand connotative meaning.
1/Conceptual meaning
Conceptual meaning means logical, cognitive, or denotative content. It isbased on two structural principles, which arecontractivenessand constituentstructures(in a scientific way). It is usually derived from definitions we find indictionaries and the appearance of these lexical items. We give these lexicalitems features (constituent structures) and eliminate other features whichare not present (contractiveness structures).- The conceptual meaning of a language can be studied in terms of 
contrastive feature,
depends on the given lexical field
,
so that (forexample) the meaning of the word
woman
could be specified as
(+ human, +adult,- male),
as distinct from,
man
, which could be defined
(+ human, +adult,+ male),
man is incompatible with woman because of the distinctfeature which is (male feature)- The second principle, that of structure, is the principle by which largerlinguistic units are built up out of smaller units, (for example) in thissentence:
{[(All) (men)] [(are)] [(mortal)]}
 
(We are able to analyze the sentence syntactically into a its constituentsparts)The semantic representation of conceptual meaning is governed by twolinguistic principles: that of contrast and that of arrangement. Theseprinciples are comparable to the paradigmatic and syntagmatic relationsobserved in phonological and syntactic analyses.
2/Associative meaning
The associative meaning of an expression has to do with individual mentalunderstandings of the speaker. They, in turn, can be broken up into six sub-types:connotative, collocative, social, affective, reflected and thematic
 
A/ Connotative meaning
 
“The communicative value an expression has by virtue of what it refers to” (Leech 1981: 12).
Connotation is the real-world value a speaker associates with an expression.In other words, it is the meaning above the conceptual meaning and it mayvary according to culture, background or society. Thus, connotative meaningcan be subjective or unstable. It depends very much on how an individual orsociety perceives a word. It is the association that we make in our mind of what these lexical items represent. (For example), In English, the word
dog
may have the connotation
loyalty 
, apart from its referential meaning.When we analyze word meanings we should distinguish two separateconcepts called denotative and connotative meaning; “
sea
” denotes a largebody of water but connotes a sense of danger, instability…One aspect concerning the connotative meaning is the
 
social meaning
(sometimes termed stylistic meaning)
which varies between age-groups, sex,social class and cultures. Dialect can be a good example.It is a piece of language that conveys about the social circumstances of itsuse. Pavement is used in British English and sidewalk in American English.Residence is formal and home is casual.
C/ Affective meaning
Is what is communicated of the feeling or attitude of the speaker/writertoward what is referred to? (For example), by scaling our remarks accordingto politeness with the object of getting people to be quiet, we might sayeither:
1/ I’m terribly sorry to interrupt, but I wonder if you would be so kind as to loweryou voices a little2/ will you belt up
Factors such as intonation and voice-timber (tone of voice) are also importanthere
. And there are elements of language such as interjections, like (Aha! Yippee!),Whose main function is to express emotions.
D/ Reflected meaning
What is communicated through association with another sense of the sameexpression. So it is the meaning that arises in cases of multiple conceptualmeaning, when one sense of a word forms part of our response to anothersense.In the church service, the synonymous expression (the comforter), it sounds
 
warm ‘comforting’ but in the religious context it means the strengthener orsupporter. i.e sense of the word seems to ‘rub off ’ on another sense.
E/ Collocative meaning
Collocative meaning is the associated meaning a word acquires in line withthe meaning of words which tend to co-occur with it. Both pretty andhandsome mean good-looking but they differ in collocative meaning. Prettyoften co-occurs with girl, woman, flower, skirt, etc. Handsome oftencollocates with boy, man, car, overcoat, etc.
See (green ideas sleep furiously) to more understand the meaning of collocation.
2/Thematic meaning
It concerns itself with how the order of words spoken affects the meaningthat is entailed.If we say:1/ I will do it tomorrow. In a neutral way.2/ tomorrow, I will do it. Showing a promise.4/ Mrs. Bessi Smith donated the first prize.5/ The first prize was donated by Mrs. Bessi Smith.Certainly these have different communicative value: the active sentenceseems to answer ‘
what did Mrs. Bessi Smith donate?
’, while the passivesentence seems to answer ‘
who donated the first prize
’.
Furthermore…
Antonymy
(A is the opposite of B; e.g. cold is the opposite of warm)
Homonym.
Two concepts, A and B, are expressed by the same symbol. Ex-ample: Both a financial institution and a edge of a river are expressed by theword bank (the word has two senses).
Hyponymous relationships
("is a" relation or hyponym-hyperonym),generic relation, genus-species relation: a hierarchical subordinate relation.(A is kind of B; A is subordinate to B; A is narrower than B; B is broader thanA). The "is a" relation denotes what class an object is a member of. Forexample, "CAR - is a - VEHICLE" and "CHICKEN - is a - BIRD". It can bethought of as being a shorthand for "is a type of". When all the relationshipsin a system are "is a", is the system a taxonomy. The "generic of" optionallows you to indicate all the particular types (species, hyponyms) of aconcept. The "specific of" option al-lows you to indicate the common genus(hypernym) of all the particular types.

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