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230063 The Cognitive Study of Language (BS) (WiSe 2018/2019)

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"Cognitive Linguistics [...] is an approach to language that is based on our experience of the world and the way we perceive and conceptualize it." (Ungerer/Schmid 2006: x). This seminar focuses on the most recent developments in the framework of the functional study of language. The cognitive linguistics movement has spawned a large variety of approaches to explain a broad range of grammatical phenomena. According to the most detailed approach to date, the theory of cognitive grammar by Langacker, cognitive linguistics maintains that modules traditionally considered separate are in fact polar ends of a continuum, e.g. the continuum from lexical to grammatical morphemes. In this class we will start at the morpheme level and move upwards to fundamental grammatical categories like nouns and verbs. Cognitive linguistics redefines these categories as units which are essentially symbolic in nature. This means that perceptual principles such as proximity and continuation influence grammatical phenomena such as number for nouns or tense and aspect for verbs. We will investigate how these perceptual principles shape basic word order in English, how transitivity of verbs can be made plausible and what the real meaning of active vs. passive is. Finally, we want to look at how this perspective on language contrasts with competing theories, especially within the more traditional, descriptive framework. Course requirements will be reading assignments of relevant material provided at the beginning of the course as well as presentations on different topics.


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Modul Veranstaltung Leistungen  
23-ANG-M-AngHM1 Hauptmodul 1: The English Language and the Processes of Culture HM 1.1 The English Language in Context Studienleistung
23-ANG-M-AngHM1_IAS Language and the Processes of Culture The English Language in Context Studienleistung
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