Scientific Disciplinary Sector (SSD)
L-LIN/12 - LANGUAGE AND TRANSLATION - ENGLISH
Semester 2 dal Feb 26, 2018 al Jun 9, 2018.
The Building Blocks of Language: Syntax and Semantics
The course aim is to provide an introduction to the study of the English language from a syntactic and semantic perspective. At the end of the course students will have awareness of the building elements of the English sentence, which they will be able to analyse from multiple perspectives. Moreover, they will possess knowledge of the cognitive mechanisms that underlie the construction of the lexicon of a language.
The main topics covered will be:
- The Building Blocks of Language: Words, Word Classes and Phrases
- Clauses and Sentences (both Simple and Complex)
- Predicates, Arguments and Thematic Roles
The Information structure of the English Sentence:
- Given and New Information (topic and focus);
- Variation in the Structure of the Sentence (fronting, inversion, cleft sentences, extraposition, existential sentences)
- The Structure of the English Lexicon;
- Currently available Lexicographic Resources for the Study of the English Lexicon;
- Levels of Meaning;
- Main Sense Relations (syntagmatic, paradigmatic)
- The representation of Meaning: Componential Analysis, Semantic Fields, Prototype Theory, Frame Semantics
Aarts, Bas (2001) English Syntax and Argumentation, 4th edition, London, Palgrave Macmillan
*Crystal, David (1995) The Cambridge Encyclopaedia of the English Language, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press (Ch. 8 - The Nature of the Lexicon: 117-123; Ch. 9 – The Sources of the Lexicon: 124-135; Ch. 11- The Structure of the Lexicon: 156-169)
*Fillmore, Charles and Beryl T. Atkins (1992) "Toward a Frame-Based Lexicon: The Semantics of RISK and its Neighbors" in Adrienne Lehrer and Eva Feder Kittay (eds.) Frames, Fields and Contrasts, Hillsdale, N.J., Lawrence Erlbaum Associates: 75-102
*Jeffries, Lesley (2006) Discovering Language. The Structure of Modern English, London, Palgrave (Ch. 6; 7.5-7.8)
*Petruck, Miriam (1996) “Frame Semantics” in Jef Verschueren, Jan-Ola Östman, Jan Blommaert, and Chris Bulcaen (eds.). Handbook of Pragmatics, Philadelphia, PA: John Benjamins.
Texts marked by * will be a available at a copy shop near the University, starting from the beginning of the course.
Advanced and Optional:
Violi, Patrizia (1996) Significato ed Esperienza, Milano, Bompiani
Saeed, John I. (2003) Semantics, London, Blackwell
Additional bibliographic references will be indicated during the course. Class presentations will be made available on-line during the course.
Biber, Douglas, Susan Conrad and Geoffrey Leech (2002) Longman Student Grammar of Spoken and Written English, London, Longman
- Collins Cobuild English Language Dictionary for Advanced Learners, 2nd Edition, Collins
- Merriam Webster English Dictionary
- Hoepli Advanced Learner’s Dictionary Inglese-Italiano/Italiano-Inglese (2008), Milano, Hoepli
-Grande Dizionario Inglese Hazon Garzanti, nuova edizione 2008, Milano, Garzanti
||English Syntax and Argumentation
Written test including open questions, exercises and analyses. The test will last 2 hours and will be in English.
English Language 1;
English C1 level (Computer-based test);
English Literature 1.
Final Remarks: students are recommended to check the course homepage regularly for an updated version of the program.