By Paul Lennon
This corpus-based examine of allusions within the British press indicates the variety of pursuits reporters allude to - from Shakespeare to television soaps, from Jane Austen to Hillary Clinton, from hymns to nursery rhymes, proverbs and riddles. It analyzes the linguistic types allusions take and demonstrates how allusions functionality meaningfully in discourse. It explores the character of the history cultural and intertextual wisdom allusions call for of readers and units out the processing levels desirous about figuring out an allusion. Allusion is built-in into current theories of oblique language and associated with idioms, wordplay and metaphor.
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Extra resources for Allusions in the Press: An Applied Linguistic Study
Searle (1993) took up Grice’s idea that indirect meaning is understood after the literal meaning has been rejected on pragmatic grounds. He also discussed figurative language in terms of the distinction between sentence meaning and utterance meaning, which is fundamental to speech act theory. His account goes like this. In a literal statement sentence meaning and utterance meaning are identical. In a simple metaphor a speaker says S is P but means S is R, so that the utterance meaning is only arrived at after rejecting the literal or sentence meaning.
To be or not to be” is probably the most well-known quotation in English, and there turned out to be several allusions to it in the corpus, but it is made up of words which are all extremely common so that a search based on any of its words would generate thousands of examples. ”. Computer search would work best for target categories which consist of a more or less closed set and which have been collected together in dictionary form, for example proverbs. But for other categories it would be difficult or impossible to base the search on a defined set of targets, since no set can ever be comprehensive.
These processes include “recognition”, or conscious identification of a trope, “interpretation”, which involves conscious working out of the implications or entailments of a trope, and, finally, “appreciation”, which involves aesthetic judgement of the trope. These later processes are nonobligatory parts of understanding (Gibbs 1994: 115). Gibbs and Moise (1997) showed experimentally that pragmatics plays a major part in people’s intuitions of what is “said”. Their subjects chose enriched pragmatic paraphrases of a sentence such as “She has three children” (“exactly three”) rather than minimal pragmatic paraphrases (“at least three”).
Allusions in the Press: An Applied Linguistic Study by Paul Lennon