ERIC Number: ED343388
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987
A Sociosemiotic View of the Grasp of Language at Reality: The Lexical Field "Aesthetic Judgment."
The French and English terms for characteristics of human beauty are compared and contrasted from the perspective of how sociosemiotic factors influence the ways different speech communities deal with reality. First, background and theoretical approaches to sociosemiotically based research are discussed. The adjectives examined are listed and the semiotically relevant criteria by which the various terms are assigned to individuals are outlined. The ways in which French and British people apply the criteria are examined and compared. These parameters of beauty are considered: clothing; body; constitution (refined vs. coarse features); approximation of perfection in appearance; harmony of appearance; the degree to which one looks one's age; vanity (intention to impress by good appearance); naturalness; sex-typicity; warm-heartedness; and seriousness (earnest vs. cheerful or serene). An overall hierarchy of sociosemiotic properties for the evocation of adjectives of beauty is charted. It is concluded that this information can be helpful in making distinctions between languages, and particularly in avoiding false or misleading equivalences. A brief bibliography is included. (MSE)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: In: Equality in Language Learning. Proceedings of the Nordic Conference of Applied Linguistics (5th, Jyvaskyla, Finland, June 4-7, 1987); see FL 020 065.