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Linguistica Silesiana, vol. 31 - ebook/pdf
Linguistica Silesiana, vol. 31 - ebook/pdf
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Scope as a cognitive in tense analysis
On pragmatic and cognitive processes in meaning variation
The emergence of subordinate clauses in Old English from paratactically conjoined structures
The influence of English on the Polish language of Internet message boards: investigating the role of individual differences and the context

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POLSKA AKADEMIA NAUK ODDZIAŁ W KATOWICACH ISBN 97883-242-1508-9 LINGUISTICA SILESIANA Vol. 31 UNIVERSITAS POLSKA AKADEMIA NAUK ODDZIAŁ W KATOWICACH IS(cid:37)(cid:49)(cid:3)(cid:28)(cid:26)(cid:27)(cid:27)(cid:22)(cid:16)(cid:21)(cid:23)(cid:21)(cid:16)(cid:20)(cid:24)(cid:19)(cid:27)(cid:16)(cid:28) LINGUISTICA SILESIANA Vol. 31 UNIVERSITAS LINGUISTICA SILESIANA 31. POLSKA AKADEMIA NAUK · ODDZIAŁ W KATOWICACH LINGUISTICA SILESIANA Vol. 31 Rafał Molencki Editor Assistant to the Editor Artur Kijak Editorial Board J. Arabski (Katowice) W. Banyś (Katowice) A. Bogusławski (Warszawa) J. Cygan (Wrocław) J. Fisiak (Poznań) P. Kakietek (Katowice) M. Krygier (Poznań) A.M. Lewicki (Lublin) W. Lubaś (Kraków) Cz. Schatte (Poznań) P. Stalmaszczyk (Łódź) Publikację opiniował do druku Tadeusz Piotrowski Wydanie publikacji dofinansowane przez Ministerstwo Nauki i Szkolnictwa Wy ższego Dystrybucja: UNIVERSITAS ul. Żmujdzka 6B, 31-426 Kraków tel. (012) 413 91 36, 413 92 70, fax: (012) 413 91 25 e-mail: http/: © Copyright by Towarzystwo Autorów i Wydawców Prac Naukowych UNIVERSITAS, Kraków 2010 Projekt okładki: Krystyna Filipowska Nakład 300 egz. CONTENTS – SOMMAIRE – INHALTSVERZEICHNIS G.D r o ż d ż: Scope as a cognitive tool in tense analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 E.B o g d a n o w s k a - J a k u b o w s k a: Party rituals revisited . . . . . . . . . . 23 M.A. S t ę p i e ń: Imágenes mentales y conceptos: su relación en la fraseología somática hispano-polaca . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 N.K u d r n á č o v á: On pragmatic and cognitive processes in meaning variation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 M.K u c z o k: Between language and reality: metaphorical and metonymical conceptualizations of God in the New Testament . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69 P.L i g ę z a: Minimalist accounts of antecedent-contained deletion constructions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 91 A.K i j a k: Intrusive liquids in English . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 105 I. K i d a: The emergence of subordinate clauses in Old English from paratactically conjoined structures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115 K.W a r c h a ł: Taking stance across languages: high-value modal verbs of epistemic necessity and inference in English and Polish linguistics research articles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 123 J.S t a w n i c k a, A. Ł y d a: Polish achievements with expressions of duration and their terminal recategorisation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 137 C.J i n g: The analysis of the semantic bias in partially-directed compound words of Modern Chinese . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 159 C.L a c h u r: Временные конструкции с дистрибутивным значением в польском языке: усилительно-дистрибутивное время . . . . . . . . . . . . 167 J.T a r s a: „ Язык падонков” – интернетовский жаргон русской контркультуры . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 175 P.M a m e t: Changing patterns of Opel branding policy – a linguistic analysis . . 181 A. Ł y d a, A. J a c k i e w i c z, K. W a r c h a ł: Agentless structures in interpreter’s output: Looking into the gender factor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 193 A.W o j t a s z e k: What do we study when we study the use of borrowings in advertisements? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 209 M.Z a b a w a: The influence of English on the Polish language of Internet message boards: investigating the role of individual differences and the context . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 219 A. Ś w i ą t e k: Acquisition of English article system by Polish learners in different proficiency groups . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 235 J.L a t k o w s k a: Conceptualization through the lens of language: Implications for research into Polish-English bilingualism . . . . . . . . . . . . 247 A. Ś l ę z a k - Ś w i a t, M. S. W y s o c k a: The neural bases of fossilization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 257 . . Linguistica Silesiana 31, 2010 ISSN 0208-4228 GRZEGORZ DROŻDŻ University of Silesia SCOPE AS A COGNITIVE TOOL IN TENSE ANALYSIS The present article takes up one of the needs present in today’s Cognitive Linguistics: applying its theoretical assumptions to a detailed study of the phenomena encountered in particular languages. The instrument tested for this purpose is one of the aspects of construal offered within Cognitive Grammar – scope (Langacker 1987, 2000, 2008, etc.). It is applied to the description of several English temporal constructions in order to check both the range of phenomena which it can refer to as well as the ef  ciency and accuracy of such an account. 1. Introduction Cognitive linguistics offers a wide variety of both theoretical models as well as precise tools to be used in linguistic research. Despite their conceptual unity, an application of them may “highlight different (although related) facets of the shared conceptualization of language” (Broccias 2006: 83). However, acknowledging so is only a beginning for, as the same author observes, “one of the next challenges for cognitive linguistics is to see how we can put this view into effect by relating it to the realm of applied linguistics” (ibid.: 111). The present article is supposed to take this challenge and check the applicability of one of the tools offered within Cognitive Grammar, scope (Langacker 1987, 1991, 1995, 2000, 2008, etc.), to applied linguistics. The area of study is the grammar of the English language or, more speci cally, its temporal constructions. The analysis aims to check the construct’s potential – both the type as well as the range of observations which are possible with it. Scope is not an individual tool – it is one of the aspects of a more general human ability of construal. Consequently, even when we analyse one of those aspects, it is necessary to mention at least the ones which in  uence it. To obey these guidelines, the article starts with a brief characterization of the phenomenon of construal: its origin, applicability, and aspects which it covers. What follows is a detailed 8 GRZEGORZ DROŻDŻ description of scope – its relations with other construal aspects and a set of features which it consequently reveals. Finally, it will be transferred to the more speci  c area of temporal constructions, where scope adopts more speci  c characteristics. There, through an application of this construct to an analysis of different temporal constructions, its applicability is tested. The article is concluded with a review of the possible observations which were possible thanks to it and the author’s opinion whether it is suitable for a linguistic tool. 2. Scope as one of the aspects of construal One of the tenets of Cognitive Linguistics is the claim that different expressions encode alternative manners of viewing a situation (e.g. Croft, Cruse 2004: 1–2, Geeraerts, construal. Cuyckens 2007: 3–5, etc.). The cover term for all these manners is However, the choice of how we construe a process or an entity is not entirely free – we can construe something only to an extent which is already encoded in a language. In other words, a construal of some conceptual content is part of the meaning of an expression (Langacker 2008: 55). We can only in uence the construal by picking a different expression which will better re ect what we wish to convey. Such a status of construal places it and its aspects among the most signi cant semantic phenomena. There are several construal aspects. Although their ultimate number and type of vantage scope, there are also such aspects as classi cation is still unsettled in theoretical considerations (cf. Verhagen 2007), it is useful to observe that apart from point, acuity, or distance (Langacker 2000). At the same time these are the ones which originate from, and are thus intimately related to the viewing arrangement ( g. 1). The vantage point can be characterised as “the spot at which the viewer is situated and from which the scene is viewed” (Langacker 2000: 207). The viewer is, of course, the conceptualizer – the subject of conception. The pro le is the object of conception and the bold line around it signals both its salience against the immediate scope as well as its degree of acuity (also called resolution or granularity) for the conceptualizer. The distance between the conceptualizer and the object of conception is self-explanatory. The distance arrow also represents “the construal relationship wherein the conceptualizer entertains the overall conception (of the pro  le – GD) and structures it in a certain manner” (ibid.). The maximal scope comprises “the full immediate scope is the area content of a given conceptualization” (ibid.), and the which we are speci cally attending to. SCOPE AS A COGNITIVE TOOL IN TENSE ANALYSIS 9 C – conceptualizer, P – pro le, D – distance, MS – maximal scope, IS – immediate scope Fig. 1. The viewing arrangement and its components as a basis for the conceptual arrangement The proper issue of the present article is one of these construal aspects – scope, which can be de ned as “the conceptual content appearing in the subjective viewing frame inherent in its apprehension” (Langacker 2008: 63). However, to delineate its properties accurately, a relation between it and some other aspects of construal needs to be discussed. 2.1. Scope and base One of the aspects of construal which can be applied in semantic analyses in a manner largely parallel to scope is base. This term has been de ned as “an array of conceptual pro le. content” (Langacker 2000: 366) evoked by the designated entity – the Actually, in one of his latest publications Langacker (2008: 66) pointed explicitly to the link between scope and base: “Construed broadly, an expression’s conceptual base is identi ed as its maximal scope in all domains of its matrix (or all domains accessed on a given occasion). Construed more narrowly, its base is identi ed as the immediate scope in active domains”. Despite such a high degree of correlation, I would like to point to several operational differences between the two constructs which may turn out decisive in selecting a tool for analysis. As Langacker (1987: 120) admits, the pro  le – base distinction was inspired by the  gure – ground organization. What it means is that the distinction between the pro le and base can be reduced to a simple alignment: the designated element (pro le) and the remainder (base). However, such a basic division of the temporal content can work only in speci c cases, e.g. when the temporal scene underlying the use of a tense can be clearly divided into pro  led and backgrounded elements, as in the case of the Present Perfect tense (Dro żdż 2009b). In the case of scenes with only one pro led element, e.g. the Present Continuous tense (cf. Drożdż 2010) or Past Simple, such a division would be of little use. This contrast is illustrated in  gure 2, where two of the uses of the respective tenses are shown. In the  rst of them ( g. 2a), Present Perfect, pro  les two out of three elements of the conceptual scene underlying this use: a moment in the past when the designated process began 10 GRZEGORZ DROŻDŻ and its continuation till the present moment (like in the sentence She has lived here for a year). The third element of the scene, the present moment, is not pro led in this use – it belongs to the base. Despite a lack of any other tools, the diagram seems to play its schematic role quite well pointing to the salient elements of the scene. What the second  gure ( g. 2b) shows is the main use of Past Simple: an action performed before the moment of speaking. Because this use pro  les a single occurrence of an action (like in the sentence I read an article yesterday), very little can be shown by means of just pro le and base: virtually only the process (pro  le) which takes place against the rest of the temporal content (base). Such a representation would not convey much information about the temporal boundaries within which the process is placed, the reasons for a lack of relation to the present moment, etc. What is needed, then, is some other tool or tools which would supply it, like in the  gure 9b where scope was introduced. (a) Present Perfect (b) Past Simple Fig. 2. An application of pro le and base to an analysis of uses of Present Perfect and Past Simple Let me now proceed to a more detailed characterization of the properties of scope resulting from its co-occurrence with other construal aspects. 2.2. Scope and the vantage point Scope co-occurs with several other construal aspects. Keeping in mind the fact that the notion of construal originates from the visual scene, it should come as no surprise vantage point. On the one hand, it has been that the  rst to be mentioned is the characterized as the position adopted by the conceptualizer. On the other hand, it is also the position where the boundaries of the visual scene converge. It is important to observe at this point that the extent of scope is limited: it has a beginning and an end, as well as a place where the two meet. However, the status of these elements is not equal – from a certain perspective this last of them seems more signi  cant than the other two because, as Langacker (2008: 157) notices, the immediate scope is in fact positioned with respect to the vantage point ( g. 1). And in default cases the vantage point is equated with the time of the speech event (ibid.: 76). Although it plays no direct role in the below analyses I believe it is necessary to acknowledge both its existence and signi cance. SCOPE AS A COGNITIVE TOOL IN TENSE ANALYSIS 11 2.3. Scope – distance – acuity The last set of relations that I wish to point to hold between scope and two other construal aspects: distance and acuity. These correlations stem from visual perception: if we focus on a distant object (the distance between the conceptualizer and the object is long), we can hardly distinguish the details of it (the object’s acuity is low). At the same time, the scope of our attention covers a large area of the world around us (the scope is broad) ( g. 3a). Considering a converse situation – attending a proximate distance the object – the above parameters will adopt converse values: at a short object’s acuity will be high and the scope within which we perceive the object will be narrow (cf. Langacker 2000: 206, Lakoff 1987: 428). 3. Construal aspects in the temporal domain So far the considerations focused on the construal aspects and their properties in the spatial domain. Let us now see how they hold in the temporal domain. As for the vantage point, its interpretation in time is rather unproblematic. Adopting a spatial position for viewing means at the same time entering the temporal domain within which the viewing will be done. As Langacker (2000: 207) observes, “the time of speaking is a temporal vantage point”. The other construct which does not require much elaboration is the pro le – the designated process. The temporal relationships between distance, acuity, and scope is a more complex matter for the correlations known from space do not necessarily have to hold in time. An example can be the Past Continuous tense – although it describes a process in the, often correlated with Past Simple, it construes the process with high acuity. Concluding, the distance between the time of speaking and the denoted process does not exclusively depend on the temporal distance between the conceptualizer and the process. Rather, it seems more intimately correlated with the extent of the temporal scene (scope) which the conceptualizer embraces while viewing. In other words, the broader the scope the more distant the process and, at the same time, the lower the acuity of the process (  g. 3). Actually, such a situation establishes good grounds for postulating two different, albeit related types of acuity: process and time acuity. However, this detailed issue is dealt with more extensively elsewhere (Drożdż 2010). 12 GRZEGORZ DROŻDŻ (a) Broad scope, distant process, and low (b) Narrow scope, proximate process, and acuity high acuity Fig. 3. The relations among scope, distance, and acuity of a process 4. Temporal characteristics of scope Now I would like to elaborate more fully on a more precise characterization of the very notion of scope. This will proceed along two dimensions: on the one hand, a discussion of the elements of scope will be held: the immediate and maximal scope and the type of processes which it can encompass. On the other hand, they will be presented in a manner suited to the present analysis: as functioning in the temporal domain. 4.1. Maximal and immediate scope So far scope has been treated as a unitary construct. However, it does not have to be so – sometimes it is necessary to distinguish between “an expression’s maximal scope in some domain, i.e. the full extent of its coverage, and a limited immediate scope, the portion directly relevant for a particular purpose” (Langacker 2008: 63). What it means is that in a characterization of e.g. the term hand, the arm would constitute the immediate scope, and the whole body – the maximal scope, as illustrated in  gure 4. Fig. 4. Immediate and maximal scope of hand (Langacker 2008: 64) SCOPE AS A COGNITIVE TOOL IN TENSE ANALYSIS 13 In the temporal domain these types of scope receive very precise de  nitions. However, at this juncture an important difference between Langacker’s approach and the one adopted in the present article needs to be noted. The main motif in Langacker’s (2001, 2008: 147–160) temporal considerations is the distinction between perfective and imperfective processes. By the former he means processes which are “bounded in time” and designating “occurrences with a beginning and an end” (Langacker 2008: 147) while the latter group can be characterized as pro  ling “stable situations of inde nite duration” (ibid.) ( g. 5). Fig. 5. Perfective and imperfective verbs (Langacker 2008: 153) This division is re ected in the de nitions he offers for the two types of scope – the maximal scope is de ned as “a span of time containing the full, bounded process” (Langacker 2001: 12), whereas the immediate scope as the one which “subtends only an arbitrary portion of its internal development”. What is more, “only that portion is pro led since – as a matter of de  nition – the pro le is the focal point within the immediate scope” (ibid.), as shown in  gures 6b, d. Fig. 6. An application of the perfective – imperfective distinction to different temporal constructions (Langacker 2008: 158) Although the perfective – imperfective distinction is unquestionably vital for grammar, I believe it would be pro table to modify the de nition of scope. Rather than focusing on the type of process designated by the verb, I suggest taking into account 14 GRZEGORZ DROŻDŻ the type of construal which the given structure imposes on the denoted process. It is worth noticing that such an approach is not contradictory to the Cognitive Grammar assumptions: “an expression imposes a particular construal, re ecting just one of the countless ways of conceiving and portraying the situation in question” (Langacker 2008: 4). I believe that thanks to such a modi ed de nition some important properties of the constructions in question can be pointed to, as the below discussion aims to prove. Consequently, in the present article the maximal scope of a temporal construction immediate scope as will be understood as embracing the whole of time, and the embracing the part of temporal reality within which the conceptualizer positions the whole of the pro  led action ( g. 7). What extends beyond the immediate scope is the existence of the conceptualized object or person before and after the designated process and whether it is marked is actually a matter of convenience. One more issue concerning the pro le should born in mind – the conceptualizer is not entirely free in his choice of construal – he or she cannot impose any construal of the given pro  le by means of a structure for it will not be understood properly by the hearers (e.g. Past Continuous cannot point to a single occurrence of a process in the past). He or she can manipulate the type of scope only to the extent which the structure affords. Construal, then, is both a function of the applied construction and the conceptualizer’s choice. Fig. 7. A temporal characterization of the immediate and maximal scope Concluding, an operational remark needs to be added. Since the maximal scope reveals a constant value which is not crucial in the majority of analyses, for the sake of convenience it will be excluded from the below analyses. 4.2. Scope and pro le Now I wish to discuss another dimension of scope – its relationship with the pro led process. This is also an area where the model proposed in the article parts from Langacker’s. Although they still have much in common, for instance the fact that the pro led process must be manifested within the immediate temporal scope (Langacker 2008: 157), the type of manifestation remains at issue. SCOPE AS A COGNITIVE TOOL IN TENSE ANALYSIS 15 4.2.1. Present Simple and Present Continuous In the present approach the emphasis is put on the type of construal which the construction imposes on the process. In other words, although it is unquestionable that unbounded verbs basically appear in Present Simple and bounded in Present Continuous (Langacker 2008: 147–148), from our encyclopaedic knowledge we know that relatively few processes are really unbounded (even the existence of the world and the movement of the Earth around the Sun began at some point). As a consequence, it will be assumed that choosing a tense like Present or Past Simple we impose a holistic construal of the pro led action ( g. 8a), while by means of such tenses as Present or Past Continuous we adopt an internal perspective on the pro led actions ( g. 8b). a) The holistic construal b) The internal construal Fig. 8. A comparison of the holistic and internal construal of the process It is important to observe that in this sense the immediate scope does not coincide with the time of the speech event, which the pro led actions can exceed, as proposed the whole of the pro  led by Langacker (2008: 157–158) (  g. 6b, d). It embraces process, whatever its length. Now the breadth of the scope, the distance to the pro led action, as well as the acuity of the pro le can be seen as a result of selecting the given construction. At the same time, as has been discussed, a change in any of them entails a change in the others. An illustration of it can be the difference between the type of construal encoded by Present Simple and Present Continuous. The  rst diagram ( g. 9a) illustrates a sentence like I know him well, where by knowing the conceptualizer means the process extending between the moment when the two people met and when one of them will die. As can be seen, the immediate scope of such a process is very broad, the distance between the conceptualizer and the pro le is long and, as a consequence, the acuity of the process is low. At the same time, the process of knowing is not perceived as if it was in progress but it is viewed holistically. Such a construal explains why repeated actions, e.g. She reads books , are also generally expressed by means of Present Simple – due to the broad scope, long distance, and low acuity of the process the repeated actions seem one, continuous process (though this use is classi  ed by Langacker (2008: 148) as “special”). A different type of construal is encoded in Present Continuous (  g. 9b). Here, because of the narrow scope, short distance, and high acuity of the process it is possible to adopt “an “internal perspective” on the verbal process” (Langacker 2008: 166), as in the sentence reading a book now. I’m 16 GRZEGORZ DROŻDŻ a) Present Simple b) Present Continuous Fig. 9. A comparison of the types of construal encoded in Present Simple and Present Continuous 4.2.2. Present Simple and Past Simple Such an approach to tenses enables also another type of observation – what such tenses as Present Simple and Past Simple have in common. From the point of view of their temporal reference they seem different. Also, when we think of the type of designated process they appear with different types of verbs: the former usually with imperfective, while the latter with perfective. However, there is a strong bond between them – they base on the same type of construal. Of course, not in absolute terms – in visual ones. The process encoded by Present Simple might be compared to seeing a large  eld from a distance, when we embrace the whole of it and little can be seen but the  eld. On the other hand, from such a position we can hardly attend to any details of it ( g. 10a). What Past Simple encodes can be compared to the perspective achieved when we move from that position even farther away from the  eld: at a certain distance it becomes only a single point on the horizon, and the visual scene will encompass a broader perspective than just the  eld ( g. 10b). In other words, all the values assumed by the construal aspects in one tense can be found in the other: in both cases the distance between the process and the conceptualizer is long, the acuity of the process is low, and the scope is broad. Actually, in all these cases Past Simple is construed as more distant than Present Simple (longer distance, lower acuity, broader scope). Of course, the distance is not purely temporal – it is the one which the selected construction affords, and it seems more closely related to the mental distance between the conceptualizer and the pro  led action. However, for descriptive purposes I believe it would be suf  cient to assume that the distance encoded in them is parallel. Naturally, there is a difference between the distance to a past, completed process and a process which is not completed. Still, in both cases we construe them holistically, without focusing on their development. In fact, the above remarks lead to the conclusion that the holistic construal uni es two distinct types of processes: on the one hand, even processes which are relatively long are expressed in Past Simple as if they were punctual. We know that e.g. going on holiday to Spain takes a long time – booking a hotel, plane, packing, going there, SCOPE AS A COGNITIVE TOOL IN TENSE ANALYSIS 17 spending there one or two weeks, and coming back. Still, when we say a sentence like I went on holiday to Spain last year we construe all these activities and all this time as if it was a single, punctual event. This is also what happens to repetitive processes – they are rendered as if they were single occurrences of the action. In English the same form of the verb can be used to mean a single process as well as a repetitive one, e.g. I watched a  lm yesterday as opposed to I watched a  lm every day when I was a child. In other words, the distance between the described processes and the conceptualizer is so great that they seem punctual despite their actual length or number of occurrences. a) The visual scene underlying b) The visual scene underlying Present Simple Past Simple c) Present Simple d) Past Simple Fig. 10. A comparison of the types of construal encoded by Present Simple and Past Simple 4.2.3. Past Simple and Past Continuous To exhaust the problem of the distinction between a process taking the whole immediate scope and occurring once within it I wish to discuss one more contrast – between Past Simple and Past Continuous. Most grammar books will probably agree that the two constructions share at least a common temporal reference – the past, and that the major difference between them is the aspect (simple, as opposed to continuous). Can the scope and other construal aspects be of any help in this respect? Past Simple has already been discussed in detail: despite its misleading graphic representation, the scope is broad, the distance between the conceptualizer and the process is long, and the pro led process reveals low acuity. What is more, because of the large distance it is construed as if it was a single occurrence of the process within 18 GRZEGORZ DROŻDŻ the scope ( g. 11a). Past Continuous is on the opposite side of the scale in all of these respects: the distance between the conceptualizer and the process is construed as very short. Consequently, the acuity of the process is so high, and the designated process so detailed, that it  lls the whole of scope. At the same time, the graphic representation of the scope is convergent with what it symbolizes – it is very narrow ( g. 11b). A suitable example of the tense might be Yesterday at six I was writing a letter. Concluding, from the point of view of construal aspects two constructions can hardly be more different than these two. Still, it must be noticed that they commonly co-occur, which might suggest that they are not so different. And this is where another observation should be made: the processes expressed by means of Past Simple are so long that they can easily receive a different construal – as developing in time. It is enough to change one parameter any process – shorten the mental distance to it. Although this means that actually construed holistically can be turned into durative, this is perfectly congruent with one of the Cognitive Grammar claims – “the perfective/imperfective contrast is anything but a rigid lexical speci cation” (Langacker 2008: 148). In other words, despite such differences in characterization, the two types of construal have one common characteristic –  exibility. And due to it one type of construal can unproblematically turn into the other. a) Past Simple b) Past Continuous Fig. 11. A comparison of the types of construal encoded by Past Simple and Past Continuous Summing up the problem of process duration vs. punctuality, I would like to observe that a question which might be expected to lead to some aspectual considerations turns out to be inappropriately formulated. The similarity of the pro  les taking the whole span of scope turns out to be super  cial – such tenses as Present Simple and Continuous denote in fact two different types of processes. This can be best seen in  gure 9a and 9b – the former tense construes the process as a whole and, as a con- sequence, its development is in the base. The latter imposes a converse construal – pro ling the development of the process it backgrounds the process as a whole. And although these types of construal can be easily exchanged, they are nevertheless distinct. Concluding, the real similarity between different uses of tenses does not lie in their graphic representations, for diagrams which seem different depict in fact parallel processes (e.g.  g. 10c, d) – it lies in similar types of construal which the uses receive. SCOPE AS A COGNITIVE TOOL IN TENSE ANALYSIS 19 4.2.4. Present Continuous The last problem which I would like to discuss in the present article is the question arising from the above considerations – constructional polysemy. On the one hand, Langacker (1995: 51) states that “a symbolic element is often polysemous: it has not just one meaning but a family of related senses”. On the other hand, in his analyses he strives to arrive at a characterization of different uses of a tense which shows what the uses have in common, e.g. the present tense “indicates the occurrence of a full instantiation of the pro led process that precisely coincides with the time of speaking” (Langacker 1991: 250). The approach adopted in the present article is that one construction can possess several distinct, albeit related, uses. What it means is that both the types of processes pro led by them as well as the parameters of construal aspects characterizing them can be different. A good illustration of the point is Present Continuous. In the majority of its uses (cf. Drożdż 2010), it pro les durative processes of high or medium acuity which take the whole of time encompassed by the immediate scope. An example can be the process depicted in  gure 12a, which can be an illustration to a good book this week. Although the denoted process is repeated over the week, the construction renders it as durative. In this use the three construal aspects adopt the following values: middle temporal distance, middle acuity and middle scope. However, in its future use Present Continuous pro  les a different kind of action – a punctual one ( g. 12b) (cf. Drożdż 2009a). I’m reading a) The durative use b) The punctual use Fig. 12. Two of the uses of Present Continuous Despite the fact that the diagrams of the two uses may seem similar to those of Present Simple and Past Simple ( g. 10c, d), the two uses encode a different type of relationship. Unquestionably, they have a lot in common: all the construal aspects adopt identical values – middle. However, they also reveal signi cant differences. The  rst of them has already been mentioned – the type of pro led process: durative versus punctual. Another becomes clearer if one refers to the contrast between Present and Past Simple. The main distinction between the two tenses stems from the difference in the perspective – it is so big that the processes are not compatible – one cannot be a part of the other. Here, with Present Continuous the opposite is true: the processes 20 GRZEGORZ DROŻDŻ are construed from more or less the same distance and the punctual one can be a part of the durative. In other words, this time the distinction between them is really about the contrast between a durative and punctual one or, more speci cally, one designating the completion of a process. The above considerations lead to at least one observation – that it is plausible to claim that tenses are polysemic structures. There can also be a complementary one – the processes encoded by a tense can vary signi  cantly though the degree of their variation is limited. 5. Conclusion  ned and characterized for linguistic purposes. The analysed construct, scope, has been tested from different perspectives. First, it is a tool which can be precisely de Another point is that due to its origin in visual perception it is not a sophisticated tool – it does not require extensive study for the phenomena which it covers are commonly shared. What is more, it is not an only tool – it is one of several construal aspects so even if it cannot describe adequately some aspect of language on its own, thanks to its co-occurrence with other aspects the needed precision can be ultimately achieved. Finally, the range of temporal observations which were possible thanks to it justi es the concluding opinion that scope can be classi ed as a fully- edged linguistic tool. References Broccias, C. 2006. Cognitive approaches to grammar. In G. Kristiansen, M. Achard, R. Dirven and F.J. Ruiz de Mendoza Ibá ñez (eds.) Cognitive Linguistics: Current Applications and Future Perspectives, 81–115. Berlin, New York: Mouton de Gruyter. Croft, W., A. Cruse. 2004. Cognitive Linguistics. Cambridge: CUP. Drożdż, G. 2009a. Od my ślenia do słowa, czyli o sposobach wyra żania przyszłości w języku angielskim. In A. Łyda, K. Warcha ł (eds.) Granice rozmyte – terytoria niczyje . Studia z zakresu języka i kultury, 61–74. Katowice: WSZMiJO. Drożdż, G. 2009b. Perception in Grammar. Paper presented at the 21st International Conference on Foreign/Second Language Acquisition “Individual Learner Differences in Second Language Acquisition”, University of Silesia, May 2009. Drożdż, G. 2010. The Structure of a Tense – a Cognitive Analysis. In B. Bierwiaczonek, A. Tu- rula (eds.) Studies in Cognitive Semantics. Częstochowa: Wydawnictwo Naukowe WSL. The Oxford Handbook of Cognitive Linguistics . Geeraerts, D., H. Cuyckens (eds.). 2007. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Lakoff, G. 1987. Women, Fire, and Dangerous Things. What Categories Reveal about the Mind. Chicago: Chicago University Press. Langacker, R. 1987. Foundations of Cognitive Grammar. Volume I: Theoretical Prerequisites. Stanford, California: Stanford University Press. Langacker, R. 1991. Foundations of Cognitive Grammar. Volume II: Descriptive Application . Stanford, California: Stanford University Press. SCOPE AS A COGNITIVE TOOL IN TENSE ANALYSIS 21 Langacker, R. 1995. Possession and possessive constructions. In J.R. Taylor, R.E. MacLaury , 51–80. Berlin, New York: (eds.) Language and the Cognitive Construal of the World Mouton de Gruyter. Langacker, R. 2000. Grammar and Conceptualization. Berlin, New York: Mouton de Gruyter. Langacker, R. 2001. Cognitive linguistics, language pedagogy, and the English present tense. In M. Pütz, S. Niemeier and R. Dirven (eds.) Applied Cognitive Linguistics I: Theory and Language Acquisition, 3–39. Berlin, New York: Mouton de Gruyter. Langacker, R. 2008. Cognitive Grammar . A Basic Introduction. Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press. Verhagen, A. 2007. Construal and Perspectivization. In D. Geeraerts, H. Cuyckens (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Cognitive Linguistics, 48-81. Oxford: Oxford University Press. . . Linguistica Silesiana 31, 2010 ISSN 0208-4228 EWA BOGDANOWSKA-JAKUBOWSKA University of Silesia PARTY RITUALS REVISITED The paper deals with the rituals performed by party participants, both hosts and guests. The theoretical basis for the study is Erving Goffman’s (1955, 1967) seminal work on interaction rituals. The rituals discussed here include greetings and introductions, com- pliments and responses to compliments, food offers and responses to them, and part- ing rituals. They are presented against two different cultural backgrounds, Polish and generally understood Anglo-Saxon. The data used in the analysis were gathered in Poland, England and the English-speaking part of Canada. Participant observation, interviews and introspection were the methods used to collect them. 1. Introduction In this paper I would like to present a contrastive analysis of polite rituals performed in the party situation in two different cultures, Polish and Anglo-Saxon. The recurrence of certain communicative goals in interpersonal communication results in some communicative strategies being turned into “ interaction rituals,” as Goffman (1967; cf. Rothenbuhler, 1998; Jakubowska, 2003) calls them. He compares these “little ceremonies of everyday life” to religious rituals. Interaction rituals have a social function. They are acts “through whose symbolic component the actor shows how worthy he is of respect or how worthy he feels others are of it” (Goffman, 1955: 328). Our everyday behaviour is subject to ritual constraints which have to do with “how each individual ought to handle himself with respect to each of the others, so that he does not discredit his own tacit claim to good character or the tacit claim of the others that they are persons of social worth whose various forms of territoriality are to be respected” (Goffman, 1976: 266). What is at issue is the participants’ face. Interac- tion rituals are to see to the basic human face-needs: the need for approval and the need for individuation and freedom of action. To be able to see and interpret differences between rituals performed in different parts of the world, we need the concept of culture. It is central for the studies of cross- linguistic and cross-cultural communication. It helps researchers understand the na- ture of social interaction (cf. Bond et al., 2000). The aspects of culture that constitute 24 EWA BOGDANOWSKA-JAKUBOWSKA a conceptual basis for the present study are social relations and social values, as they strongly influence the way members of a given culture behave; they play a very impor- tant role in the formation of interactional norms and interaction rituals. Polish culture and, generally understood, Anglo-Saxon culture, even though they both have European roots, differ in the hierarchies of values they cherish. These differ- ences “translate” into different interactional norms and rituals, party rituals included. The analysis of party rituals to be presented here is based on the data gathered in Poland, England and the English-speaking part of Canada. Participant observation, interviews and introspection were the methods used to collect them. Interviews and introspection were helpful in providing many pieces of important information con- cerning the repertoire of party rituals present in the two cultures. However, the infor- mants often idealised the use of rituals, and their choices often suggested how they should be used and not how they were actually used. Participant observation made up for this insufficiency, because it recorded the rituals used in real situations. The variety of sources allowed the author to have a cross-checking perspective on the analysed material. The respondents were native speakers of their respective languages, Polish and English. The three groups (Poles, the English and Canadians) came from a similar sociocultural background and were rather homogeneous. All of the participants were educated (university or high school graduates). They were aged 20 to 67. 2. Communicative goals in social interaction Conversation is “a structured event” made up of encounters, which can be viewed transactionally (i.e., the main aim of the encounter is the efficient transference of in- formation; the language used is primarily “message oriented”), or interactionally (i.e., the main aim of the encounter is establishing and maintaining social relationships) (Brown and Yule, 1988: 2–3). Exchange in social interaction and politeness have a “ritual” character. This ritualization and ritual prepatterned behaviour improve the signal and therefore com- munication (Goffman, 1967; 1971; 1981; Huxley, 1966; Ferguson, 1981; Laver, 1981). “Interaction rituals” (also called “interpersonal rituals” (Ferguson, 1981) and “rituals of exchange” (Brown and Levinson, 1987)) have a social function. They are used to establish and/or maintain a state of “ritual equilibrium,” which is necessary to sustain one’s own face and the face of the other (Goffman, 1967). Goffman claims that “main- tenance of face is a condition of interaction” (Goffman, 1955: 323). The condition all participants of social interaction have to fulfil, among other things, by performing in- teraction rituals. The participants’ performance of interaction rituals is based on rational grounds. In encounters viewed transactionally, in the first place, they are cooperative, while in encounters viewed interactionally, they (are expected to) follow social norms and main- tain each others’ face. In both cases, they act rationally. As Brown and Levinson (1987: 58) put it, they employ “linguistic strategies as means satisfying communicative and PARTY RITUALS REVISITED 25 face-oriented ends, in a strictly formal system of rational ‘practical reasoning’.” In the first case, their rationality means cooperation with their interlocutors in the Gricean sense. In the second case, “practical reasoning” implies a pragmatic approach to the interlocutors and conversational goals, doing what is socially acceptable – approving of their positive self-image and avoiding impositions. Thus, every interactant, who is capable of practical reasoning, is rational both in being cooperative and in tending to one’s own and the others’ face needs (Jakubowska, 2001). Interaction rituals are the tools which serve this purpose. 3. Everyday rituals People behave in a conventionalised way by performing fossilised rituals in various social situations. It is said that in some situations utterances we make (e.g., thanks and apologies) are merely ritual, i.e., that we are simply doing what is expected of us (Fraser, 1981; Aijmer, 1996) and we are often insincere and do not mean what we say. To maintain a state of ritual equilibrium people address each other properly with respect to the context of the situation, their relationship and their social status. Greetings and farewells are used as “access rituals” (Goffman, 1971: 79). “Greetings mark the transi- tion to a condition of increased access and farewells to a state of decreased access” (ibid.: 47). They have three main functions: attention-production, identification, and reduction of anxiety in social contacts (Firth, 1972; Malinowski, 1923; cf. Laver, 1981). There are two kinds of ritual interchanges: “supportive rituals,” which are performed for the sake of mutual support (e.g., thanks, congratulations, condolences), and “reme- dial rituals,” performed when the speaker tries to remedy an offence he/she has com- mitted and thus re-establish a state of ritual equilibrium (e.g., apologies) (Goffman, 1971). Some of these rituals can be performed verbally and nonverbally, others only ver- bally with the use of certain routine formulae (called also polite formulae) (cf. Ożóg, 1990, 1997, 2004a). Thus, to perform these rituals people use: • words of address, • • • • • other “polite” formulae (e.g., compliments, congratulations, good wishes, toasts, formulae beginning a conversation – greetings, formulae ending a conversation – farewells, formulae expressing gratitude – thanks, formulae expressing apology, and condolences). Politeness is considered a social phenomenon, and although on the surface it ap- pears “to fulfill altruistic goals, it is nevertheless a mask to conceal ego’s true frame of mind” (Watts, 2005: 47; Watts 2003; cf. Fraser, 1990; Eelen, 2001). By hiding his/her true frame of mind, the speaker tries to gain social acceptance and appreciation of his/ her positive consistent self-image, which will help him/her achieve his/her goals. How- ever, he/she can successfully do so not only by resorting to the so-called “polite” ex- pressions, but by performing ritualised, institutionalised forms of social behaviour, called 26 EWA BOGDANOWSKA-JAKUBOWSKA by Watts (2003) politic behaviour. This is the kind of linguistic behaviour which “is perceived to be appropriate to the social constraints of the ongoing interaction, i.e. as non-salient” (ibid.: 19). The (im)polite sense of the utterances often depends on the context of their use. Many utterances which are used to perform ritualised forms of social behaviour are not inherently polite, but help maintain harmony and good rela- tionships between interactants (cf. Ożóg, 1990). The ways of maintaining social harmony and establishing good relationships dif- fer from culture to culture, as everyday rituals performed to achieve them encode cul- tural beliefs and reflect community social organisation, and as such are language- and culture-specific. 4. Cross-cultural differences in social interaction The greatest differences between the two cultures to be compared can be noticed along the individualism-collectivism dimension. Anglo-Saxon culture is individualistic. It values individuality, equality between people, moderate emotionality, limited to the controlled expression of exclusively positive emotions, promotion of success, and the need for freedom of action and freedom from imposition, which is expressed by means of different face-saving devices, such as restraint, hedges, questions, expressions of deference, polite pessimism and conventionalised indirectness (Ting-Toomey, 1988; Johnson, 1985). The primary orientation tends toward the individual self rather than toward the significant other. Self-assertiveness, a high degree of self-reliance and in- dependence are highly valued in Anglo-Saxon culture. Polish culture, unlike Anglo-Saxon culture, is not a clear example of one of the two cultural categories. Traditionally, Poles value respect, interdependence, reciprocal obligations, emotionality, intimacy and modesty (Wierzbicka, 1991). Respect is marked by large power distance and ascribed status. It is achieved by the use of appropriate forms of address and the number and intensity of politeness expressions. Emotionality is expressed as sincere interest in the interlocutor’s life and spontaneity. Poles approve of genuine, almost uncontrolled, expression of feelings (both positive and negative), put high value on relationships (friendship and family) and hospitality (invitations, party rituals) (Lubecka, 2000). Modesty is marked by lack of self-confidence, visible in responses to compliments (most often they are played down), and lack of assertiveness, visible in the way Poles present themselves. Nowadays, however, Polish culture cannot be classified as collectivistic, although it has been considered as such by many researchers (e.g., Lewicka, 2005; Lubecka, 2000). Recently Polish culture has been strongly influenced by changes which took place in Poland after 1989. As Triandis claims (1995: 15): In the formerly Communist countries, the shift toward market economies has much in com- mon with the shift from collectivism to individualism in many parts of the world. PARTY RITUALS REVISITED 27 The changes involved political and economic, as well as social transformations. Their consequences have been cultural changes and the opening of Poland to modern Western culture, American culture in particular (Ożóg, 2002; 2004). Poles have bor- rowed main Western values and assimilated some elements of Western lifestyle. For example, success, especially financial success, has become one of the most important aims of life; individualism, independence, freedom of choice and greater mobility have become the main categories of the lifestyle of the Polish young generation (ibid.). Traditionally thinking members of older generation of Poles represent more col- lectivistic values and follow collectivistic norms of behaviour, while the Poles that became adult after 1989 cherish more individualistic values and the norms character- istic individualistic societies. The existence of the two different hierarchies of values represented by the two generation groups in one culture results in differences in social relations and different patterns of behaviour. 5. At the party The party situation cannot be treated as an average everyday situation. This is a spe- cial event, mainly of interactional character, which involves a voluntary gathering of people who have, or at least should have, positive feelings toward each other. It requires special attention to the way we behave and to what we say. This, certainly, requires a knowledge of etiquette, the formal rules of proper social behaviour. The party is like a theatrical play in which every participant has his/her own special role to perform. The actors act as the host(s) and the guest(s). The host of the party is its organiser and at the same time the main animator, responsible for the generally understood success of the party. Using Wierzbicka’s universal primitives, we may say that the host’s main obligation is to make all the guests feel good. The guests, who form the other group of actors, have much easier tasks to do. They are obliged to express their appreciation to the host for his/her attempts to make them feel good and establish and maintain good relations with fellow-quests. Guests, even though they often form a group, should be treated by the host individually. Although the host of the party and his guests have different roles to perform they have similar interactive goals. All of them enter the party interaction as individuals having specified needs and expectations. They want to present themselves in the best way. The two main self-presentational motives are to please others and to construct one’s public self congruent with one’s ideal (Baumeister, 1982). “Self-presentation is aimed at establishing, maintaining, or refining an image of the individual in the minds of others” (ibid.: 3; cf. Goffman, 1959). For Goffman, self-presentation is a ritually coordinated sequence of social actions by means of which a person gains his position in a network of social relations. A “true”, “real”, or “private” self is constructed through one’s choices and performances. Creating the self is a matter of self-presentation only insofar as it is concerned with establishing and maintaining one’s public self, that is, the image of oneself in the minds of others (Baumeister, 1982). 28 EWA BOGDANOWSKA-JAKUBOWSKA It is obvious that what we mean by an image of a good host differs from an image of a good guest; different roles, functions and performance of different actions make these two images incompatible. However, both the host(s) and the guest(s) act also as party participants, and as such they have the same self-presentational goal, make one- self look and sound attractive to others. 6. Differences in the understanding of the concept of hospitality To talk about party rituals it is necessary first to analyse the differences in the under- standing of the concept of hospitality in the two cultures. In Anglo-Saxon culture, with its primary orientation toward the individual self rather than toward the significant other, hospitality can be found in a relatively low position in the hierarchy of values. The two expressions Make yourself at home and Help yourself, so frequently uttered by hosts in Anglo-Saxon culture, tell us a lot about the attitude toward guests. Here one more saying should be quoted, Your home is your castle, meaning that your home is a place in which you may remain private, and from which you may exclude anybody (Oxford Dictionary of Current Idiomatic English , 1985).This saying suggests that in Anglo-Saxon culture “one’s own autonomy, terri- tory, and space, simultaneously respecting the other person’s need for space and pri- vacy” are at the top of the value hierarchy. Saying Make yourself at home the host implies that he wants to share his/her home with his/her guests and that he/she wants them to feel comfortable there. Respect for the other person’s autonomy and indepen- dence is reflected also in the expression Help yourself . Uttering it the host signals that he/she does not want to impose anything on the guests and gives them freedom of action and choice. Hospitality is one of the most important values in Polish culture. Our attitude to this value can be illustrated by the two Polish sayings: Gość w dom Bóg w dom ‘A guest in the home, God in the home’, and Postaw się a zastaw się ‘Pledge your entire fortune and cut a dash.’ The first one tells a lot about the way Poles treat guests. The guest is a blessing sent by God. Postaw się a zastaw się is a form of advice for a good host, who should devote everything he/she has to entertain his/her guests, even to go into debt. Polish hospitality is connected with and can be explained by typical Polish emotionality, evinced as genuine expression of feelings, sincere interest in the interlocutor’s life, spontaneity, and high value put on relationships. However, together with the above-mentioned social and economic transformations, Polish hospitality is also changing. People work more and have less time to socialize, and face-to-face gatherings become less formal and less ritualized, and are often replaced by other less direct contacts. The differences in the understanding of the concept of hospitality in the two cul- tures are also reflected in party rituals.
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