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Corpus linguistics and conventional categories of meaning

Date: 22 November 2006 Time: 4.00-5.30 pm

The second of this year's LAEL Department Lectures on the theme 'Language, Mind and Society':

Professor Michael Hoey (University of Liverpool)

Wednesday, 22 November, 4.00 - 5.30 pm, in Cavendish Lecture Theatre. Refreshments available from 3.30 pm.

Title: Corpus linguistics and conventional categories of meaning

Abstract: Traditional strategies for talking about word definitions have includedthe concepts of polysemy, synonymy, antonymy and (co-)hyponymy, andthese different kinds of word relationship are both well established andapparently effective in accounting for word senses. However, closerexamination of 21 different uses of the word *dry* suggests that theseconcepts cannot account for how the word is really used. Still worse,when data from corpora are considered, it becomes apparent that theyneed radical re-thinking. I propose a theory of words that incorporatesantonymy, synonymy etc but fundamentally reinterprets them and assignsthem a quite different status in language - a psycholinguistic status with sociolinguistic implications.

All staff and students welcome.

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Organising departments and research centres: Linguistics and English Language

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Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Lancaster University
Lancaster LA1 4YD
United Kingdom

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