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UC 00902

:
MEANING
IN COMMUNICATION
CONTEXT

LESSON 2:
Study of Meaning

WHAT IS SEMANTICS?

Semantics is the scientific study of meaning
communicated through language.
 Semantics is the study of the relation between
form and meaning
Semantics is the study of the relationships
between signs and symbols and what they
represent.


WHAT IS SEMANTICS?

Semantics is the branch of linguistics that
deals with the study of meaning, changes
in meaning, and the principles that govern
the relationship between sentences or
words and their meanings.

WHAT IS SEMANTICS?

 An understanding of semantics is
essential to the study of language
acquisition (how language users acquire a
sense of meaning, as speakers and
writers, listeners and readers).
 It is also essential to the study of
language change (how meanings alter
over time).
WHAT IS SEMANTICS?

 It is important for understanding language in
social contexts, as these are likely to affect
meaning, and for understanding varieties of
language and effects of style.
 The study of semantics includes the study of
how meaning is constructed, interpreted,
clarified, obscured, illustrated, simplified,
negotiated, contradicted, and paraphrased.

Some important areas of semantic theory or related
subjects include these:
 Symbol and referent
 Conceptions of meaning
 Words and lexemes
 Denotation, connotation, implication
 Pragmatics
 Ambiguity
 Metaphor, simile and symbol
 Semantic fields
 Synonym, antonym and hyponym
 Collocation, fixed expression and idiom
 Semantic change and etymology
 Polysemy
 Homonymy, homophones and homographs
 Lexicology and lexicography
 Thesauruses, libraries and Web portals
 Epistemology
 Colour
In linguistics, semantics is the subfield that is
devoted to the study of meaning, as borne on the
syntactic levels of words, phrases, sentences,
and sometimes larger units of discourse,
generically referred to as texts.

To understand language we need to know the
meaning of words and the morphemes that
compose them. We also must know how the
meanings of words combine into phrases and
sentence meanings. Finally, we must consider
context when determining meaning.

 Phonetics studies the
physical side of linguistic
utterances—the
articulation and perception
of speech sounds
(articulatory, acoustic and
auditory).
 How to make the sound of
/k/ , /g/, /b/, /p/
 Phonology is the study of
the sound patterns of human
language.
 How the sound of /b/ and /p/
make a difference in
English [bad] and [pad],
 How the sound of /p/ and
/d/ make a difference in
Malay [apa] and [ada],
[katak] and [kotak]

 Morphology is the study of
the structure of words and
the smallest meaning
bearing units and how they
combine into words.
 Malay
Mengasihi
meN + kasih + I
Termakan (ter+makan)
meN,teR,di dll
 English
apples (apple + s)
writes (write + s)

 Syntax is the study of the
formation of sentences, how
words are combined to larger
units than words, to phrases
and sentences that are well-
formed strings in a given
language
 Malay:
Ayam makan jagung
Jagung makan ayam
Jagung dimakan ayam
 English: A letter written by
John
 John writes letter

 Semantic is the study of
the linguistic meaning of
morphemes, words,
phrases, and sentences
 English:This room is hot.
 It is taking about the high
temperature in the room


 Pragmatics is the study of
how context affects
meaning.
 English: This room is hot
 In other words:
-please open the windows
-please on the fan
-who switch off the air-con?

JOURNAL 2
 2 examples of phonological differences in Malay
and English
 2 example of morphological differences in Malay
and English
 2 example of syntax differences in Malay and
English
 2 example of semantic differences in Malay and
English
 2 example of pragmatic differences in Malay and
English