Summaries of Etnolingwistyka (Lublin) vol. 8 / 1996 — 16 / 2004
Irina Sandomirskaja, Idioma i kul’tura: v poiskach obščego osnovanija, Etnolingwistyka t. 8, s. 9-23, Lublin 1996.
IDIOM AND CULTURE:
IN SEARCH FOR GENERAL ASSUMPTIONS
In the paper a new concept, that of “idiom”, is proposed for the analysis of the relationship between language and culture. The concept is studied as a linguistic fact, i.e. narrowly understood idioms or other fixed phrases. Special emphasis is put on the semantic and pragmatic features of idiomatic expressions. The author delineates those features of idiom which indicate its closeness to culture. Also, the bases are presented on which the phenomenon of idiomatic use of lexical means and the phenomenon of culture can be treated as poles of the same homological symmetrical chain. A linguistic-cultural paradigm is proposed common to the linguistic idiom on the one hand and idioms specific to other codes, including non-verbal ones, on the other. By way of analogy to the system of macrocomponents of the meaning of an idiomatic expression, several levels for the comparative analysis of a cultural phenomenon are established. As an illustration, an analysis of specific cultural practices is presented. The analysis shows that characteristic features of culture are similar to those of linguistic idiom, which allows for the study and description of both within the framework of the same coherent theory.
Anna Wierzbicka, Między modlitwą a przekleństwem: O Jezu! i podobne wyrażenia na tle porównawczym, Etnolingwistyka t. 8, s. 25-39, Lublin 1996.
BETWEEN PRAYING AND SWEARING:
A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF JESUS! AND OTHER EXPRESSIONS
Interjections such as the Polish Mój Boże (‘Oh, my God!’), O Jezu! (‘Jesus!’) or Matko Boska! (lit. ‘Oh, Virgin Mary!’) are usually neglected in descriptions of language either as being “marginal” or “semantically empty” (or both at the same time). Contrary to such an attitude, in the paper the expressions are treated with due attention with rich analysable semantics being attributed to them. A detailed comparison of the Polish Mój Boże! and the German Mein Gott! illustrates the differences in the range of emotions present m each of the two expressions. It also indicates the need to conduct detailed comparative research on apparently equivalent interjections in various languages.
Additionally, the so far empirically unattested differences chosen for presentation in the paper lead to the formulation of a whole range of interesting and important questions relating to the correlation between conventionalised interjections on the one hand and culture, history and religion on the other.
Maciej Abramowicz, Jerzy Bartmiński, Francuski peuple i polski lud. Dwa pojęcia – dwa paradygmaty językowo-kulturowe, Etnolingwistyka t. 8, s. 41-56, Lublin 1996.
THE FRENCH PEUPLE AND THE POLISH LUD:
TWO LINGUISTIC-CULTURAL PARADIGMS
First, the linguistic-cultural paradigm is defined as a social cognitive model. It constitutes the basis for language and is connected with the specificity of national culture. Then a contrastive analysis is presented of key-words, the Polish lud and the French peuple. It has been carried out according to the principles of anthropological linguistics, by establishing their semantic aspects (facets ‘fasety’) and studying their realization.
The analysis is focused on the meaning “unprivileged social strata” because of its highest frequency in both languages and its historical and current ideological function. The material analyzed has been divided into two parts: the historical (until the end of the 19th c.) and the present-day.
There is a significant parallelism between the two languages: in both, the respective words are used by people from beyond and from above the community about which they talk However, several divergencies have also been discovered. The reference of the two nouns is different: the Polish lud mainly designates peasantry, whereas the French peuple primarily refers to lower social strata, in particular to the urban proletariat. The aspectual structure of the two concepts is different as well. In peuple the dominant aspects are the material and the moral ones, whereas in lud the social and cultural aspects are the most prominent. Finally, the realization of facets is different: peuple is characterized by intellectual inferiority but a certain kind of wisdom is attributed to lud.
The differences are responsible for different connotations and values which emerge from behind the concepts discussed, the Polish lud being more positive. They are also responsible for the different directions of their respective historical evolutions: the French peuple has become synonymous with nation, whereas the meaning of the Polish lud is closer to “society”, as opposed to the elite and the authorities.
Jolanta Szpyra, Dlaczego za i przeciw a nie przeciw i za - czyli o językowym obrazie świata Polaków, Anglików i Węgrów, Etnolingwistyka t. 8, s. 57-88, Lublin 1996.
WHY FOR AND AGAINST RATHER THAN AGAINST AND FOR:
ON THE LINGUISTIC PORTRAIT OF THE WORLD OF THE POLES,
ENGLISH, AND HUNGARIANS
The paper aims at examing the most important factors which determine the ordering of elements in Polish, English and Hungarian phrases such as za i przeciw / for and against / mellette vagy ellene. We demonstrate that in all three languages expressions of this kind are governed by the same semantic, cultural and phonological principles and that exceptions to them can be accounted for in terms of the complex interaction of these factors.
Jolanta Maćkiewicz, „A słowo stało się ciałem...”, czyli podstawowa jednostka języka w ujęciu potocznym, Etnolingwistyka t. 8, s. 89-97, Lublin 1996.
“AND THE WORD BECAME FLESH...”: THE BASIC UNIT
OF LANGUAGE IN ITS COLLOQUIAL UNDERSTANDING
There exist several idealized cognitive models connected with the notion of WORD: the communication model, the model(s) of speaking, the model(s) of performing actions by means of words, the model(s) of verbal creation. A detailed analysis of the first two models indicates that the notion of WORD is conceptualized as a RECEPTACLE (czerpać informacje z tekstu, ‘to extract information from a text’; przelewać myśli w słowa, lit. ‘to pour one’s thoughts into words’, ‘to dress one’s thoughts in words’), an ARTICLE of CLOTHING for thoughts (dawać myślom jakąś szatę słowną,, lit. ‘to give one’s thoughts a verbal dress’, ‘to dress one’s thoughts in words’) or a BODY for thoughts (wcielać myśli w słowa, lit. ‘to give one’s thoughts the bodily shape of words’). It is, then, conceptualized as a CONTAINER of various kinds. WORD is also conceptualized as an OBJECT (ktoś rzuca słowo, lit. ‘someone throws a word’, ‘says a single word’; ktoś przebiera w słowach, it. ‘someone winnows words’, ‘someone selects the proper words from among many of them’), a LIQUID (słowa płyną z ust, ‘words flow from the mouth’, słowa stygną na wargach, lit. ‘words cool/freeze on someone’s lips’, ‘words remain unspoken’). In all of these metaphors, WORD is treated as something which exists in or moves through space (the external space or the internal space of the human body), something experienced by means of sight or sometimes touch. In this sense, a WORD is a body, an inanimate or a living one, solid or liquid, and as such it has typically bodily characteristics: colour, temperature and weight.
Stanisława Niebrzegowska, Świat wartości sennika ludowego, Etnolingwistyka t. 8, s. 99-112, Lublin 1996.
THE WORLD OF VALUES BEHIND THE FOLK GENRE OF MINIMAL TEXT INCLUDING DREAM IMAGE AND ITS EXPLANATION
In the folk genre of minimal texts which include dream images and their explanations, one can find the world of values shared by members of a given folk culture. It can be reconstructed by capturing a system of oppositions. In general, something which is alive, young (new, fresh), light (white), clean, fat, ripe, undivided, healthy, dressed, raw and made of metal is explained as something good, or in more concrete terms as life, health, young age, wealth, bumper harvest, mutual understanding, a welcome guest, happiness, joy. On the other hand, what is dead, old (stale), dark (black), dirty, thin, unripe, divided, ill, naked, cooked, or made of paper, is manifested in reality as something bad, more specifically as death, illness, old age, poverty, bad crops, quarrel, an unwelcome guest, unhappiness, sorrow etc. At the top of the “ladder of values” extracted from the genre of minimal texts which include dream images and their explanations, one can find practical values, connected with securing the basic existential needs. The analysis of the explanations, then, corroborates the hypothesis that the central poisition in the folk model of values is occupied by life and its protection.
Anna Pajdzińska, Wrażenia zmysłowe jako podstawa metafor językowych, Etnolingwistyka t. 8, s. 113-130, Lublin 1996.
SENSORY EXPERIENCE AS THE BASIS FOR LINGUISTIC METAPHORS
The object of the analysis are linguistic metaphors (word-formational and semantic derivatives, phraseological expressions, conventionalized similes) treated as realizations of conceptual metaphors. Its aim is to establish what non-physical phenomena are conceptualized in Polish in terms of sensory perception. A clear connection can be observed between a particular sense (the quality of sensory perception) and the direction of metaphorical extensions. The sense of sight is the basis for conceptualizations relating to the domains of knowledge, control and following someone’s behaviour; the sense of hearing — the domain of broadly understood contact, the sense of taste — the domain of judgement, the sense of smell — the domain of drawing conclusions. Metaphorical extensions can also be treated as indirect evidence for the existence of a hierarchy of senses rooted in language, and of the cognitive value of particular sensory experiences.
Agnieszka Mikołajczuk, Kognitywny obraz gniewu we współczesnej polszczyźnie, Etnolingwistyka t. 8, s. 131-145, Lublin 1996.
COGNITIVE PORTRAIT OF “ANGER” IN CONTEMPORARY POLISH
The aim of the paper is to establish what concepts and image schemata are utilized by speakers of Polish to understand and talk about anger. The study is based on the material of Polish terms for anger in its various shades (mainly phraseological expressions) as well as for patterns of behaviour connected with it. We make use of the concepts and methods proposed by Lakoff (G. Lakoff, 1987, Women, Fire and Dangerous Things. What Categories Reveal About the Mind, Chicago: Chicago University Press) in the chapter on the structure of the English concept of ANGER. In the main body of the paper, owing to the delexicalization of some fixed expressions, it has been possible to present the physiological symptoms of anger, “frozen” in language. It has also been possible to reconstruct the metonymies and conceptual metaphors which aid our thinking and talking about anger. The final result of the analysis is the designation of three groups of factors which constitute the cognitive portrait of anger in Polish. These are:
1. Simple image schemata: EQUILIBRIUM, CONTAINER, MOVEMENT (UP/ DOWN).
2. Concepts which serve as the key to understanding anger (the source of metaphors): PHYSICAL PAIN, WEIGHT (BURDEN?), BODILY ILLNESS, RABIES, MADNESS, POISONING, STORMY WEATHER, DANGEROUS ANIMAL, ENEMY, DEVIL, TRAP, PRISON, SEA, FIRE, HOT LIQUID.
3. Various aspects of the concept of anger: the cause, the causer and the object of the emotion, the recipient, the subject, the emotion itself and its evaluation, the degree of its intensiveness, its depth and permanence, the possibilty of bringing it under control, and its symptoms.
G. I. Dovgjalo, Svinec (olovo) v ritualach indoevropejcev, Etnolingwistyka t. 8, s. 147-157, Lublin 1996.
LEAD AND TIN IN INDO-EUROPEAN RITUALS
The article is devoted to magic characteristics attributed to lead and tin in Indo-European nations: the Hittites, the ancient Greeks, Hindus and mediaeval eastern Slavs. Typologically close data from non-Indo-European traditions are also mentioned: Sumerian, that of the Semites from Mesopotamia and late Semitic traditions — also biblical. It is shown that according to common beliefs, lead objects, especially plates, could serve as protection against the evil forces of magic by reflecting their influence. A widespread pratice of closing the evil forces in a receptacle with a lead cover is also mentioned, as well as the use of lead in burial practices of Indo-European nations.
Andrej Prochorov, Chettskij mif „O carice Kanesa i 30 ee synov’jach” i ego belorusskaja parallel’, Etnolingwistyka t. 8, s. 159-165, Lublin 1996.
THE HITTITE MYTH OF “THE TSARINA OF THE CITY OF KANESZ AND HER THIRTY SONS” AND ITS BYELORUSSIAN PARALLEL
In the paper a parallelism is proposed between the Hittite myth of thirty sons of the tsarina of the city of Kanesz and the Byelorussian tale “Mag-Małyszok”, which deals with the miraculous birth and life of the thirty-first son of an elderly couple. On the basis of W. Propp’s thesis, which states that “there are traces of weak forms of social life in the tale”, a number of historically-attested examples of dividing the whole into thirty parts are mentioned (in ancient Rome, among mediaeval Slavs, or in pre-colonial Uganda). Some motifs connected with the number 30 (33) in East-Slavonic and Irish folklore as well as in the Old Testament are also analyzed. A conclusion is drawn that the myth of thirty brothers, reflected in Hittite and Byelorussian texts, formed the basis for distinguishing thirty communal types within the Indo-European group.
Ryszard Tokarski, Językowy obraz świata a niektóre założenia kognitywizmu, Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s. 7-24, Lublin 1997/1998.
THE LINGUISTIC PICTURE OF THE WORLD AND SOME ASSUMPTIONS OF COGNITIVISM
One of the basic tasks in the study of the linguistic picture of the world is to shape a word’s semantic definition in such a way as to reveal how the word is or may be understood in a particular context. In the paper, a model of an open cognitive definition capable of capturing all loose connotations is proposed. On the basis of Polish colour terms, a principle of mutual motivation (predictability) of semantic components is presented. The principle consists in reconstructing the inner hierarchy of semantic components and establishing semantic interrelationships among them. The prototypical colour template influenced a multidirectional development of semantic connotations and motivated successive transformational chains specified to various degrees. Hence the global interpretational frame of a lexical unit consists of a cluster of specific complementary subframes. Each of the postulated semantic components either motivated or was motivated by other components of the frame.
Zbysław Muszyński, Indywidualizm w ujmowaniu języka i kultury jako konsekwencja kognitywizmu, Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s. 25-49, Lublin 1997/1998.
THE INDIVIDUALISTIC APPROACH TO LANGUAGE AND
CULTURE AS A CONSEQUENCE OF COGNITIVISM
The paper, organized around the background of the traditional opposition between individualism and holism, discusses the consequences of cognitivism for the study of language. The validity of the opposition in linguistics has been recognized since the times of de Saussure, whose arguments in favour of holism were, however, unconvincing. Chomsky’s theories of language, on the other hand, are individualistic in nature. Sociolinguistic theories, in turn, in spite of stressing the social context, include the irremovable factor of individual speech competence. An analysis of cultural phenomena does not provide arguments against individualism, either, as cognitivists assume that there is no culture beyond individual conceptual systems. Cultural paradigms are merely results of experience being captured into relevant conceptual schemata. A distinction is drawn between individualistic and institutional explication. The former relates to motives, desires or anxieties of individuals, the latter to an individual’s convictions about myths, ideas etc. The overall line of argument presented in the paper is that someone studying culture in a cognitivist fashion must be ready to accept a change in the subject matter of his or her research. The focus shifts from social institutions (supraindividual entities) to individual conceptual systems and subjective matters of the mind.
Lidija Nevskaja, Semantičeskaja struktura balto-slavjanskogo pogrebal’nogo pričitanija, Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s. 51-66, Lublin 1997/1998.
THE SEMANTIC STRUCTURE OF BALTO-SLAVIC FUNERAL LAMENTS
The present article, concerned with the semantic structure of archaic funeral lamentations preserved in the traditional folk culture of Lithuanians and Eastern Slavs (Belarussians, Russians and Ukrainians), is of semiotic rather than comparative-historical character. Its aim is to demonstrate how the verbal text of the funeral lamentation, a constituent in the whole ritual event, is determined by the system of ideas relevant in a given. It deals with the question of which elements of the rite, escaping the consciousness of its participants, are explicated and concretised on the level of the verbal text.
The key figure in the lamentations is the deceased, who is presented as a ‘guest’. The word guest (Russian gost’) expresses in its deep semantic structure the transient character of man’s existential status, and records the moment of crossing the borderline between the community of “friends” and “strangers”. The deceased person is treated as a guest, the Russian phrase sobirat’sya v gosti / v dorogu is a methapor of death. Typical of the transition rites is the elevation of the person’s status, naming the deceased with the words knez, knehynya, and the motif of the road that the deceased covers from the sphere of life to that of death. The starting point of that road in the lamentations is the home, the place of the living, opposed to the grave and presented in detail in the lamentations; the border point is the door (the gate), while the alien places are the marshes, the forest, the mountain, and the sea. The road to the hereafter has to return: parents wait there.
The basic sense of the traditional Balto-Slavic funeral rite is formed by the social opposites friend/stranger (friend/foe) and the fundamental existential opposition alive/dead, life/death. It contains synonymous plot motifs (Russian mikrosyzuhety) based on the idea of transition from one pole to the other. From the linguistic point of view these are predicative constitutions of the type “it is warm : it is / gets cold”, “it is light : it is / gets dark”. On the one side there is home, summer, day, sun and life, on the other – road, wind, night, death. The constituents of such oppositions make up paradigmatic series from which texts are generated. The principle of producing texts of lamentations is a repetition of eqivalent syntagms: the girl’s face blushes, the garland shows green, the ring glitters etc. vs. the face pales, the garland withers etc.
Mythopoetic consciousness reflected in the archaic lamentations creates the isomorphism of the human body and cosmos. These two different spheres are combined by the predicates “live” and “die”, “cease to act”, “walk” and “cease to walk”, “undergo destruction”, “revert to the wild state”. Through this isomorphism the overriding meaning of death as destruction is encoded by the variant series of plot motifs of the type “the house turns derelict”, “the house becomes empty”, “the road becomes overgroun with grass”, “the tree goes down”, “the plant withers”.
Margarita Žujkova, Nominacija smerti i archaičeskoe myšlenie, Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s. 67-80, Lublin 1997/1998.
NAMES OF DEATH AND ARCHAIC THINKING
The names of death in Slavonic languages are culturally determined and contain reflexes of archaic thinking. The author presents two series of names and two different interpretations of death preserved in Slavonic languages and cultures: the “natural”, prepared, good death named with the words based on the proto-Slavonic root *mr-/*mer-/*mir- (Polish śmierć, Ukrainian and Russian smerl’, Russian phrase krasnaya smrl’, Polish dobra śmierć), and the “unnatural”, often surprising and bad death named with the words based on the proto-Slavonic root *gyb-/*gúb-/*gub- (Polish ginąć, zginąć, Russian pogibnut’, Ukrainian hynuty, pohybel). The author analyses in more detail the other type of name, which has interstingly developed from the meaning of being curved/crooked (well preserved in the Polish verbs giąć, zginać, czynić nieprostym, wykrzywiać [bend, make uneven, crooked]) and the accompanying sense of being incomplete (the proto-Slavonic word *kriv-, which also meant ‘lame’, can be etymologically tied with *kriti- ‘cut’) through the sense of ‘suffer’, ‘cause to suffer’ (cf. Polish ginąć, gubić [perish, cause to die]) towards ‘die’ and ‘cause death’. Such a semantic evolution was culturally and mythologically rooted in the system of Old Slavonic oppositions of right/left, straight/crooked that applied not only to the physical but also to the social and ethical spheres and were subject to higher-order evaluation in terms of good/evil as attested by the folklore sources (proverbs, fairy-stories, magic spells).
Anna B. Burzyńska, Jan Kamieniecki, Wpływ przeszłości na językowy obraz śmierci ludzi i zwierząt w polszczyźnie, Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s. 81-92, Lublin 1997/1998.
THE INFLUENCE OF THE PAST ON THE LINGUISTIC PICTURE OF DEATH OF PEOPLE AND ANIMALS IN POLISH
The paper is an attempt at a linguistically-based reconstruction of the schema for the conceptualization of death in Polish. The perspective of the research on the contemporary understanding of death is broadened through several factors. These include the etymological exploration of the Polish lexemes of śmierć (‘death’), umrzeć (‘to die’), zdechnąć (‘to die’ – about animals or with disrespect about people), the ancient tradition, Slavonic beliefs (the concepts of the soul as breath, wind and the association of wind-soul-last breath which binds all three) as well as the Christain viewpoint. Already in pre-Slavonic reality there existed a linguistic mechanism of weakening and alleviating the terror of death, deducible from the basic meaning of the root *mrl-’destroy’. The original etymological model death is evil (destruction) is continued as a linguistic model death is an enemy, which is in turn reevaluated into death is a friend. The contemporary fashion of defining the concept of death is based on concrete elements. As it is typical of the 20th-century medicalization, it allows one to advance a hypothesis of a similar understanding of the death of animals and people.
Anna Krzyżanowska, Ostatnia podróż – czyli polska i francuska metaforyka śmierci, Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s. 93-109, Lublin 1997/1998.
THE LAST JOURNEY: POLISH AND FRENCH METAPHORS OF DEATH
An attempt is made to describe the various aspects of linguistic means of expressing death. Similarities and differences between Polish and French are investigated.
Several semantic groupings have been discriminated in the material collected: death as a journey, as falling asleep, as the turning point or a change in one’s mode of existence, or as plunging into darkness. Death is also seen as the ‘flame of life’ being extinguished, or a mechanism symbolizing the human organism which ceases to function. The motivation behind metaphorical meanings of phraseological units is culture-based and on the whole transparent. All set phrases contain the common element of ‘the end (of something)’ and belong to the category constituted by the concept of change.
Similarities between Polish and French linguistic imagery of death derive from the common background of European culture and the universality of human experience. Differences stem from dissimilar intellectual attitudes towards the phenomenon. The common reference points are Christianity, Greek and Roman mythologies, a dualistic view of the human being and the knowledge about the natural world.
In both languages death is portrayed as falling asleep and a journey.
In French phraseology, however, one can see a more conspicuous influence of the mechanistic view of the human being, a greater stress on social and legal aspects of death as well as the presentation of death from the perspective of everyday life. It also seems that in French grotesque and drastic elements in portraying death are more frequent and pronounced.
Zuzana Profantová, Językowy obraz śmierci na Słowacji, Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s.111-120, Lublin 1997/1998.
THE LINGUISTIC PICTURE OF DEATH IN SLOVAKIA
Because it is based on religious and mythological foundations, the traditional picture of death in Slovakian culture is different from the scientific one. Its roots go back to pre-Slavonic traditions (death personified as a woman in white) and the Christian culture of the Baroque. The picture of death is shaped through linguistic means in multi-genre folk texts and incarnated through customs (the spring drowning of the doll called Marzanna, the name being derived from mary ‘bier’) and beliefs (a demonic figure known as Smrtka, the root of the name being the same as that of the word meaning ‘death’, or zoomorphic representations of death as a cat, hare, goat etc.). In ballads and funeral songs death is portrayed hyperbolically with the stress on its ugliness and indifference to attempts of bribery. Slovakian proverbs and phraseological units shape the image of death in accordance with the European tradition built on Latin and Christian foundations.
Marzena Marczewska, Dąb – drzewo zmarłych (z rozważań nad językowo-kulturowym obrazem dębu), Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s. 121-134, Lublin 1997/1998.
THE OAK: THE TREE OF THE DECEASED (LINGUISTIC AND CULTURAL DIVAGATIONS ON THE PICTURE OF THE OAK)
The paper focuses on those aspects of the oak which cause it to be treated not only as a tree of exceptional significance in folk culture, but primarily as a tree connected in peculiar ways with the dead. The frequency of the occurance of an oak, especially a green, living oak, as a sepulchral tree in folk texts necessitates an inquiry into the motivation for such a localization and a search for an explication of the causes of burying people specifically under this tree. At the same time, it is important to realize that the sepulchral characteristic of the oak is unilateral: graves are situated under oaks, rather than an oak being planted on a grave to commemorate the deceased, the circumstances of his or her death etc.
Tadeusz Piersiak, Paraliterackie wizje śmierci i umierania w kulturze sarmackiej, Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s. 135-147, Lublin 1997/1998.
PARALITERARY IMAGES OF DEATH AND DYING IN SARMATIAN CULTURE
The paper attempts to reconstruct concepts, images, beliefs and patterns of behaviour connected with death in Sarmatian culture. The judgements are based on an analysis of a specific group of texts: funeral sermons, textbooks on spiritual life and hagiographic writings.
The dominant model of a good death is a heroic one, perservence in one’s social role till the end, loyal fulfilment of one’s duties. With time, the model undergoes a shift from grandiose heroism, based on Biblical and ancient motifs, to heroism supplemented by miraculous interventions of supernatural forces.
An important ideological and artistic problem was a conflict between the ‘taming’ of death and using it as a means of frightening someone. As the latter prevailed in Sarmatian culture, the image of death was concretized and materialized.
Jerzy Bartmiński, Dusze rzewnie zapłakały. Odmiany gatunkowe pieśni o wędrówce dusz szukających miejsca wiecznego spoczynku, Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s. 149-168, Lublin 1997/1998.
THE SOULS CRIED PLAINTIVELY. GENRE VARIATION OF THE SONG OF THE WANDERING SOULS SEARCHING FOR A PLACE OF ETERNAL REST
The song of unrepentant souls wandering after death in search of a place of eternal lest, seventeen variants of which were written in the years 1843-1996, functioned in the oral repertoire of performing vagrants, and later in folk culture. When the vagrant tradition disappeared, the song’s function and character changed: it became associated with All Souls’ Day or, even more often, with the cult of the Virgin Mary. The picture of the netherworld in the song is shaped differently, in accordance with its genre characteristics: the situational function and the internal purpose for performing it. When it is conceived of as a religious legend with an explicit educational aim, the emphasis is laid on the punishment for sins and on being unable to find a place for oneself in this world after death. It is consistent with the prototypical picture of the world present in archaic oaths taken on the earth and sky, fire and water. The variants associated with All Soul’s Day introduce a Christain picture of the netherworld emphasizing the motif of the purgatory. If, on the other hand, the song is used in the cult of the Virgin Mary, the wandering of the soul takes place in the more familiar landscape conventionally associated with this cult: forests, hills, corn, meadows and flowers. The picture of the netherworld significantly depends on the song’s genre.
Kazimierz Długosz, Językowy obraz wojny w inskrypcjach nagrobnych i pieśniach ludowych, Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s. 169-192, Lublin 1997/1998.
THE LINGUISTIC PICTURE OF WAR IN TOMBSTONE INSCRIPTIONS AND FOLK SONGS
The paper aims at capturing the lexical, semantic and cultural similarities and differences between the presentations of World War II events in tombstone inscriptions and folk epic songs. The study is based on a collection of over 10,000 tombstone inscriptions of Pomorze Zachodnie (the Polish part of Pomerania) and a collection of war songs of the Kielce region (south-central Poland).
The lingustic picture of war in tombstone inscriptions is rather simple and narrow. The informative function reigns supreme. In war songs, the picture, although simple as well, is heavily charged from the emotional perspective. It is characterized by univocality of judgment, rich vocabulary and phraseology, sharp style and poignant expressions. Both types of text are addressed to future generations in order to commemorate important events and ordinary people worthy of the highest respect. They preserve memories about people and pass down the family, local and national ethos to prosperity.
Jacek Kolbuszewski, Współczesne nekrologi pożegnalne, Etnolingwistyka t. 9/10, s. 193-210, Lublin 1997/1998.
CONTEMPORARY ‘FAREWELL’ OBITUARIES
The function of obituaries published in Polish press in recent years (1994-1997) has been shifting from informative to that of a farewell. A new variety of an obituary has come into being: a ‘farewell obituary’. Its typical features are a heavy emotional load and a more personal and private character: they are achieved through the use of vocabulary indicative of the feelings of the mourners (‘with sorrow’, ‘with profound grief’, ‘truly in pain’), poetic names of death (‘departure’), or diminutives with traditional formulas (‘late X’). The addressee of such a farewell obituary is often the deceased him- or herself, addressed by his or her first name in the vocative (‘Farewell, dear Jude’) without the full onomasiological identification of the person. This is paralleled by an equally enigmatic way of specifying the author of the obituary: ‘Darling we bid you farewell, Grace and Stan’. Such a hermetical way of coding published texts results in the latter having two differently conceived addressees: the direct one, i.e. the deceased, and the virtual one, i.e. the readers. The new convention is indicative of a desire to overcome the drama of separation by suggesting a possibility of a second encounter with the person in some vague future. Therefore it may be seen as a peculiar type of substitute for funeral speeches, a phenomenon well known in Polish funeral tradition.
Jolanta Maćkiewicz, Co to jest „językowy obraz świata”, Etnolingwistyka t. 11, s. 7-24, Lublin 1999.
WHAT IS A/THE “LINGUISTIC WORLDVIEW”?
The concept of the linguistic worldview still remains lergely undefined. To provide a satisfactory definition, it is necessary to specify its subject, the relationship between the representation of the reality present in the picture to the reality itself, as well as the ontological status of the ontological status of the linguistic world model. It is also crucial to specify the components which the linguistic worldview comprises: pictures of objects (i. e. their features and modes of existence), general ways of organization (categories, type of rationality), the “naive: knowledge. The picture thus created is heterogenic, multi-layer and multi-aspectual. It can be reconstructed on the basis of variously conventionalized linguistic facts and, additionally, cultural data. Out of many possible approches to interpreting these data, cognitive methodology appears to be the most useful.
Jerzy Bartmiński, Irina Sandomirskaja, Veronika Telija, Ojczyzna w polskim i rosyjskim językowym obrazie świata, Etnolingwistyka t. 11, s. 25-49, Lublin 1999.
MOTHERLAND IN THE POLISH AND RUSSIAN LINGUISTIC WORDLVIEWS
The authors present the first part of a contrastive Polish-Russian analysis of the concept expressed in English alternatively as homeland, motherland, mother country, or fatherland. They assume that in specific languages there is a variable development is European concept, derived from the Latin patria. The development is linked with the concept’s position in the ‘conceptual sphere’ (Lichaczew’s term), which contributes to the national (Polish, Russian) linguistic worldview.
The Polish lexeme ojczyzna is characterized by a rich multidimensional base content (the spatial, social, cultural, institutional dimensions), profiled at the level of social discourse, which results in expressions like ojczyzna domowa (lit. ‘home motherland’), ojczyzna lokalna (‘local motherland’), ojczyzna regionalna (‘regional motherland’), mała ojczyzna (‘little motherland’), ojczyzna narodowa (‘national motherland’), ojczyzna publiczna (‘public motherland’).
The Polish word has three Russian counterparts: rodina, otechestvo and otchizna. Rodina refers to a space tamed by people as individuals and as a nation, in otechestvo the institutional state dimension is dominant, whereas otchizna, a borrowing from Polish, refers to the national historical and cultural heritage. The latter is the closest Russian equivalent to the Polish ojczyzna, as they are both associated with the Slavonic myth of mother-earth and the prototype of the home as one’s place of origin.
The cultural dimension in Polish and the state dimension in Russian are dominant in the semantic field (‘conceptual sphere’) of homeland/motherland, the difference resulting from different histories of the two nations.
Irina Sandomirskaja, Rodina, otečestvo, otčizna v diskursivnych praktikach sovremiennogo russkogo jazyka. Opyt analiza kul’turnoj idiomy, Etnolingwistyka t. 11, s. 51-68, Lublin 1999.
RODINA, OTECHESTVO, OTCHIZNA IN DISCURSIVE PRACTICES IN CONTEMPORARY RUSSIAN: TOWARDS AN ANALYSIS OF CULTURAL IDIOMS
After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, Russia made its comeback onto the political maps of the world. Referring to Jacques Derrida’s observation, the author says that if in the term Soviet Union there were no ethnic, national and religious components to constitute the basis for a collective identity of the country’s inhabitants, the return of the traditional name Rossiya (Russia) renewed the practice of identifying oneself with the others in national terms. Furthermore, the meaning of Rossiya and russkiy actualized the sememe ‘ethnicity’. However, the school subject until recently called “the history of the Soviet Union” is now officially referred to not as “the history of Russia” but “the history of the homeland”, istoriya Otechestva. Why has this term been chosen out of the three possible Russian words: rodina, otechestvo, otchizna?
The autor treats the words as ‘cultural idioms’ in the sense discoussed in her article Idioma i kultura: v poiskakh obshchego osnovaniya (in Etnolingwistyka 8), analyzes them conceptually and narratologically, to reveal their specific ideological and political meanings.
Michael Fleischer, Symbolika kolektywna w Polsce i w Niemczech (porównanie interkulturowe), Etnolingwistyka t. 11, s. 69-106, Lublin 1999.
COLLECTIVE SYMBOLISM IN POLAND AND GERMANY: A CROSS-CULTURAL STUDY
“Collective symbolism” is understood as linguistic signs with axiological load, positive in truth, development, peace or negative in hatred, loneliness, war etc., both groups being important in Polish and German national cultures. The questionnaire-type research, carried out in Poland in 1993 and in Germany in 1994-1995, discussed in greater detail in the author’s Das System der polnischen Kollektivsymbolik. Eine Empirische Untersuchwung (1996), constitutes a part of a wider comparative research scheme comprising similar prospective research in Byelorussia and Russia. Such research involves three stages: from determining the set of collective symbols, via reconstructing their hierarchy, to approximating their semantics.
Having outlined the basic aspects of his theory of discourse in the introductory section of the article, the author presents the most important results of the empirical research. Germans have been discovered to value symbols of everyday life, such as a car, money, health or nature. Poles, on the other hand, value ethical symbols, such as freedom, honour or love. A great number of symbols is common to the two nations: friendship, truth, peace, protection of the environment, freedom, independence, etc. However, there is a marked difference between eastern and western Germany, the preferences of the Polish people, i. e. a highly positive attitude towards tolerance, justice or faith, being closer to those of the Germans from the eastern part of the country.
Žanna O. Jankovs’ka, Poetična simvolika chliba v ukrains’komu obrjadovomu fol’klori, Etnolingwistyka t. 11, s. 107-128, Lublin 1999.
THE POETIC SYMBOLISM OF BREAD IN UKRAINIAN FOLKLORE OF RITUALS
Bread has long been a symbol of the spirituality, moral purity and inner culture of the Ukrainian people. In Ukrainian folklore the symbolism of bread is, among others, connected with the cult of the sun and the moon. The round shape of bread, resembling that of the sun, is symbolic in itself. The cult of a symbolic deity of a new rich harvest is the source of a Christmas custom of bringing into the house a sheaf of corn, such as wheat. Certain songs exhibit a mythological symbol of bread in the system of the ‘astral trinity’, an old pagan as well as a new Christian one.
In order to demonstrate the inner poetic meaning of the symbolism of bread in Ukrainian folklore, the author has analyzed numerous Ukrainian ritual songs connected with particular periods in the calendar of rituals. These include Christmas and New Year wishing songs (koladki and shchedrivki), songs of the week before Lent, songs associated with Easter (vesnyanki), those sung on Whit Sunday (rusalne pisni) or on the night of the summer solstice (kupalne pisni), songs connected with St. Peter and Paul’s day (petrivchane pisni), songs of harvest, mid harvest, home, as well as those sung at wedding receptions, valuable for their rich content.
Miroslava Malocha, Mifologičeskaja jazyčeskaja i christianskaja simvolika verby v vostočnoslavjanskich i pol’skich frazeologizmach, Etnolingwistyka t. 11, s. 129-138, Lublin 1999.
MYTHOLOGICAL, LINGUISTIC AND CHRISTIAN SYMBOLISM OF ‘WILLOW’ IN EAST SLAVONIC AND POLISH PHRASEOLOGICAL UNITS
The article attempts to describe cultural connotations of phrases with the words wierzba or wierzbowy (‘willow’ as a noun or adjective, ‘willowy’, ‘willowish’, ‘willow-like’). The analysis comprises linguistic data, such as phrases, proverbs, fairy tales, as well as descriptions of beliefs and practices.
In Slavonic culture the symbolism of ‘willow’ is diversified. On the one hand it is associated with fertility, quick growth, liveliness and physical flexibility, but on the other with infertility, deafness, silence and death. In East Slavonic languages and in Polish, phrases with the word meaning ‘willow’ express lack, a black force or emptiness. In Christian customs and practices, however, the word connotes life, joy and Sunday. In Byelorussian, Ukrainian and Polish phrasal expressions, beside the component ‘willow’ the component ‘pear tree’ is also frequent, both being associated with an evil force. Additionally, Polish and Ukrainian concepts contain the components ‘devil’ and ‘dry’. Furthermore, there is equivalence between ‘willow’ and ‘palm tree’: the East Slavonic Verbnoe voskresnye (lit. ‘willow Sunday’) is paralleled by the Polish Niedziela Palmowa (Palm Sunday).
Libertas Klimka, Vytautas Straižys, Obraz kosmosu u dawnych Bałtów, Etnolingwistyka t. 11, s. 139-164, Lublin 1999.
THE PICTURE OF THE UNIVERSE AMONG THE ANCIENT BALTS
The article presents views of the ancient Balts on the structure and origin of the world, reconstructed on the basis of archeological excavation sites, folklore, mythology and linguistic data. Four to five thousand years ago, the ancestors of today’s Lithuanians and Latvians had already developed views, based on religious and mythological beliefs, on the relationship between humans and nature, as well as the origin and structure of the world. Their interest in the universe developed into astronomical observations, a search for regularities in celestial phenomena and the development of a calendar.
Jonas Vaiškūnas, Etnoastronomia litewska, Etnolingwistyka t. 11, s. 165-175, Lublin 1999.
The article deals with Lithuanian views on stars and constellations. Ancient views, reconstructed on the basis of beliefs and certain genres of Lithuanian folklore, especially riddles, converge with ideas about stars entertained by primitive peoples.
More recent views, based on Lithuanian and Lithuanian-German dictionaries from the seventeenth to nineteenth century, as well as nineteenth and twentieth-century folklore and ethnographic records, have made it possible to compile a dictionary of star and constellation names with their denotations or the information that the latter cannot be established. Additionally, through an analysis of the aforementioned sources it has become possible to specify what stars look like, what their position and function is and when they appear in the sky.
Aleksej V. Judin, Mifotoponimija russkich zagavorov, Etnolingwistyka t. 11, s. 177-196, Lublin 1999.
THE MYTHOLOGICAL TOPONYMY OF RUSSIAN MAGIC SPELLS
The article describes the toponymy of a particularly archaic genre of Russian folklore, the magic spell. The traditional world model presented in the texts is a series of concentric spaces (locus), whose sacral character increases towards the centre. The description begins with mythological toponyms representing the outer locus, usually presented as the sea, a city or river, the latter functioning as the border with “the other world”. It then proceeds to mythological toponyms of the middle locus presented as an island or mountain. Finally, it focuses on names of objects from the inner locus, comparable to Axis (Arbor) Mundi, where, apart from onomastically unnamed objects, the spells contain references to stones and trees bearing proper names. According to the author, the invocation of names magically opens the door to the centre of the world, where the person uttering the spell is met by a wizard-helper (defender), which guarantees the success of the action for which the spell is cast.
I. V. Kiseleva, Pticy v lirike Anny Achmatovoj, Etnolingwistyka t. 11, s. 197-204, Lublin 1999.
BIRDS IN ANNA ACHMATOVA’S POETRY
In Achmatova’s poetry, the image of a bird is symbolic. An analysis of contexts with the words meaning ‘bird’, those referring to specific species, e.g. crow, dove, cuckoo, crane, swallow, lapwing, etc.., as well as those naming mythological creatures, e.g. phoenix, revealed three different uses of the motif of a bird.
First, the images of birds perform new poetic functions: they give a mythological character to places (via references to birds typical of Russian folk tradition), augment auditory aspects of space (by referring to bird voices), and evoke the atmosphere of the lack of life in a particular space (achieved by emphasizing the lack of birds in that space).
Second, the image of a bird is evoked in descriptions of women, whose behaviour and body parts are compared to the behaviour and body parts of a bird; female bird names are also transferred onto the woman. The technique brings about a new poetic and painterly effect, facilitating descriptions of very complex and otherwise undescribable emotions.
Third, the image of a bird appears as a symbol of the soul, which in Achmatova’s poetry is referred to by bird names, e. g. swallow, white lapwing, dove, or generally by the figure of a white bird.
Marija A. Dmitrovskaja, Sootnošenie kategorij mesta i prostranstva y A. Platonova, Etnolingwistyka t. 11, s. 205-212, Lublin 1999.
THE MUTUAL RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE CATEGORIES OF PLACE AND SPACE A. PLATONOV’S WRITINGS
Vacillations between the concrete and the abstract, typical of Platonov, are described on the basis of the word mesto ‘place’, a common word in his writings (e.g. in the novel Chevenghur it occurs 187 times). If the Newtonian idea of “space”, also present in Platonov’s works, drifts semantically towards unboundedness and void, “place” is always bounded, concrete and rather tightly linked with objects. The relationship between places and things is so close that their names may be used interchangeably. Furthermore, Platonov’s use of language confirms the relationship between a particular place, an object and the movement of the latter. A human being is situated in concrete places rather than in abstract space.
Władimir N.Toporow, Ewolucja rosyjskiej samoświadomości trwa, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 11-24, Lublin 2000.
THE EVOLUTION OF THE RUSSIAN SELF-AWARENESS IS IN PROGRESS
It is particularly important to understand ourselves, with all our virtues and vices, to confront the picture thus emerging – that of the Russian history, culture and the national “soul” – with results of parallel inquiries conducted within other national traditions of comparable import. One can meet others with good results only when one’s own idiosyncratic features and abilities have become known. Such meeting just now should be understood as an imperative of the present times.
Jerzy Bartmiński, Polska dola – rosyjska sud’ba, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 25-37, Lublin 2000.
THE POLISH DOLA AND THE RUSSIAN SUD’BA
The sharp contrast between the semantics of the Polish los and Russian sud’ba, drawn by Anna Wierzbicka in Język i naród. Polski ,,los” i rosyjska ,,sud’ba”, as well as in Semantics, Culture and Cognition, must be reinterpreted in two respects. First, on the linguistic plane, other important concepts, such as dola, must be taken into account, which function in a wider conceptual universe to refer to people’s existential situation. Second, in the sphere of sociocultural and historical correlates of linguistic concepts, social factors rather than a mythical national spirit should be placed in focus. The Polish idea of los, close to the Latin fortuna, has noble-romantic connotations: it is associated with playing, drawing lots, good luck, the unknown and the courage of taking risks. Dola, which since the 19th c. has had negative connotations in expressions polska dola `the Polish fate’, or chłopska dola `the peasant fate’, is a continuation of the semantics of the Latin fatum and as such refers to a God-given situation, difficult to change. If the Polish los does indeed contrast with the Russian sud’ba, the Polish dola, now associated with the “simple people” who do not benefit from the political and economic transformation, is largely convergent with the Russian concept. The disntiction between los and dola rests on a general cultural opposition of coincidence and inevitability, a gift and destiny, an opposition present in both cultures.
Marharyta Żujkowa, Semantyka spotkania w tradycyjnej kulturze Słowian, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 39-52, Lublin 2000.
THE SEMANTICS OF MEETINGS IN TRADITIONAL SLAVONIC CULTURE
In traditional cultures, both planned and accidental meetings are understood as semiotic events. The scenario of a meeting is threfore subjected to an etiquette of cultural rules. Following Bayburin, meetings are here classified according to the degree of semiotic load into maximally meaningful (ritual meetings), minimally meaningful (informal and casual) and those whose semiotic value varies. The ones from the first category are prognosticative and may reveal future to the participants (meeting a woman with empty buckets forecasts misfortune, meeting a wolf – good fortune). In the article, examples are analyzed from the East-Slavonic tradition and attention is paid to numerous beliefs concerning the hidden meaning of meetings present in language (in lexis and proverbs).
Jörg Zinken, Nie mam nic przeciwko obcym, ale ci obcy nie są stąd. Konceptualizacja obcości w dyskursie prasowym w Polsce i w Niemczech, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 53-62, Lublin 2000.
I DON’T MIND FOREIGNERS, BUT THEY AREN’T FROM HERE.
THE CONCEPTUALIZATION OF FOREIGNESS IN JOURNALISTIC DISCOURSE IN POLAND AND GERMANY
The article analyzes the opposition US – THEM, fundamental for the linguistic worldview, in chosen texts of the Polish and German ideological (political) discourse. It is accepted, following van Dijk, that ideological discourse is characterized by establishing and reproducing the distinction between one’s own group and other groups. The function of ideological discourse is, on the one hand, to legitimize actions and beliefs of one’s own group and, on the other, to delegitimize actions and beliefs of other groups.
It seems that such conceptualizations of US and THEM are accepted in popular Polish and German magazines (Wprost and Spiegel, respectively). Depending on who is to be considered as belonging to US and who is to be excluded, these abstract concepts are realized in a functionally changeable manner.
Eva Krekovičova, Polityka o folklóre – folklór v politike (na príklade slovenska), Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 63-76, Lublin 2000.
POLITICS ABOUT FOLKLORE, FOLKLORE IN POLITICS. THE CASE OF SLOVAKIA
Political and ideological changes in European post-communist countries, which experience transition from totalitarianism to democracy, are also reflected in the respective national languages. The artricle analyzes the functioning of the Slovak word for folklore, which, along with other stereotypical and cliché expressions like “the people”, “nation”, “ethnic” and “national character”, “Slovak identity”, have become a tool of propaganda and political struggle. Since the 1950’s, folklore in Slovakia was associated with the communist ideology, and under Mechiar with extremely nationalistic and anti-European politics. Therefore, it grew to be associated with stage-like folklorism, anachronistic forms of culture, commercialization of tradition and has eventually led to a devaluation of the concept, which has acquired negative connotations. Folklore as a pejorative term appeared in the language of politicians and journalists especially during the campaign of 1998. Terms like “political folklore” or “folkloristic situation” were used to refer to phenomena of little importance, marginal, anachronistic, provincial or even antidemocratic. Such was the practice among some of the opposition, whose members, recruiting from the intelligentsia, made use of an old European stereotype of an uncouth peasant. After 1998, the term has been used in political discourse less frequently. Folklore is also present in pop culture, especially in pop, jazz and rock music. Traditional folk songs, as well as those referring to the socialist era and state collective farms, are being remade for political reasons.
Jurij D. Apresjan, Mnogoznačnost’ i sinonimija slova ljubit’, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 77-95, Lublin 2000.
ON THE NUMEROUS MEANINGS AND SYNONYMY OF THE RUSSIAN LYUBIT’ ‘TO LOVE’
Zhe author of the present article continues two programmatic and theoretic-methodological features of N. I. Tolstoy’s research stance: (1) the idea of a close link between language and perception of the world, i.e. of a linguistic worldview, and (2) the postulate of the linguistic integrity of an object. Both of these constitute the basis of a new dictionary of Russian synonyms, coedited by the abovementioned author. The article presents a picture of Russian verbs lyubit’ and obozhat’ in their mutual synonymic bond. Lyubit’ has three meanings and three parallel usages: (1) Ona lyubit’ drugovo ‘She loves someone else’; (2) Sestry Tsvetaevy lubili svoy dom v Taruse ‘Tsvetaeva’s sisters liked their house in Tarus’; and (3) On lyubil davat’ interv’yu ‘He liked to give interviews’. Although obozhat’ can also appear in analogical semantic and syntactic contexts, it cannot be split into separate meanings. The observation is corroborated by a number of properties of the two words: their semantic, morphological, derivational and syntactic features, including the ability to function as indicators of the rheme. The abilities are realized differently in each of the three meanings of lyubit’, which for obozhat’ is not the case. In particular, it is impossible to use the latter in negatives (*On ne obozhal slushat’ muzyku ‘He didn’t love/adore to listen to the music’) or interrogatives (*Vy evo obozhayete? ‘Do you love/adore him?’).
Elena Levkievskaja, Sovremennyj russkij istoričeskij mif i sposoby ego vosproizvedenija, Etnolingwityka t. 12, s. 97-120, Lublin 2000.
THE CONTEMPORARY RUSSIAN HISTORICAL MYTH AND ITS MANIFESTATIONS
The article discusses commonly entertained ideological models in contemporary Russia, which constitute the “naive” worldview reflecting Russian social self-awareness. Generally known historical myths not only explain the world, organize our understanding of it and help survive in critical situations, but above all build national identity, confirm one’s self-esteem and differentiate “us” from “them”. They frequently assume an aggressive character and reinforce planned terror, cf. the myths of class struggle or world revolution, or the image of a hostile kulak (a rich peasant) in the Stalinist period. Myths imposed from above and designed to serve the interests of the authorities can only spread on a socially significant scale
through social consent. For example, the image of Gagarin as a national hero was a success but the attempt to create a similar image of a first woman astronaut Valentina Tereshkova ended in total failure or even ridicule.
Historical myths are based on the idea of a “golden age”. Three generally approved myths exist in Russia now: Soviet, pro-Western and monarchic. The first two constitute a pair linked by a principle of a mirror image, based on the idea of progress and a system of binary oppositions. According to the Soviet myth, the “golden age” were the times of the Soviet Union, a superpower able to defend itself, insure law and order within its boundaries, provide social stability for its citizens and create a dynamically developing system opposed to the “rotten” West. The myth is still quite popular. Supporters of the pro-Western idea (commonly called zapadnichestvo) expect the “golden age” to come in the future, Russia being a mere province of the Western or American civilization. The historical progress would consist in approaching the Western ideal. The third ideological model makes references to the so called “Russian idea” (russkaya idea), whose beginnings date back to the 16th c. teaching of the monk Filofey on Moscow as the “Third Rome”, to the idea of the uniqueness of the Russian culture and history (Dostoyevsky), to the programme of gaining “self-awareness” (initiated by Lamansky in 1892), and directly to the ideas of “Young Russians” (mladorossy) of the 1920’s, for whom the “golden age” were the times before the revolution. The central event of the 20th c. Russian history is in this model the assassination of the tsar, who represented the unity of political and religious power. A recent manifestation of the myth is the book Rossiya pered vtorym prishestviyem, published in 1998. It presents various arguments, from biblical to contemporary, in offering a revived variety of the idea of Moscow as the Third Rome, with all significant elements of the myth: ethnocentricity, sacralization of the national history, dualism of good and evil (where Orthodox Russia is good and non-Orthodox West is evil), or religious justification of the monarchic idea. Important elements of the myth are the concept of guilt and penance, understood collectively rather than individually.
Although the monarchic myth aspires to being Orthodox, it is very far from the real spirit of the Orthodox Church and its principles. It presents the faith in the tsar and monarchy
instead of the faith in Christ, the idea of collective action in place of individual action and responsibility, it identifies the Orthodox Church with the monarchy and excludes from it those who do not share monarchic views.
Currently, the monarchic model is functioning mainly as an oral tradition, but more and more frequently it finds its way to various writings, by which it is apparently gains esteem. The tsar, presented as a martyr and redeemer of the sins committed by the Russian nation, is portrayed as a cult superhero.
Aleksandr T. Chrolenko, Fol’klornyj mir v alfavitnom porjadke, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 121-138, Lublin 2000.
THE WORLD OF FOLKLORE IN ALPHABETICAL ORDER
The recent decades have witnessed extraordinary proliferation of lexicographic work. Numerous publications have appeared both in Russia and elsewhere, some of them rather peculiar, such as dictionaries of prison slang or obscene expressions. Although so far there has been no dictionary of the language of folklore, three projects on the language of Russian folklore and one on Polish folklore are currently under way. Of these, two are ethnolinguistic and two linguistic-folkloristic in nature. The former category includes dictionaries compiled in Moscow under the supervision of Nikita and Svetlana Tolstoy and the one compiled in Lublin under the supervision of Jerzy Bartmiński. To the latter category belong those complied in Moscow under the supervision of Serafima Nikitina and in Kursk under the supervision of A. T. Khrolenko.
The latter of these is a typically linguistic enterprise, it only records data from texts of folklore. A dictionary entry, which contains all collocations of a particular lexeme, consists of the following parts: (1) identificational, (2) paragidmatic, (3) syntagmatic, (4) paradigmatic-syntagmatic, (5) word-formational, (6) functional, (7) informational. A few entries serve as exemplification: reka, zelenyy, promolvit’, vpolsvista.
An assumption is made that the same descriptive method will be utilized for the language of perennial plants, the first category to be characterized, and for that of lyric songs and other genres of folklore. With time, the dictionaries of the language of different folklore genres will be combined into one whole. Only autosemantic words will be taken into account.
Pronouns will be excluded for their lack of folkloristic specification and little value for arriving at a folkloristic worldview. The linguistic-folkloristic dictionary from Kursk will provide information not only about language but also about the spiritual culture of the Russians.
Tat’jana Ju. Vlaskina, Reproduktivnaja leksika i kul’turnyj kontekst, Etnolingwistyka t.12, s.139-154, Lublin 2000.
THE LEXIS OF REPRODUCTION AND ITS CULTURAL CONTEXT
In lexical systems of Cossack dialects of the Don river, the lexis of reproduction, i.e. of sexual maturity, pregnancy and delivery, exhibits considerable parallelism between the descriptions of the behaviour of people and livestock. The two major fields of the lexis are: terms referring to the ability to reproduce and those relating to the actual delivery and the puerperium. Specifically, the word zherebets is used in dialectal contexts both in the meaning ‘a healthy, mature stallion’ and ‘a healthy young man frequently engaging in sexual relationships with women’; the word molodukha means ‘a cow which has calved for the first time’ and ‘a young woman who has recently married’. Similar parallelism are observable in relation to sterility (yalovka means a cow or a woman). On top of this, zoogenic metaphors are only used as reference to extramarital sex, which indicates that different dialects conceptualize sexual life in marriage and outside it in different ways. Oppositions of the type “marriage : extramarital sex” and “a person : an animal” are realizations of the opposition “us : them”, where foreignness is associated with the animal world (mainly with the dog).
Irina A. Sedakova, O sladkom v jazyke i kul’ture Bolgar, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 155-166, Lublin 2000.
ON SWEET IN THE BULGARIAN LANGUAGE AND CULTURE
In traditional Bulgarian culture, sweet things are good. Sweet foods, both raw and processed, are peculiar cultural signs with archaic symbolic and mythological content. Hence their significant role in beliefs as well as family and social customs (cf. a strong link between honey and korovay, a kind of pie). Sweet food is a frequent attribute of ritualistic hosting. Sweet things serve as links with the world of ancestors, the term for sweet is used as a euphemism for demons (sladki medeni, blagi medeni, etc.). In healing magic, honey and sugar are used to diagnose and prevent illnesses, especially communicable diseases like chickenpox; sweet water is poured over impure places. In folk Bulgarian culture, sweet products of rich symbolic content exhibit specific geography: they are a distinctive feature of the Balkan culture in the south of the country. At the semiotic level, sweet in Bulgarian culture is not only present in oppositions of the type , “sweet : sour” or “sweet : salty”, but also in “pleasant : unpleasant” or even more generally “good : not good”, , “good : bad”.
Natal’ja Archipenko, Otbiranie moloka u korov (k issledovaniju odnogo mifologičeskogo motiva), Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 167-179, Lublin 2000.
TAKING AWAY THE MILK FROM COWS.
INQUIRY INTO A MYTHOLOGICAL MOTIF
If any mythological system may be described through its characters or its motifs, the present article attempts to combine both approaches. An analysis is carried out of the motif of “taking away the milk from cows”, known among the Cossacks of the Don river (in their beliefs and short tales called bylichki), as well as in the whole Slavonic region. Both similarities and differences are discerned, the former in the realm of the motif itself and its function, the latter in the realm of the participating characters. In the folklore of the Cossacks, the milk is taken away by a witch, a snake (a viper) and a catfish, in the beliefs of other Slavs by a witch and a snake. However, although in the Cossack tradition there are three figures, genetically there are two: a witch and a snake. The figure of a catfish might have originated through a split in the Slavonic complex image of a snake, which in fact combines the characteristics of a snake and a catfish (or simply a fish). More precisely, one of the functions attributed to a snake has been made autonomous and attributed to a catfish.
Genadz’ Cychun, Iz bloknota učastnika polesskich ékspedicij (1. Kumina Voda, 2. Čagoščy i Čugajka; 3. Kryčac’ jak Bougary), Etnolingwistyka t.12, s. 181-187, Lublin 2000.
FROM THE NOTES OF PARTICIPANT OF EXPEDITIONS TO POLESIE:
KUMINA VODÁ, CHÁKHOSHCHY I CHUKHÁYKA, KRYCHAT’ YAK BOUGARY
Nikita I. Tolstoy introduced to studies on Polesie “a South-Slavonic perspective.” Its value is corroborated in the present text with an analysis of a few archaic words and phrases present in Belorussian dialects of the region. The primary sense of expressions kumina vadá, krychat’ yak bougary and proper names Chákhoshchy, Chukháyka, recorded by the author in southern Belorussia, can be established by comparative analysis based on dialectological data. The phrase kumina vadá ‘whirlpool’, as well as the very term kumá ‘a cave where water whirls’, may be linked to the form kum as a taboo term for the devil. The proper names Chákhoshchy, Chukháyka in Turovshchyzna are Proto-Slavonic archaisms and can be explicated through juxtaposition with the Slovene and Croatian name Chagoshche, and the Slovak verb chukhat’ ‘to watch for somebody.’ The phrase krychat’ yak bougary ‘to talk, discuss something in a loud voice’ can be associated with the Croatian bügariti ‘to shout, shriek’, ‘to lament over the deceased’ and Dalmatian bügariti ‘to sing old folk songs with specific tunes (in a specific way)’. The hypothesis is rendered more probable in the light of Balkan influences in Belorussian dialects, such as brynza, komarnik, turlik.
Tat’jana I. Vendina, Semantiko-simvoličeskaja paradigma cveta k kontekste slovoobrazovanija, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 189-203, Lublin 2000.
SEMANTIC-SYMBOLIC PATTERN OF COLOUR IN THE WORD-FORMATIONAL CONTEXT
The article focuses on the role of colour in ethnocultural system. An attempt is made to find out which of the conceptual categories of colour are reflected in language and what is their symbolic value. In focus is Russian dialectal vocabulary, different from that used in the literary variety of the language in two respects: (1) lexically (cf. dialectal burnistyi ‘ryzhevatyi, bez chernoty i ogenoy krasoty’, zheltogorachiy ‘oranzhevyi’; and (2) semantically, cf. literary bagryanyi ‘vhodashchyi v blok krasnykh cvetov’ and dialectal bagryanyi ‘pestriy, polosatyi’. The article concetrates on belyi ‘white’, chernyi ‘black’, krasnyi ‘red’, zheltyi ‘yellow’, siniy ‘navy blue’, goluboy ‘blue’, and provides analysis at three levels (semantic registers): ontological, metaphorical and communicative.
White is utilized at all semantic registers and provides the richest semantic-symbolic pattern. Although all the colours are used to form zoonyms, certain tendencies can be observed. For instance, white is used mainly to refer to domesticated animals, e.g. belukha ‘a cow of white colour’. Black is mainly present in the names of wild birds, e.g. chernedyukha ‘a kind of duck’. Red, in turn, is most frequent in the names of fish, cf. krasnukha ‘salmon’, ‘roach’. Similar differences can also be observed at the metaphorical level, e.g. white is mainly associated with ‘good’, ‘free’, ‘pure’, green with ‘young’, red with ‘beautiful’, ‘happy’, or ‘good’.
Aleksandr Dobroer, Sinonimija cvetovych prilagatel’nych v proze Ivana Bunina i Aleksandra Kupina, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 205-220, Lublin 2000.
THE SYNONYMY OF COLOUR ADJECTIVES IN THE PROSE OF IVAN BUNIN AND ALEXANDER KUPRIN
In Russian and other European languages the inventory of colour terms is not particularly rich, therefore a writer sensitive to colour must often “invent” new colour terms. The aim of the article is to describe the synonymy of adjectives and functionally convergent constructions used to refer to colours in the prose of Ivan Bunin and Alexander Kuprin. The writings of both authors are represented in the analysis by portions of equal size. Altogether, colour terms are used 686 times: 401 times by Bunin and 285 by Kuprin. Both writers employ a rich palette of colours, although each of the two does it in a unique way. Bunin, for example, uses terms like mokro-zelenyi ‘wet-green’, belo-kudryavyi ‘white-hairy’ or ‘white-leafy’, as well as internally contradictory terms like belo-siniy ‘white-navy blue’ or krasno-chernyi ‘red-black’. Kuprin utilizes colour elements to achieve a specific atmosphere, much in the vein of French impressionists. Bunin, in turn, behaves more like a postimpressionist in using colour to evoke a specific worldview. The “map” at the end of the article shows the network of relationships between colour terms in the respective worldviews of both writers.
Krystyna Waszakowa, Konotacje semantyczne i kulturowe polskiej nazwy barwy zielonej i jej odpowiedników w języku ukraińskim, szwedzkim i wietnamskim, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 221- 232, Lublin 2000.
SEMANTIC AND CULTURAL CONNOTATIONS OF THE POLISH ZIELONY ‘GREEN’ AND ITS EQUIVALENTS IN UKRAINIAN, SWEDISH AND VIETNAMESE
The article discusses semantic and cultural connotations of the terms for the colour green in four languages: Polish, Ukrainian, Swedish and Vietnamese. The author focuses on phenomena common to at least two out of the four languages. The terms under investigation exhibit considerable valence which reflects various profiles of their prototypical meaning relating to plant life. The developments of semantic and cultural connotations of the Polish zielony, Ukrainian zelenyi, Swedish grön and Vietnamese xanh are rather diverse, which is taken as corroboration of the hypothesis according to which there exist certain cultural patterns basic for human perception and conceptualization.
Anna Koper, Empiryczne i mitologiczne podstawy przepowiedni meteorologicznych. Czas w przepowiedniach, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 233-249, Lublin 2000.
THE EMPIRICAL AND MYTHOLOGICAL BASIS FOR METEOROLOGICAL FORECASTS. THE FACTOR OF TIME
The article discusses traditional meteorological forecasts as a speech genre through an analysis of cognitive assumptions behind them. Inquiry is made into the priciples organizing the relationship between the premise and the conclusion; more specifically, between the time t of the premise and the time t’ of the conclusion (later than t). A hypothesis is put forward that mere observation of nature is not the only basis for formulating forecasts, a large portion of the latter being founded on mythological reasoning. Such are especially long-term forecasts concerning people’s lives or the quality of harvest for the whole year. The analysis of the principles of understanding time suggests that the driving forces behind them are metonymy and similarity. The former consists in associating two periods in a part-whole manner, e.g. Jak Marcin na białym koniu przyjedzie, ostrą zimę nam przywiedzie ‘If Martin (11 November) comes riding a white horse, he will bring a severe winter’. The latter is based on associating time periods, e.g. Jakie Zwiastowanie, takie Zmartwychwstanie ‘Like Annunciation, like Easter’.
Aleksandr W. Góra, O zasadach opisu zwierząt w słowiańskiej kulturze ludowej, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 251-263, Lublin 2000.
ON THE PRINCIPLES OF DESCRIBING ANIMALS IN SLAVONIC FOLK CULTURE
The author of the article, whose book Simvolika zhivotnykh v slavyanskoy narodnoy traditsii was published in Moscow in 1997, presents the principles describing cultural images of animals in Slavonic folk tradition. The priciples stem from a semiotic conception which assumes the existence of a common schema for the characterization of particular animals, or rather of their linguistic-cultural images. In the images, the author discerns sixteen categories of features of a mythological nature (i.e., among others, names, social status, appearance, attributes, origin, place and time of habitat, functions, the patient, etc.). Two of these, the origin of animals and their properties, abilities and inclinations, receive a more detailed treatment.
Małgorzata Brzozowska, Etymologia a konotacja wybranych nazw kamieni, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 265-278, Lublin 2000.
ETYMOLOGY AND CONNOTATION OF CERTAIN TERMS REFERRING TO STONES
A question is posed whether and to what extent the etymology of a word is reflected in its contemporary connotation. An analysis is presented of a few terms referring to stones (kamień ‘stone’, skała ‘rock’, głaz ‘boulder’). A juxtaposition of their etymology and connotation has led to the conclusions sketched below. (1) Connotation may constitute a continuation of features distinguished in etymological analysis (such is the case with the features of durability, hardness and the weight of a stone). (2) Certain features accepted by etymologists as primary are linguistically attested only in a rudimentary or partial way (e.g. the connection between a stone and life or eternity). (3) Extra-etymological documentation leads one to acknowledge the existence of new connotative features. (4) Particular semantic features may disappear in the meaning of one term but be preserved in that of another (e.g. the feature of sharpness, which disappears in the semantics of kamień ‘stone’ but dominates in the connotation of skała ‘rock’).
A hypothesis can be formulated that inquiries into the etymology of a word coupled with its contemporary connotations may serve as a verification of the former. The reverse, however, is not true: if a well-motivated feature established in etymological analysis lacks contemporary attestation, the fact does not disprove the etymology.
Stanisława Niebrzegowska, O kartografowaniu faktów etnolingwistycznych, Etnolingwistyka t. 12, s. 279-296, Lublin 2000.
ON THE CARTOGRAPHY OF ETHNOLINGUISTIC FACTS
Because cartographic methods are utilized to represent linguistic, cultural and textual data, a question is asked whether the folk genre of descriptions of dreams is geographically diversified, i.e. whether or not the explications of dreams have stable regional boundaries in Poland. Cartographic mapping is performed on explications (i.e. generalized semantic and structural components) concerning five dream images: fire, horses, lice, eggs and Virgin Mary. Tentative results, based on data from seventy one places, suggest that (1) explications of dreams do not exhibit clear geographical diversification, which means that they have achieved a high degree of stabilization over the whole ethnic territory; and (2) the geographical range of certain explications, e.g. fire being a prediction of sunny weather, can nevertheless be delimited.
Anna Pajdzińska, Po ojczyźnie-polszczyźnie z różdżką chodzę... Poezja a magia, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 15-26, Lublin 2001.
PO OJCZYŹNIE-POLSZCZYŹNIE Z RÓŻDŻKĄ CHODZĘ (‘I WALK THROUGH THE HOMELAND OF THE POLISH LANGUGE WITH A MAGIC WAND’).
ON POETRY AND MAGIC
An attempt is made to identify model situations of connecting poetry to magic. The most straightforward case is when a text features more or less conspicuous references to magical practice. In more complex cases, what makes it possible to juxtapose these very different spheres of human activity is a peculiar status of a word in both magic and poetry: it is believed to be causing events and effecting changes in the world. As a consequence, certain abilities and intentions are attributed to poets, as if to wizards or sorcerers, as opposed to ordinary people. The object of a people’s ‘magic activity’ may be a word, the world presented in a given poem, or the recipient. These elements are strictly connected with one another, therefore it is sometimes the case that the poet’s actions are directed to two or to all of them.
The article offers a more detailed discussion of the situations mentioned above, illustrated with examples from Polish poetry. Furthermore, attention is paid to the role of poetry in decamouflaging quasi-magical practices employed by politicians, propagandists, advertisers and others who attempt to impose a particular worldview on the recipients.
Paweł Nowak, Katarzyna Olejnik, Współcześni czarnoksiężnicy – magia i rytuał w takstach politycznych, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 27-48, Lublin 2001.
CONTEMPORARY SORCERERS. MAGIC AND THE RITUAL IN POLITICAL TEXTS
The article is an attempt to present the peculiarity of the magical and ritual functions of journalistic-political texts. The analysis is based on articles from the Polish press from the 1950’s and 1990’s. The choice stems from the authors’ conviction that the role of journalism in the respective periods was different, depending on the political system: a closed, communist society of the 1950’s and an open society of the 1990’s.
This intuition, however, has not been fully corroborated by the analysis of the linguistic material. For, as far as ‘mass communication’ is concerned, the analyzed texts feature a common factor of the same linguistic means of influencing the reader, often without the latter’s awareness.
Thus, the magical and ritual functions of political texts are fundamentally different from analogical manifestations of social life in primitive societies. In the latter, magic fulfills an integrating function and is used to establish and maintain contact with the sacred. The methods used by journalists are therefore unethical: communication is instrumental in nature and verges on manipulation.
Jolanta Ługowska, W świecie imion własnych. O funkcji imienia w Niekończącej się historii Michaela Endego, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 49-61, Lublin 2001.
IN THE WORLD OF PROPER NAMES.
ON THE FUNCTION OF NAMES IN MICHAEL ENDE’S THE NEVER-ENDING STORY
Not only scientists are interested in the meaning and function of proper names, their peculiar magic, links with culture, with its specific way of thinking and organizing the world. The problem also becomes an important component of works of literature, one of which, Michael Ende’s The Never-Ending Story, is the subject of the present article. Numerous motifs of this contemporary fairy tale are connected with naming and using names, with the creative power of a name. Problems crucial to the general idea of the work, its philosophical and ethical message, are the issues of real vs. false names, the punishment of depriving someone of their name and the role of naming acts. In the presented world, it is by receiving names that objects achieve genuiness and permanence. Assigning an appropriate name, too, means establishing a new relationship between the naming subject and the named object; it is tantamount to the enactment of the relationship of ‘possession’.
A peculiar necessity of naming, characteristic also of Ende himself, must be considered an integral component of his artistic method and associated with being a child, viewed as a peculiar way of understanding and organizing the world.
Anna Krawczyk-Tyrpa, Uniewinniająca zwyczajność. O „wiejskich” eufemizmach w dialektach polskich, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 63-75, Lublin 2001.
THE VINDICATING NORMALITY. ON “COUNTRY” EUPHEMISMS IN POLISH DIALECTS
In Polish dialects there exist a certain type of euphemisms which consists in making references to elements of everyday life in the country, of the home, the interior of the house, garden, fields and the woods in order to camouflage frightening, shameful or repulsive ideas.
In order to talk in a gentle manner about sexual life, pregnancy, delivery, excretion, vomiting, lice, death and the devil, references are made to farm buildings (stodoła się rozwaliła, lit. ‘the barn has collapsed’, meaning ‘the woman had a delivery’), to the backyard or a fence. The category of “country” euphemisms contains also the names of domesticated animals and livestock (a horse, ram, goat, dog and cat) or wild animals (a hare, mole, mice). Bird names are also frequent (a cock and a hen, an owl, stork, crow or gull). Another group is that of plant names (kwiat ‘a flower’ for menstruation, an onion, peas, thistle or nestle). Some euphemisms refer to the work of the farmer (orać na cudzym polu, lit’ ‘to plough someone else’s field’, meaning ‘to commit adultery’).
The choice of certain lexemes to function as euphemisms is dictated by the similarity of form of the euphemism and the word to be replaced: jezoro ‘lake’ – Jezus ‘Jesus’, grable ‘rake’ – diable ‘devil’, etc.
Renata Grzegorczykowa, O specyficznych funkcjach wypowiedzi religijnych, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 77-84, Lublin 2001.
FUNCTIONS SPECIFIC TO RELIGIOUS TEXTS
The article presents a functional typology of religious texts. Attention is paid to texts of the cult, rather than sermon-like, catechetic texts, the latter being, besides their uniqueness, similar to journalistic or didactic texts. Especially, the onus is put on the functions of the Bible and teological texts, liturgical and sacramental texts, prayers of praise and confession of faith, and other prayers. Finally, a discussion is offered of the differences between religious and magical acts, the most important of which include the very sphere of the activity, the attitude to the sphere of the sacred, and the use in magic (but not in religion) of evil forces.
Anna Engelking, Pozasakralne funkcje pacierza. Z obserwacji etnografa na pograniczu katolicko-prawosławnym na Grodzieńszczyźnie, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 85-100, Lublin 2001.
NON-SACRAL FUNCTIONS OF THE DAILY PRAYERS.
ETNOGRAPHIC OBSERVATIONS IN THE CATHOLIC-ORTHODOX BORDERLAND OF THE GRODNO REGION
Some of non-sacral functions of the daily prayers are their social functions. The knowledge of the prayers is a necessary condition for two types of initiation: one’s first confession and the church wedding ceremony. It is necessary to know the prayers to be admitted to a religious category of one’s familiars: ‘he who knows our prayers, belongs to us’. The principle of ‘sticking to one’s prayers’, i.e. to faith, is a condition for maintaing order in a multilingual and multireligious borderland world. This status quo is also accepted by the majority in mixed marriages.
A change in the linguistic form of the prayers means inclusion in a different group. By marrying and entering a new group of one’s familiars, one does not cease to follow the rule of ‘sticking to one’s prayers’; the prayers, however, are those of the ‘new familiars’.
Stanisława Niebrzegowska-Bartmińska, Idea działającego słowa w tekstach polskich zamówień, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 101-115, Lublin 2001.
THE IDEA OF THE ACTING WORD IN POLISH MAGIC SPELLS
Contemporary humans, conditioned by the omnipresence of writing and print, do not conceive of words in terms of events. Rather, words are seen as inanimate objects. It is different, though, in the traditional speech-based culture, in which a word, as an acting agent, can effect changes in the world. Such is the status of a word in magic spells. In texts of magic, a word is not a correlative of an idea but a mode of action, an event.
Swietłana M. Tołstaja, Magiczne funkcje negacji w tekstach sakralnych, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 117-125, Lublin 2001.
MAGICAL FUNCTIONS OF NEGATION IN SACRAL TEXTS
Negative constructions in texts of a siginificant illocutionary force (‘charm-aways’, spells, incantations, curses, apotropaic formuli, ritual dialogues, etc.) become a means of affecting real-world situations. Besides their basic grammatical function and the meaning ‘it is not the case that’, negative contructions in such contexts acquire stable cultural connotiations of mythological nature: a) they annihilate the evil forces – a disease, a bad spell, witchcraft – in a magical way; b) they designate ‘the other world’, whose features include non-being, non-appearance, non-action, non-place, non-time; c) they reveal dissociation on the part of the speaker from the authorship of a given act, and disclose the role of the real doer of the act; d) they are manifestations of black magic.
In sacral texts negation is a means of implementing magic and a variety of ‘lingusitic magic’. In the actional cultural code it is paralleled by ritual actions, symbolizing the annihilation or expulsion of evil forces. When it refers to ‘the other world’, it is paralleled by turning objects upside down.
Dejan Ajdačič, Dvuchsložnye magičeskie vyskazyvanija, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 127-137, Lublin 2001.
TWO-ELEMENT TEXTS OF MAGIC
Texts of magic are realized as formuli (fixed texts, images, schemata), i.e. key words which identify them, initiate and formulate the texts as such and specify their functions. The article forcuses on magic formuli based on parallelism, and especially on the two-element principle. These are texts which make use of the images of completed activities but which do not present processuality. Frequently they do not contain any expression or a form of address to beings, who/which are exprected to fulfil one’s expectations. Three types of such formuli are discussed: inclusion/exclusion, exchange/division and conditionality.
The formuli of inclusion/exclusion are realized by i... i... ‘both... and...’ (inclusion) and ani... ani... ‘neither ... nor...’ (exclusion), e.g. i dniem, i nocą (lit. ‘both during the day and at night’) ‘all the time’; ni w dzień, ni w nocy (lit. ‘neither during the day nor at night’), ‘never’.
The formuli of exchange/division are present in texts which refer to exchanging something with nature, with external forces or with other people. The exchange is expressed by the pairs of words moje – twoje ‘my/mine – your/yours’, mnie – tobie ‘(to) me – (to) you’ (e.g. heavy menstruation is exchanged for something else with a river, sleeplessness of a child with a mythological being, the first or last harvest during the year with an animated farmer – the field owner, etc.). Formuli based movement utilize spatial expressions (na lewo – na prawo ‘left - right’, w górę – w dół ‘up - down’) with both or one of the elements. By selective exclusion, one of the elements is chosen and the other is rejected (teraz – później ‘now - later’, e.g. while inviting dangerous forces to the Christmas Eve supper).
Conditional formuli are based on a reciprocal relationship between the real (or the unreal) and the desired. The formuli are of the following types (the second element corresponds to the first one): quantitative (ile…, tyle… ‘if that much (of something), then that much (of something else)’), causal-resultative (jeśli, to ‘if ... then...’), temporal (wtedy, kiedy ‘when..., then...’), indicative of the method (tak, jak ‘in the way such as...’), idicative of the quality (takie…, jakie… ‘like... like...’).
All two-element expressions are used to create the oppositon of completeness – incompleteness, realized in demands from the following spehres: farming (good harvest – poor harvest), material possessions (wealth – poverty), psychological life (satisfaction – dissatisfaction), social life (social bond, acceptance – hatred, loneliness).
Together with the belief in mythical and magical associations between phenomena, two-element texts of magic are based on the pairs of formuli and words which re-establish these associations in order to fulfil certain demands or regulate certain relationships in nature and the society.
Aleksej V. Judin, Magičeskie performativy v zagovorach i kalendarnych pesnjach Voctočnych Slavjan, Etnolingwistyka t.13, s. 139-148, Lublin 2001.
MAGIC PERFORMATIVES IN SPELLS AND SEASONAL SONGS OF EASTERN SLAVS
For a religious person, the verbs proszę ‘I’m asking you for’, błagam ‘I’m begging you’ are requests addressed to God or the saints, never a manifestation of the speaker’s will. The same forms, used with a firm belief in their effectiveness in magic spells, serve as performatives: from the point of view of the speaker, the result is a real change in the objective world. By saying obiecuję ‘I promise’ or proszę ‘I’m asking you for’, the speaker does not change the objects of the world but his or her relationships to other people. A performative verbs is not only a word but an action.
Magic spells, Christmas carols, spring “wishing” songs (pieśni wołoczebne) are the so called magic performative texts, a term justified by the function of a particular text as a whole. A magic spell need not contain the verbs zaklinam ‘I cast a spell’ or szepczę ‘I am whispering’; similarly, a carol need not contain the verbs pozdrawiam ‘I am greeting (someone)’ or winszuję ‘I wish someone something’, ‘I congratulate (someone)’. Yet, they are performative texts if they preserve their intention and function.
In the case of orthodox texts or apocryphal prayers used as magic spells, it is impossible to distinguish magic performative texts from religious ones. This is due to an unknown, hidden intention of the speaker: whether the text is a prayer, which may help but need not necessarily be heard, or whether the speaker is a sorcerer convinced that what is being done will be effective. In the former case, a magic spell, which is a text of folklore, proves to be a prayer, and the performatives which it contains are of religious type. In the latter case, a spell appears to be an example of vebal folk magic.
The identification of the magic or religious intention of the speaker provides the basis for the recognition of two distinct groups of performative verbs and of whole texts with performative meaning: magic performatives and religious performatives. Both groups stand in opposition to all other verbs and texts because from the point of view of someone convinced of the effectiveness of magic or someone religious, use of words/texts leads to direct changes in the objective world, which depends on the will of the addressee of the utterance, should such an addressee exist.
Ekaterina V. Vel’mozova, Zametka o performativach so značeniem načala dejstvija v češskich zagavorach, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 149-154, Lublin 2001.
SOME REMARKS ON ACTION-INITIATING PERFORMATIVES IN CZECH MAGIC SPELLS
In spells relating to diseases, Czech performative verbs such as počinati, začinati ‘to begin-IMPERF’, počiti, začiti ‘to begin-PERF`, designating the beginning of an activity, can be associated with performatives designating the process of speaking, casting a spell or healing: žehnati ‘to cast a spell’, vzývati ‘to call (somebody)’, zaháneti ‘to chase away’.
The first category of verbs participate in creating a parallelism in which the active agents are, on the one hand, the subject of the spell (the sorcerer), and on the other hand Jesus Christ. For, it is only the sorcerer, similarly to Christ, that can inititate meningful magic actions. The magic actions of the sorcerer acquire an open character on the time arrow: with each instance of its realization, a spell receives magic power thanks to is ability to return to the ‘mythical primaeval time’. In the process, human actions are likened to cosmogonic acts.
The parallelism of actions, concrete doers and external forces is raised onto the level of important archetypes of human activity and has the ability to reapear infinitely. Contrary to the profane linear historical time, a spell functions in cyclical, mythical time, which combines the ideas of the beginning and end. In the Czech tradition, performative verbs of the beginning of an action prove to be points of convergence of what is human and secular (the sorcerer) with magic and the sacred (the life and deeds of Jesus Christ).
Marija Konjuškevič, Prokljatija v rečevom povedenii Belorusov, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 155-168, Lublin 2001.
CURSES IN THE LINGUISTIC BEHAVIOUR OF BYELORUSSIANS
The article is an attempt to describe contemporary Byelorussian curses (кленичы, пракён, кляцба, пракляце). An analysis of rich material from peasant dialects, the colloquial variety of Byelorussian and literature has revealed the most significant characteristics of Byelorussian curses. The curses are 1. commonly used, 2. more frequent in the speech of men than women, 3. spoken with peculiar proctracted and monontonous intonation, 4. drastic in their content, 5. contradictory in nature to the traditional tolerance and amiability of Byelorussians, 6. stereotypical in their structure, 7. poetic, 8. correlated in their content with a specific situational stimulus.
An attempt is made to answer the following questions: Why are curses so popular in the speech of Byelorussians? Is it because of the specificity of the genre or of the ethnic group? What is the nature of the peculiarity of the curses? What are their functions in liguistic communication? Are these functions susceptible to historical change? Are curses creative or merely reproduced texts? To what extent are they stereotyped?
Having analyzed in detail the lingusitic material from the semiotic, historical-cultural, sociological and pragmatic perspective, the author concludes that the specific nature of Byelorussian curses stems from historical-sociological conditioning. For a long time, Byelorussians were deprived of self-confidence and did not constitute a full-fledged nation. They had to cope with stronger and culturally more attractive neighbours. In accordance with the principle of “pain for pain”, curses began to serve as a peculiar reaction and a form of defence of the helpless and humiliated Byelorussian society.
Aleksej V. Judin, Personificirovannye lichoradki v vostočnoslavjanskich narodnych predstavlenijach (na materiale zagavorov), Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 169-178, Lublin 2001.
PERSONIFICATIONS OF FEVER IN EAST-SLAVONIC MAGIC SPELLS
One of the characteristic features of East-Slavonic cultures are presonifications of diseases, referred to by proper names. An example of such anthropomorphism is an image of smallpox as an old woman with sparkling eyes and one firm, healthy tooth.
The article offers a characterization of folk representations of fever (the folk names being zimnica lit. ‘the cold disease’, trzęsawica lit. ‘the shaking disease’). The characterization is a complex of eight basic categorial features: appearance, attributes, the relationship of people to the disease and vice versa, the influence of the disease on a person, the casues and origin of the disease, its duration and location in the human organism. The richest category is that of the influence of fever on people: it can strangle, squash, bite, burn, break someone’s bones, pull or torment someone, etc.
Daiva Račiūnaitė-Vyčinienė, Magičeskaja muzyka sutartines kak simvol garmonii i porjadka, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 179-196, Lublin 2001.
SUTARTINES: MAGICAL MUSIC AS A SYMBOL OF HARMONY AND ORDER
A claim is made that polyphonic Lithuanian songs called sutartines are examples of archaic ritual music in which the sounds and movements of the performers are symbolic in nature and reflect the world’s harmony and cosmic order. The magical function of the music is based on the structure of the melody and text, as well as on the way in which a particular piece is performed. An important element of the magic of sutartines is the very timbre of the performer’s voice, emphasizing vowels and creating the ‘gaggling’ or ‘cackling’ effect. The timbre is a ‘sound mask’ put on with the intention of preforming a song. The music of sutartines flows in an endless symbolic circle. It lacks signals of the beginning, culmination and end. Rhythmic repetitions of formuli create a pulsating effect, thanks to which the performers and the listeners can be emmersed in hypnotic timelessness, as it is done in Tantric mantras. The choruses of Lithuanian sutartines resemble Hindu mantras also due to various plays on sounds, e.g. modifications of one word, such as laduto – ladoto – lodata, etc. The characteristic chant lado – also present in Slavonic ritual songs – accompanied by clapping, probably had a deeper mythological sense, similarly to certain apostrophes to deities in sacral texts of Old-Hindu Rig-Veda.
Singing sutartines can be likened to weaving with the use of verbal-musical formuli and appropriate movements, which is why a special notation for recording the singing has been introduced, based on little squares on graph paper, rather than on notes and the staff. Merging of voices and performing sutartines in a closed circle creates the effect of bell sounds, which enable one to experience harmony with the world. The term sutartines derives from the Lithuanian verb sutarti ‘be in harmony, tally’.
Svetlana Ryžakova, Obyčnye i strannye časti tela u Latyšej (k koncepcii čeloveka v tradicionnoj kul’ture), Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 197-214, Lublin 2001.
ORDINARY AND STRANGE BODY PARTS OF THE LATVIANS.
A CONTRIBUTION TO THE CONCEPTION OF MAN IN TRADITIONAL CULTURE
The assumption that the conception of the human body is culturally determined serves as the basis for considerations of the conception in Latvian folk awareness. In Latvian folk culture, giving birth to a child is treated as “collecting” the child’s parts by the parents. The human body is said to have the so called “endings” of particular importance as points of contact of a person with the outside world: the eyes, hands, fingers and fingernails. In the symbolic sense and in rituals they can represent the whole person.
In the traditional Latvian worldview, the human body is an unstable and largely illusory entity. Hence a song can be treated as a peculiar body part: a contact-type “ending”, inherited after one’s ancestors, an ever-present tool indispensable in normal full life.
Vasilij Balušok, „Volk” i „volkolak” v slavjanskoj tradicii v svjazi s archaičeskim ritualom, Etnolingwistyka t.13, s. 215-226, Lublin 2001.
THE CONCEPTS OF WOLF AND WEREWOLF IN ARCHAIC RITUALS OF THE SLAVONIC TRADITION
The article is an attempt to reveal the correlation of the concepts of wolf and werewolf and the ritual of initiation in Indo-European peoples. Rich folklore-oriented, linguistic and ethnographic documentation has revealed that the transformation of a person into a wolf or a dog took place in critical moments of one’s life, such as the transition from adolescence to adulthood. On becoming adults, young men had to prove their valour, courage and unyielding stance in the face of enemy. The features constituted the basis of the future existence of an individual and the whole community.
In various sources relating to Slavonic cultures, the motif of initiation, manifested by the transition of a person into a wolf, can be found in the tradition of the wedding reception, in war campaigns, in the practice of looting or in admission to particular professional circles.
Wanda Budziszewska, Z „diabelskiego” słownictwa, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 227-230, Lublin 2001.
The Polish words szeroka, szerocy ‘wide’ have been noted to mean, surprisingly, ‘the Virgin Mary’ and ‘the saints’. The oldest recorded evidence presumably comes from the year 1560. The speaker was the devil, who wanted to avoid mentioning the names proper. Having compared Latin, Polish and Slovak records, the author concludes that the expressions are indicative of linguistic taboo. Their origin, it is hypothesized, is the Latin expression extensa mulier, used in reference to the Virgin Mary in magic texts.
Ałła Kożinowa, Michaił Tarełko, Realizacja funkcji magicznej w tekście jednego chamaiła, Etnolingwistyka t. 13, s. 231-246, Lublin 2001.
THE MAGIC FUNCTION AS REALIZED IN A CHAMAIŁ
In Minsk, Byelorussia, the authors of the article have found a fragment of a Muslim pocket notebook called chamaił, dating back to the times of the 1st Polish Republic. It is a genuine piece of evidence for the existence of a cultural and linguistic borderland in that area. It documents interpenetration of the verbal, object and actional codes, combining magic Muslim and Slavonic practices. Linguistically, it evidences the mixing of Polish and Byelorussian elements (Slavonic elements being written in Arabic script). Quotations from the Koran are provided next to advice to use alcohol as medication, which is against the Muslim tradition. Numerous prescriptions to treat such illnesses as a rash, bleeding, tuberculosis, fever, jaundice or bone pains advise to use appropriate herbs, a practice known to the local Slavonic community. The chamaił also contains original pieces of advice, uknown in larger Slavonic circles, which suggests that the text is a compilation.
Wojciech Chlebda, Polak przed mentalną mapą świata, Etnolingwistyka t. 14, s. 9-26, Lublin 2002.
A POLE’S MENTAL MAP OF THE WORLD
The analysis of the Polish public discourse reveals that geographical proper names and their derivatives are used not only to identify places and buildings or structures, but also to label stereotyped images of Europe and Asia, the Mediterranean Sea and Mount Everest, Byzantium and Atlantis, Pcim and Mława, Woronicza Street in Warsaw and Place Pigalle. A network of these images constitutes a “mental map”, superimposed over and relatively independent of geographical and political maps. A mental map is selective, i.e. it disregards the majority of real places and structures, and marked in the national sense. To two basic imensions – longitude and latitude – it adds a third one: that of verticality, which is used to valuate the entities under consideration. Therefore, objects on mental maps, in contrast to traditional maps, are grouped according to the similarity or discrepancy of their features and values. Mental maps change in time, as does the ability to read them. In social discourse there exist a number of crisscrossing mental maps (national, based on social groups, on particular social environments, worldviews, typical of a given generation, etc.), which constitute an important though still poorly known component of the cultural code of a given linguistic community at a particular time. By omitting to define proper names, contemporary lexicography does not contribute to a greater understanding of mental maps. In the present article the author proposes to use the cognitive definition to describe the stereotypes which constitute the Polish mental map, which description is treated as an important factor of the social and national reflection of Poles on themselves.
Krystyna Pisarkowa, Tożsamość nosiciela stereotypów etnicznych, Etnolingwistyka t. 14, s. 27-45, Lublin 2002.
THE IDENTITY OF A CARRIER OF ETHNIC STEREOTYPES
A national stereotype, contrary to the stereotype of a foreigner, is positive, while a spreading multilingual and multicultural nature of contemporary societies modifies the conception of a nation, its progress or regress, the interference of the state and the nation’s very essence in the linguistic sense. The multilingualism of the carriers of ethnic stereotypes requires the knowledge of several cultures; e.g. in Poland these would be Polish and Jewish cultures. For Polish Jews, the Polish language was the language of school, profession and a fascinating culture. Rubinstein, for example, claims in his autobiography that he loves Poland, that lessons of Polish were his joy, that he has a positive stereotype of a Polish man and woman, of the Tatras and Tatra-dwellers, but also that he had close contact with Jewish culture. Celan, in turn, the most distinguished contemporary poet of the German language, is a typical representative of someone functioning on a borderland area, an expert on and translator of Romanian, German, Hebrew, Russian, English and French texts. Reich-Ranicki identifies himself with German culture, although as a Jew he experienced persecution, a ban on higher education, deportation and a stay in ghetto. All he had was the German language and the knowledge of German culture: it is this culture that he considers his own. However, he also understands and loves Chopin as a “musical poet”, representing Poland, its great lyricism, Romantic and later poetry. After the war, he assumes another name (a Slavonic one) and answers Grass’s question concerning his identity in this way: “A half-Pole, half-German and fully a Jew”. The homeland he misses is found in art. He is distinguished from others by the loneliness he draws from literature, which allows one to take a metalinguistic stance on the reality reflected in one of the natural languages in which one operates.
Elena L. Berezovič, Dmitrij P. Gulik, Homo ethnicus v zerkale jazyka: k metodike opisanija, Etnolingwistyka t. 14, s. 47-67, Lublin 2002.
HOMO ETHNICUS IN THE MIRROR OF LANGUAGE: TOWARDS A METHODOLOGY OF DESCRIPTION
The article is an attempt to reconstruct images of alien ethnic groups on the basis of cultural connotations of ethnonyms. The analysis leads to a reconstruction of an “onomasiological portrait”. It consists of naming models, in which the linguistic knowledge about a given real-world object is reflected in the “internal form” of lexical items (especially in the internal form of nickname-ethnonyms and their semantic derivatives). In order to reconstruct a relatively complete picture of a given phenomenon, it is important to take into account the lexis of different language varieties: dialects, jargons, the literary standard, as well as onomastic data. It is also important to consider the contrastive aspect of the phenomenon, to compare the portraits of the same ethnic group in different languages, which is why the present work offers an analysis of Russian and English data. Characterized are the types of information identifiable through an inquiry into naming models. Special attention is paid to the factor of linguistic technique, which may significantly alter the content of the object being reconstructed.
Ałła Kożinowa, Olga Potapowa, Stereotypy językowe w dowcipach rosyjskich, Etnolingwistyka t. 14, s. 69-91, Lublin 2002.
LINGUISTIC STEREOTYPES IN RUSSIAN JOKES
The article deals with Russian jokes. Jokes play a special role in people’s lives nowadays by, among others, contributing to the formulation of national stereotypes. In order to understand the mechanism of the influence of a joke on the mind of the receiver, it is necessary to analyze its textual components. A joke is construed as a type of text built on the basis of various mechanisms of the juxtaposition of scripts which constitute a type of equation. The equation contains constants, i.e. traits of human nature or patterns of behaviour in a given situation which lie at the root of a specific national character, and variables, i.e. the names of the representatives of given nationalities. A stereotype arises when a particular trait is regularly attributed to representatives of the same nationality.
Elena Levkievskaja, Stereotip Poljaka v russkoj literature XIX-XX vv, Etnolingwistyka t. 14, s. 93-104, Lublin 2002.
THE STEREOTYPE OF A POLE IN THE RUSSIAN LITERATURE OF THE 19th AND 20th CENTURIES
It is claimed that the relationship of Russia towards Poland may be described with Catullus’s words: “I hate and love”. The hatred derives from the political struggle between the two countries, the memories of which on the Russian side go back to the wars of the 16th and 17th centuries, when the image of a Pole-enemy, a Polish arrogant, boastful and double-faced “master” took shape. In the 18th and 19th centuries, Russian patriotic poetry extolled the praises of Russian victories over Polish forces, especially those in 1795 and 1831. The reproach to the Polish pride, rebelliousness, instability, and alienation from their kin (i.e. Slavs) was based on political and theological premises, the former because these characteristics stood in opposition to the ideas of the Russian panslavism, the latter because they did not match the ideal of a humble Christian. In the 20th century there comes a change of perspective and revaluation of traditional characteristics: “Polish pride” begins to be seen as a manifestation of dignity, inextricably linked with human nature (in the poems of Marina Tsvetayeva), whereas Polish rebelliousness and reluctance to submission as the ability to adamantly resist force (in the poems of David Samoylov). What changed were not the characteristics themselves but their valuation.
Jerzy Bartmiński, Irina Lappo, Urszula Majer-Baranowska, Stereotyp Rosjanina i jego profilowanie we współczesnej polszczyźnie, Etnolingwistyka t. 14, s. 105-151, Lublin 2002.
THE STEREOTYPE OF A RUSSIAN AND ITS PROFILES IN CONTEMPORARY POLISH
The article aims to reconstruct the Polish stereotype of a Russian by means of the cognitive definition, whose principal components are predications of the type “Russians drink”, “Russians are brutal”, “Russians are aggressive”, “Russians are musical”, etc. It also aims to capture the mechanisms guiding the functioning of the stereotype in public discourse. A set of about seventy fixed sentences-judgements of this type can be grouped into a few categories (syndromes): “the Russian soul”, “a brother Slav”, an aggressor and enemy, “a master and slave” (i.e. someone despotic and enslaved at the same time), “an Asian”, someone with a specific and rich cultural background, a marketplace trader. At the level of contemporary public discourse the categories give rise to profiles, i.e. functional stereotypical variants whose author is always a sociologically and culturally defined subject, e.g. a Pole – simple person, a Polish patriot, a member of the Polish intelligentsia with European horizons, a young pragmatist.
The base set of features attributed to Russians by Poles is established on the basis of three types of linguistic data: systemic (ethnonyms and their derivatives, phraseological units and collocations), experimental (questionnaires conducted according to various methods among Lublin students in the period 1990–2000) and textual.
Irina Lappo, Profilowanie stereotypu Rosjanina w polskim kręgu językowo-kulturowym, Etnolingwistyka t. 14, s. 153-174, Lublin 2002.
THE PROFILING OF THE STEREOTYPE OF A RUSSIAN IN POLISH CULTURE AND LANGUAGE
Contrary to popular belief, the stereotype of a Russian in Poland is not exclusively negative. The analysis presented in this article – also partially used in the article by Bartmiński, Lappo and Majer-Baranowska in the present volume – follows the Lublin conception of profiling and allows one to reconstruct various profiles of the image of a Russian present in Polish public discourse and ordinary thinking. The profiles arise out of base features established in the Polish tradition relative to the assumed perspectives and points of view.
The most frequent profile of a Russian is built on the basis of an image of someone with the “Russian soul”, characterized by the lack of restraint, excessive drinking, a pinch of unpredictable recklessness, openness, cordiality, hospitality, love of partying, perserverence, stubborness, as well as the syndrome of “Asianness”: the mentality of a slave, wildness, civilizational backwardness and hypocrisy. It is the model of a “brother-enemy”, a Slav-Asian, the most frequent one.
The most negative variant is built from the perspective of a Polish citizen and patriot subjected to national, ideological and political repression. This is the profile of a Russian “master”, representing a hostile Empire and participating in despotic and totalitarian mechanisms of wielding power.
Among the Polish intelligentsia, there exists the profile of a “Moscovite-friend” (following Mickiewicz). In this view the Russian good (e.g. culture) is kept distinct from the Russian evil (i.e. the political system), a Russian – especially a member of the Russian intelligentsia – being seen as someone close and spiritually rich.
The weakest one is a newly arising profile of a Russian-European, found among young educated Poles, who share the common canon of basic values (the knowledge of English, computer skills, the love of McDonald’s, globalization, etc.)
Aneta Wysocka, Językowy obraz Afrykanina, Etnolingwistyka t. 14, s. 175-196, Lublin 2002.
THE LINGUISTIC PICTURE OF AN AFRICAN
The article deals with the influence of the linguistic worldview on texts created by individual authors. An analysis is offered of the linguistic picture of Africans in the journalistic texts of Henryk Sienkiewicz and Ryszard Kapuściński. More specifically, the analysis is focused on explicitly formulated statements about Africans as well as those residing in the background of the semantics of words used to refer to Africans. The results are juxtaposed with the picture of Africans reflected in Polish lexis and phraseology as well as in formulaic texts (proverbs and jokes).
The linguistic picture of Africans in Polish is axiologically homogeneous. They are perceived as slaves or servants, people of low social status, of “exotic” appearance, poor in the literal and spiritual sense. The picture is a result of the general way of stereotype creation: by a clear demarcation of “them” and attributing to this group a stable inventory of features, mostly negative, one is able to depreciate “them” in order to value “us” more highly. A set of beliefs which constitutes a racial stereotype is acquired together with language; in order to go beyond the implications of one’s language, an additional cognitive effort is required.
The present analysis allows one to conclude that this is, in fact, possible. While the picture of Africans in Sienkiewicz’s Listy. . . is almost identical with their image encoded in Polish generally, in Kapuściński’s Heban their presentation is radically different. Kapuściński’s works show that a departure from a stereotype requires not only independent thinking, but also making a conscious and careful use of linguistic resources.
Agata Małyska, Rytuał a stereotyp. Podobieństwa oraz różnice genetyczne i funkcjonalne, Etnolingwistyka t. 14, s. 197-216, Lublin 2002.
RITUAL VS. STEREOTYPE: SIMILARITIES AS WELL AS GENETIC AND FUNCTIONAL DIFFERENCES
An attempt is made to compare the concepts of ritual and stereotype, which because of their interdisciplinary nature and partial semantic overlap are semantically vague and often identified with other related concepts. In order to define them more precisely, a juxtaposition has been made of features which make up the two concepts, relating to their origin, structural and functional characteristics (attributed to them on the extralinguistic and linguistic basis).
The Polish rytuał ‘ritual’ and stereotyp ‘stereotype’ have different origins. The former has been used since the 16th c., first to refer to a book describing church ceremonies called Agenda, then in the sense of “a pattern of behaviour according to an established external norm”. The term stereotyphas been used since the 18th c. to refer to a printing process performed with ready-made hard matrices. The transformations which have taken place within the two concepts have rendered them important for sciences which deal with cognition, language and social communication. The analysis has revealed that although there exist features shared by both concepts (the stabilization of form, conventionalization of content, repetitiveness, constancy), it is improper to identify one with the other. Rytuał is defined as a performative action, characterized by institutionalization, a connection with the pragmatic situation and a necessity of application caused by social pressure. Stereotyp, in turn, is understood as a mental category, as a picture in the mind. It is closely connected with a cognitive function and serves as a categorizing tool. It is possible to find a common research platform for both (for instance, the language of politics has been depicted both as a manifestation of language being stereotyped and ritualized) but one must bear in mind that the features they are characterized by are gradable (i.e. the social nature of a ritual is for a stereotype a secondary trait) and the choice of the term depends on the purpose of research.
Pierre Demarolle, Semantyka a społeczeństwo. Pojęcie selekcji i preorientacji w szkolnictwie francuskim w latach 1956-1968, Etnolingwistyka t. 15, s. 49-61, Lublin 2003.
SEMANTICS AND SOCIETY: THE NOTION OF SÉLECTION VIS-Á-VIS THE EVOLUTION OF THE FRENCH SCHOOLING SYSTEM (1956–1968)
The article discusses one stage in the development of the French noun sélection in relation to the changing social system of values, the manifestation of which can be seen in the evolution of the French educational system. A borrowing from English, made popular in the context of Darwin’s theory, the noun originally had positive connotations. Selection was seen as tantamount to biological and – as it originally referred to the educational system – social progress: it helped shape the future social elite by discriminating between the children pursuing and not pursuing their education in secondary schools.
The implementation of subsequent changes in the educational system was targeted at democratizing the school and raising the age of compulsory education. The policy of selection was gradually being replaced with that of preorientation, i.e. of varying pupils’ educational careers depending on their talents. The semantics of the word sélection underwent changes, one of which was a complete loss of positive connotations.
Elżbieta Skibińska, Pojęcie stereotypu w badaniach francuskich. Przegląd najnowszych tendencji, Etnolingwistyka t. 15, s.63-79, Lublin 2003.
THE NOTION OF STEREOTYPE IN FRENCH LINGUISTICS. A SURVEY OF RECENT CONCEPTIONS
The article attempts to show how the notion of stereotype is used in recent French publications, mostly linguistic but also from related fields (research on stereotypes is often interdisciplinary in nature).
For French authors, the main characteristics of stereotypes are: recurrence, reconstitution of stable features, social character, simplistic nature and schematicity. For analytical or descriptive purposes, the characteristics are used differently in different linguistic trends, which results in various interpretations of what stereotypes are and how they function. Some authors understand stereotypes in a narrow way and restrict their descriptions to the way the latter function in language (as components of the meaning of linguistic expressions or factors contributing to intratextual relationships); others adopt a broader perspective, closer to Lippmann’s (social) understanding of stereotypes as factors facilitating communication within a given social group (this approach is characteristic of the methodology of teaching French as a foreign language). The notion of stereotype does not have one clearly and precisely defined meaning; due to its vague boundaries it is used frequently and resorted to in the analyses of various semantic, grammatical and pragmatic phenomena.
Vladislava Ždanova, Éksperimental’nyj podchod v portretirovanii konceptov sfery svoj / čužoj, Etnolingwistyka t. 15, s.81-95, Lublin 2003.
THE EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH TO THE PORTRAYAL OF CONCEPTS IN THE “OWN (US)/FOREIGN (THEM)” DOMAIN
This paper discusses possible criteria for the choice and testing of experimental stimulus-words, pointing to a general algorithm for the construction of associative and cognitive tests. The results of such experiments serve as the basis for a description of the domain OWN (US)/FOREIGN (THEM). The paper is based on reactions to the Russian stimulus-words патриотизм ‘patriotism’ and родина ‘homeland’. In September 2001 associative and cognitive tests were carried out with appproximately 100 students of the philological faculty of the Moscow State University (MGU). In the association experiment the informants were asked to give their spontaneous reactions to 30 lexemes. In the second, cognitive experiment, they were asked to define the lexemes in their own words.
The analysis of the results of the experiments allows one to draw the following conclusions: both родина and патриотизм are closely connected with the Second World War, which results from the patriotically-oriented school education. On the level of consciousness, a positive or neutral conceptualization of патриотизм was predominant. One fifth of the answers in the cognitive test lacked a personal, subjective understanding of патриотизм. 31% of the reactions in the associative experiment and 24% of the answers in the cognitive experiment showed a sceptical or even openly negative relationship to патриотизм, many of the informants finding it an anachronism or something dependent on social stability. Similar results were obtained for the lexeme родина.
The similarities with regard to the thematic choices and quantitative relations of the reactions to both родина and патриотизм clearly point to a close connection between these words in the associative network in native speakers of Russian’s linguistic awareness of. It is also an indication of a close distance of the concepts in the hierarchy of values.
Elena Akimova, Aloizas Gudavičjus, Ešče raz o stereotipach v étnolingvistike, Etnolingwistyka t. 15, s. 97-110, Lublin 2003.
THE NOTION OF STEREOTYPE IN ETHNOLINGUISTICS
The article presents the results of a small-scale psycholinguistic experiment, carried out within the framework of Jerzy Bartmiński’s methodology. The aim of the experiment was to identify the stereotypes of a Russian, Polish and Lithuanian in the eyes of Lithuanians. A hundred and fifty informants participated in the experiment: a hundred students and fifty city residents, aged 35-65. The results differ from those of earlier experiments with Polish and German students. In this experiment, the highest distinctive power can be attributed to the features of moral and social behaviour. The stereotypes in question point to the reversal of the correlation between the material and spiritual aspects of life. The experiment has confirmed the relative nature of stereotypes: the average rating of all three stereotypes among the older respondents is higher than among students.
The authors briefly describe their own conception of a stereotype and its relation to word meaning.
Katia Michajłowa, Pewne cechy polskiego stereotypu Bułgara, Etnolingwistyka t. 15, s. 111-127, Lublin 2003.
SOME ASPECTS OF THE POLISH STEREOTYPE OF A BULGARIAN
The article is based on anthropological and linguistic data obtained through fieldwork with Bulgaria-based Poles. A group of Polish residents permanently living in Bulgaria was interviewed between 1996 and 2001. The Poles, usually married to Bulgarian women, tend to live in big cities.
Their stereotype of a Bulgarian is predominantly negative. A Bulgarian is usually viewed as possessing oriental features of character, which stems from the one-time Ottoman domination in the area. The content of the stereotype draws on everyday relations such as those between a man and a woman, husband and wife, a Bulgarian mother-in-law and Polish daughter-in-law, or between parents and children. It is also based on the attitude of Bulgarians to tradition, customs, folk culture, religion, etc.
Features which are seen as typical of Slavs, such as hospitality, warm-heartedness and frankness, receive positive evaluation. Kindness to and tolerance for foreigners are emphasized as the most positive features of Bulgarians.
A hypothesis is put forward that the predominantly negative stereotype of a Bulgarian entertained by Bulgaria-based Poles does not result from the negative evaluation of Bulgarians, but mainly from a highly positive auto-stereotype entertained by the Poles themselves.
Ewa Jakubiak, Stereotyp Żyda w dowcipach z przełomu XIX/XX wieku, Etnolingwistyka t. 15, s. 129-137, Lublin 2003.
THE STEREOTYPE OF A JEW IN THE JOKES FROM THE TURN OF THE 19th CENTURY
The following elements are emphasized in the stereotype of a Jew in the jokes from the turn of the 19th century, found in Silesian calendars: Jewish names (Jankiel, Icek, Moszek, Rotszyld, Meyer, Sara, Lejbuś), the place from which Jews come (a Jew is a foreigner), their appearance (they are dirty), religion (they are renegades, the unfaithful), occupations (traders, matchmakers, usurers, non-farmers), behaviour (seemingly good-natured, carefree, cowardly and lazy, ready to take humiliation, cunning, miserly), characteristic way of speaking (they violate the rules of the Polish language). Stereotypical features are usually hidden in the deep structure of the text and it is the reader who extracts them. Collocations with the word Żyd ‘Jew’ are rare. The insignificant number of jokes about Jews and the humorous overtones of the existing ones are taken as indications of a positive attitude of Poles towards Jews in that period.
Dejan Ajdačič, Etniczno-wyznaniowe stereotypy kobiet u Słowian bałkańskich, Etnolingwistyka 15, s. 139-145, Lublin 2003.
ETHNIC-RELIGIOUS STEREOTYPES OF WOMEN AMONG BALKAN SLAVS
Balkan societies, diversified in the political, ethnic and religious sense, are characterized by long-lasting tensions resulting from mutual influences of geographically close cultures. As manifested in epic songs, THE OTHERS’ women have always been a challenge to men, which is especially pronounced at the “meeting places” places of different religions. At these borderline terrains, kidnapping someone else’s woman was seen as a heroic deed, bringing fame to the kidnapper. The hatred towards representatives of other religions was manifested in kidnapping their most beautiful women, claiming them as one’s own possession and converting them to one’s own faith. THEIR women were kidnapped by force, tricks or through their own consent, thanks to which religious intolerance could be overcome. The strongest warriors desired to take possession of the most beautiful women of THE OTHERS.
Jörg Zinken, Polskie autostereotypy w debacie o transformacji ustrojowej albo: dlaczego komuniści są Krzyżakami?, Etnolingwistyka t. 15, s. 147-163, Lublin 2003.
POLISH AUTO-STEREOTYPES IN THE DEBATE ON THE POLISH POLITICAL TRANSFORMATION OR WHY ARE COMMUNISTS TEUTONIC KNIGHTS?
The article analyzes the metaphorical structure of the Polish discourse on the closing stage of the communist system in the country. 1,008 metaphors found in journalistic texts from the year 1999 have been analyzed. The texts deals with various significant events of 1989. It appears that the metaphorical structures of various types of discourse express and strengthen ideologically biased interpretations of history.
Two phenomena have been analyzed in particular detail: the behaviour of the authorities and of the opposition during the Round Table talks and questions of the continuity of history. Both phenomena, whose conceptualization plays an important role in the shaping of the auto-stereotype of a Pole in the Third Republic, are interpreted via various metaphors. The metaphorical understanding of the continuity of history can be analyzed within Lakoff and Johnson’s so called “conceptual theory of metaphor”. The behaviour of the communists and oppositionists, in turn, is interpreted via intertextual metaphors, based not on bodily experience but on the experience charactersitic of a given culture. It appears, therefore, that the shaping of different concepts in discourse activates different spheres of one’s experiential basis.
Iwona Bielińska-Gardziel, Techniki operowania stereotypem w reklamie, Etnolingwistyka t. 15, s. 165-186, Lublin 2003.
STEREOTYPES IN ADVERTIZING
Advertizing rests on the stereotypes present in the folk mode of thinking characteristic of a given community. However, the stereotypes are not revealed in advertisements, which constitute a tool used to manipulate the receiver, his thinking and valuation; they contribute to the shaping of the receiver’s reactions, attitudes, decisions and actions. Copywriters use stereotypes and adapt them to their purposes: desirable characteristics of stereotypes are brought to the fore, those which might evoke negative associations are downplayed. For instance, because of the cult of youth, advertisements transform the stereotype of the old age, remove the unpleasant associations it evokes and attribute to the elderly certain patterns of behaviour typical of young people. The way a stereotype is profiled in an advertisement depends on the characteristics of the receiver: his or her sex, age, needs, habits and likes. It can flatter the receiver and transform the hierarchy of values; for instance talkativeness, usually considered a vice of the fair sex, is in one advertisement presented in the positive light: the sender is lenient with the female nature and encourages women to “talk like you were getting paid for it!”.
Advertisements profile stereotypes in such a way as to achieve the desired aim: to make the receiver buy the advertized product.
Maria Zawiałowa, Cechy myślenia językowego Polaków na Litwie w warunkach trójjęzyczności, Etnolingwistyka t. 15, s. 187-194, Lublin 2003.
LINGUISTIC THINKING OF LITHUANIA-BASED POLES IN A TRILINGUISTIC CONTEXT
The hypotesis of the relationship between one’s worldview and language has been experimentally verified on the basis of data obtained from Lithuania-born trilingual Poles. The subjects were asked to provide spontaneous associations with items from the same semantic area (‘table’, ‘home’, ‘woman’, ‘bread’, ‘head’, etc.) presented to them in Polish, Lithuanian and Russian, in that order. It appears that one’s associations to a large extent depend on the language chosen: only 30% of the responses overlapped. The structure of a semantic field in the linguistic consciousness of trilingual speakers depends on the language used on a particular occasion. Having at their disposal three linguistics systems, each with a different semantic and structural organization, trilingual speakers choose the options offered by a given language. In a sense, the choice of language influences the way of thinking and the system of emerging associations.
Jolanta Szpyra-Kozłowska, Małgorzata Karwatowska, Klient nasz pan a wszyscy ludzie są braćmi – seksizm we współczesnej polszczyźnie, Etnolingwistyka t. 15, s. 195-218, Lublin 2003.
“THE CUSTOMER IS THE MASTER” AND “ALL PEOPLE ARE BROTHERS”: SEXISM IN CONTEMPORARY POLISH
The paper examines the most important aspects of linguistic sexism (androcentrism) in contemporary Polish, i.e. unequal treatment of the sexes encoded in language, with a definitely more negative, unfair representation of women. The authors present and discuss the major areas of Polish in which linguistic sexism is particularly striking: the formation of names and common nouns, the vocabulary, set phrases, grammar, semantics and proverbs. Special emphasis is placed on the analysis of semantic asymmetries present in the meaning of seemingly equivalent pairs of words, such as mąż ‘husband’ – żona ‘wife’, nieżonaty mężczyzna ‘unmarried man’ – niezamężna kobieta ‘unmarried woman’, wujek ‘uncle’ – ciocia ‘aunt’.
Jerzy Bartmiński, Etnolingwistyka słowiańska – próba bilansu, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 9-27, Lublin 2004.
SLAVONIC ETHNOLINGUISTICS: TOWARDS A SYNTHESIS
The article is an encyclopedic survey of general problems of Slavonic ethnolinguistics and ethnolinguistic research on Slavonic history. A synthesis is proposed of research on the language of folklore and the problems of ethnopoetics. Emphasized is the importance of ethnosemantics, especially research on stereotypes as elements of the cultural code and linguistic worldview. Finally, emphasis is placed on the importance of comparative intercultural research, especially on valuation terms.
Ronald W. Langacker, Semantyka językoznawcza, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 29-73, Lublin 2004.
A VIEW OF LINGUISTIC SEMANTICS
The article is an early text by Ronald Langacker, published with the author’s permission, presenting the programme of “subjectively”-oriented cognitive semantics. The programme was launched about twenty years ago and has been consistently developed by its author, his co-workers and followers ever since. It is parallel in seveal points to the programme designed by Polish ethnolinguists for research on stereotypes. The latter was adopted at approximately the same time and developed in the years 1988–2003 in the journal Etnolingwistyka.
Particularly close to the conception of Polish ethnolinguists are those theses of Langacker’s cognitive grammar which pertain to the conceptual and subject-oriented nature of meaning, those which question the method of isolating linguistic meanings from the knowledge of the world and above all those which view meaning as embedded in the whole network of “categorial relations”.
Regardless of obvious discrepancies between the two approaches (e.g. the role of the “cultural code” in shaping linguistic meanings or a different conception of profiling), this programmatic article contains important and still inspiring conceptions of linguistic imagery (or construal), its dimensions, such as the level of specificity (the detail, “granularity”, or resolution) of the image, its scope of predication, the role of compositional paths in interpreting meanings, the notion of “perspective” and the mental construction of spaces by the conceptualizing and speaking subject.
It is important to familiarize Polish readers, particularly from the circles of the seminar “Język a kultura” [Langauge and culture], with the original formulation of Langacker’s ideas and solutions to relevant problems, especially in the light of a growing interest in the category of point of view and the role of the subject in discourse. (Eds.)
Renata Grzegorczykowa, Idee kognitywizmu jako podstawa badań porównawczych w zakresie semantyki, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 75-84, Lublin 2004.
COGNITIVIST IDEAS AS THE BASIS OF COMPARATIVE SEMANTIC RESEARCH
New perspectives in comparative studies, especially in semantics, have arisen as a result of overcoming traditional structuralism, of viewing language in relation to culture and of the emergence of cognitive linguistics, which emphasizes the role of language in different conceptualizations of the world.
Discussed are the following aspects of the cognitivist paradigm, especially valuable in comparative studies: the problem of the reconstruction of meaning (i.e. the formulation of the open cognitive definition), the concepts used in descriptions of meaning (i.e. interpretive frame, linguistic worldview, connotation, profiling, stereotype and prototype). Two examples are analyzed: feminizm ‘feminism’ illustrates the problems of the cognitive definition, while tęsknota ‘longing’ is a manifestation of different conceptualizations of comparable fragments of reality.
Urszula Majer-Baranowska, Dwie koncepcje profilowania pojęć w lingwistyce, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 85-109, Lublin 2004.
TWO LINGUISTIC CONCEPTIONS OF PROFILING
The article offers a synthesis of the conceptions of profiling proposed by Ronald W. Langacker and Jerzy Bartmiński. In the former, profiling is understood as one of the dimensions of imagery, as various construals of a given situation. Profiling is tantamount to attributing greater salience to certain semantic structures within the cognitive base. The base of a predication is its matrix, i.e. a set of active domains. The predication’s profile, then, is equivalent to those elements of the base which receive greater salience. A full description of the semantic structure of a linguistic expression requires a full description of cognitive domains presupposed by that expression. All linguistic expressions, regardless of their complexity, can be semantically characterized in terms of profiling of base elements. Thus, profiling in this conception is the basis for underscoring and defining the semantic pole of grammatical categories (e.g. nouns profile things, verbs profile processes), grammatical morphemes, syntactic structures, single lexemes and multilexical expressions.
Jerzy Bartmiński, in turn, understands profiling as a process in which a variant of an idea of a given object is created. A given profile is derived from the base set of semantic features within the same meaning, the latter being viewed as a finite but open collection of features. A profile of a concept is a variant created by a certain dominant factor, the semantic determinant. Different profiles are not different meanings but different organizations of the semantic content within the same meaning. The process of profiling includes a preliminary categorization of the object, a selection of aspects corresponding to that categorization and a qualitative characterization of the object within those aspects (facets). The key role of the subject is emphasized, profiling being determined by the subject’s point of view, type of rationality, knowledge of the world, system of values, etc.
The article ends with a comparison of the two conceptions.
Elena L. Berezovič, Obraz prostranstva w zerkale jazykovoj tradicii: metodika opisanija i nekatoryje rezul’taty, Etnolingwistyka t. 16 s. 111-127, Lublin 2004.
THE IMAGE OF SPACE IN LANGUAGE: METHODOLOGY OF DESCRIPTION AND RESULTS OF RESEARCH
The article proposes a scheme of description and analysis of the lexis of space. The starting point is the assumption that ethnolinguistic research should be directed towards a description of a subject-related image of space, i.e. a subjective factor in the reception of space. As language facts are being analyzed, the linguist deals with units of the initial (surface) level: the level of the direct linguistic manifestation of spatial images, from which it is possible to pass on to the level of base elements shaping the model of space. This requires a generalization of the basic semantic characteristics of the units of the initial level. The necessary condition for analysis at this stage is the representativeness of the material collected for analysis. The level can be considered as extra-linguistic, but the transfer to it leads through an intermediate level, the most interesting one for anthropological linguistics, connecting linguistic and extra-linguistic factors and describing realization of the network of parameters.
The analysis is based on folk-dialectal lexis and onomastics of the Russian North as well as presenting the results of the analysis of the semantic feld of ‘space’ in Russian folk toponymy.
Vladislava Ždanova, Predstawlenija o rodine i čužbine v soznanii sovremennych Russkich, Etnolingwistyka t.16, s. 129-147, Lublin 2004.
THE CONCEPTUALIZATION OF RODINA ‘HOMELAND’ AND TSCHUZHBINA ‘FOREIGN LAND’ BY CONTEMPORARY RUSSIANS
The article presents the ideas cherished by Moscow-based Russians of two points in their mental worldview: ‘homeland’ and ‘foreign land’. The semantics of transfer from one’s
own space to foreign, alien space is analyzed on the basis of the concept of ‘emigration’. A cognitive-associative experiment was conducted among Moscow students in 2001. In the first part, respondents were asked to spontaneously react to prompt words representing their own or foreign space (dom ‘home’, rodina ‘homeland’, tschuzhbina ‘foreign land’, russkij ‘Russian’ etc.). In the second part they were asked to define these concepts. The answers were then divided into thematic categories according to the principle of distinguishing the semantic determinant. Whole semantic components and individual reactions were compared and juxtaposed with folk and literary data.
A conclusion is drawn that in the consciousness of present-day students ‘homeland’ consists of dom ‘home’, sem’a ‘family’, blizkye ‘the close ones’ and rodnoya ‘relatives’. These components of the sphere of sem’a ‘family’ are transferred, with the omission of indirect components of the schema of one’s own space, onto the realm of the country, delimited above all in a cultural-linguistic, rather than political manner. Tschuzhbina ‘foreign land’, perceived in an opposition to rodina ‘homeland’, is more often conceptualized as a distant portion of space, lacking componential structure. Introspection allows one to see the foreign land as a place which does not meet a whole range conditions necessary for a harmonious existence of humans.
Grzegorz Żuk, Polska i Unia Europejska w tekstach humorystycznych, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 149-172, Lublin 2004.
POLAND AND THE EUROPEAN UNION IN HUMOROUS TEXTS
The article aims to investigate the relationship between Poland and the EU in jokes as a homogeneous body of text, political jokes being firmly entrenched in the Polish tradition. The corpus for analysis consists of jokes about the EU found on the Internet. Before the nationwide referendum on Poland’s accession to the EU, jokes functioned as one of the means of shaping public opinion, mainly used by the opponents of the accession. An analysis of the jokes, based on Victor Ruskin’s script theory, showed divisions and conflicts of interests in Polish public life, perceived by the opponents of Poland’s integration with the EU as real threats: programmed atheism, moral relativism, bureaucracy, propaganda, economic decline and eventually loss of independence. Superior to all anti-union jokes is the opposition of scripts POLISH NORMS – EUROPEAN NORMS, the former being social time-honoured norms, traditional, certain and verified through the experience of many generations of Poles, whereas the latter – a bureaucratic artifact, something alien, not subjected so far to the test of time, something forcefully imposed on the Polish society.
Elena E. Lewkijewska, Semantyka okna w tradycyjnej kulturze Słowian Wschodnich, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 173-177, Lublin 2004.
THE SEMANTICS OF THE WINDOW IN THE TRADITIONAL CULTURE OF EASTERN SLAVS
The window in Slavonic folk tradition functions as a ritualistic entrance and exit, connecting this world and “the other” world. Its role as a mediator between the two worlds is revealed in funerals and legends concerned with death: it is a way in which the souls of the deceased and mythological figures enter and leave the house. In ceremonies focused on death it is a dwelling place of the spirits of the deceased, of figures from the afterworld and angels. Social and ceremonial “aliens” – beggars and Christmas-carol singers – also stand by the window. Ritualistic encounters through the window function in folk tradition as one of the channels of communication with the afterworld. To throw something out of the window means to dispose of a dangerous or “impure” object in a ritualistic manner. What was “alien” was also brought to the house through the window, so that it could become familiar. The window is also associated with the reproductive system (cf. the custom of opening the windows and other openings in the house to alleviate the pains of labour). Looking through the window is a form of contact with “another” world, a means of seeing the invisible, e.g. one’s own fate. In the mythopoetic tradition a house without windows is seen as a deviation from the norm, a dwelling place of someone alien, of a being from a different world.
Jadwiga Puzynina, Problemy wartościowania w języku i w tekście, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 179-189, Lublin 2004.
VALUATION IN LANGUAGE AND TEXT
The article deals with the problem of the linguistic and textual manifestations of valuation. A claim is made that it is always realized in utterances, i.e. texts. The subjects of textual valuations are the authors of the texts, whereas the subjects of conventionalized coded valuations are communities of different sizes. The object of valuation is the whole reality and possible worlds arising in people’s consciousness. For people valuate themselves, their own abilities, traits and actions. The basis for valuating judgments are sentences, treated as the principles of values, which include the general quantifier (of the type X is something valuable/bad).
In the communicative act, the speaker/hearer can combine norms from different systems of values, borrow principles from individual authorities or create one’s own. In texts, one finds the presence of: a) value judgments coming from the speaking subject (the author of the text), in poetry – of the lyrical ‘I’, in narrative prose – of the narrator; b) judgments from the protagonists and other literary frgures, c) judgments expressed in direct or indirect speech. Textual valuation appears in various speech acts and modalities. Valuation often takes place in hidden presuppositions. It can be achieved through various units of linguistic code: words (dobry ‘good’, zły ‘bad’, ładny ‘nice’, brzydki ‘ugly’, ojczyzna ‘homeland’), phraseological units (coś jest do kitu ‘sth is worth nothing’, coś jest wysokiej klasy ‘sth is of high class’), word-formational constructions (romansidło ‘mawkish love story’, artykulisko ‘a huge article’), inflectional forms (ministry ‘ministers’, profesory ‘professors’), syntactic constructions (dzięki komuś ‘thanks to sb’, kosztem kogoś/czegoś ‘at the expense of sb/sth’) and phonological features (e.g. intonation). Valuation occurs in texts with various functions; it constitutes an important aspect of group identity.
Aloizas Gudavičjus, Aksiologičeskaja cennost’ metafory, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 191-199, Lublin 2004.
AXIOLOGICAL VALUE OF METAPHOR
Metaphor is dealt with from the positions of cognitive linguistics. Key differences be-
tween the new and the traditional approach towards metaphor fall under three oppositions: predication versus nomination, conventionality versus individuality, thinking strategy versus comparison. The evaluation in metaphor is not its conditio sine qua non but its very frequent aspect which is closely related to the expressive function of the speech act. The appearance of the evaluation in metaphor is being determined by two factors: the direction of metaphor and the cultural tradition. The direction of metaphor is defined by the relation between the source domain and the target domain. In most cases takes the evaluation takes the anthropocentric direction, i.e. metaphor directed towards a man contains negative evaluation whilst the reverse direction (source domain – man) – positive evaluation. By its nature metaphor has a universal character; in different languages the types of metaphors coincide, however, and their concrete realisation often depends on culture. Thus, the evaluation of many metaphorical expressions can be diffcult to explain by the actual value of these objects, which constitute the source domain of metaphor.
Elena Rudenko, Metaforizacija informacionnoj dejatel’nosti w terminach raboty s prostranctwom, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 201-213, Lublin 2004.
SPATIAL METAPHORS IN DESCRIPTIONS OF HUMAN COGNITIVE ACTIVITY
The article deals with the portion of linguistic worlview concerning consciousness and cognitive activity (the processes of thinking and remembering). Consciousness in the linguistic worldview is presented as a “container” in which there is another “container”, i.e. memory. Although consciousness and memory are usually considered as the same, the article shows that speakers of Russian distinguish them in precisely that way: consciousness is the place where one manipulates certain mental units, whereas memory as a place where they can be stored. This structure of consiousness, reflected in the naive linguistic worldview generally corellates with the scientific knowledge about consiousness. The case of the conceptual sphere of cognitive states and processes is different: the linguistic worldview radically differs from modern scientific models. The modelling of human cognitive processes takes place according to the “computer model” and vice versa: we imagine and describe computer processes according to the patterns of human cognitive activities. Thus, we transfer all our linguistic ideas of human consciousness onto the domain of computers. The human cognitive system and the processing space of the computer are both presented in the Russian naive linguistic worldview as containers, connected to the outside world by means of the channels of the sense organs and speech in the former case and computer peripheral devices in the latter (the monitor, printer, scanner, etc). The “container” of the computer has the structure analogous to that of the human cognitive system, i.e. memory (vinchester) and the brain (the processor).
The author then passes on to the sphere of the Internet, which in contrast to the human cognitive system and the processing space of the PC, is understood in a more sophisticated manner. It is captured by means of the metaphor of a “country” (travelling through the Internet), an “ocean” (bad navigation on the site), i.e. as a wide space of a complex structure, with a great number of small objects. It can also be captured by means of the “road” metaphor.
Nijolė Laurinkienė, Tęcza. Nazwy i znaczenie w kontekście litewskiej narracji folklorystycznej, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 215-239, Lublin 2004.
THE RAINBOW: ITS NAMES AND MEANING IN THE CONTEXT OF LITHUANIAN FOLKLORE NARRATION
The names of the rainbow and their meanings, found in Lithuanian texts of folklore (especially in legends and beliefs), have made it possible to reconstruct Lithuanian folk images of the rainbow: its appearance (the shape of an arch, colourfulness, vividness), functions (sucking of water, a symbol of reconciliation between God and people), connections with God and mythical figures, such as Łauma (a creature associated with water, a goddess) and the Dragon. The figures, whose water-related nature was considered important, were often presented as representatives of the rainbow. The mythological figure of the rainbow was attributed with power over waters on earth and in heaven, with controlling their mutual connection. In Lithuanian folklore, the rainbow is an intermediary, a liaison between the natural forces of the earthly and heavenly waters. Construed as a cosmic band, its function is to connect, embrace, or girdle the world.
Nikolaj Antropov, Kodovaja srtuktura belorusskich obriadov i ritualov svjazannych s vyzyvaniem doždja, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 241-255, Lublin 2004.
THE CODE STRUCTURE OF BYELORUSSIAN IMAGES AND RITUALS CONNECTED WITH INVOKING THE RAIN
The article presents the possibility of arranging field materials for the Byelorussian Ethnoliguistic Atlas according to minimal units (conceptual categories), corresponding to “ethnolinguistic semes”. An analysis is offered of ceremonies and rituals to do with invoking the rain. The material comes from 400 sites and has been arranged, following N. I. Tolstoy’s proposal, according to the following codes: action-related (blessing the well, offering sacrifices, purifying and drawing water), object-related (salt, sand, bread spade, table cloth), subject-related (children, girls, widows), locative (the boundary of one’s own and of the other’s field, river, lake), related to plants (corn, millet, flax), temporal (the twenty-four-hour period, day, night), related to animals (mole, ram, owl, cock, snake, frog), and verbal (magic spells, verbal formulae, song lyrics, etc.).
Ol’ga V. Belova, Vladimir Ja. Petruchin, Genezis “čužich” v swete fol’klornoj ètiologii, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 257-268, Lublin 2004.
THE ORIGIN OF “THE OTHERS” IN THE LIGHT OF FOLK ETIOLOGY
In traditional folk cultures the attitude to peoples of another faith is shaped within the frames of ideas based on the universal opposition of “us–them/the others” and evoking the features of “pure–impure”, “sacred–sinful”, “sacral–secular” etc. An important role in confessional descriptions of “the others” is played in folk culture by apocryphal motifs connected with the vernacular literary tradition. Such legends reflected religious polemics and tensions in the relationships between various confessions.
One of such motifs is an account of the relatedness of people of other confessions (Jews, Muslims) with impure animals (the pig). The motif, in different versions, can be found in all Slavonic cultures. The following versions are nalayzed in the article: a transformation of a Jewish woman into a pig as a consequence of the Jews’ rejection of the teaching of Christ; the origin of Turks from the pig and the dog; the act of digging out from the ground, by a pig, of representatives of certain nationalities or confessions; the act of hiding a saint in the ground by a pig. These folk motifs are mixtures, full of inconsistencies, of ideas concerning various confessions. They can be easily classified as belonging to the archaic genre of the etiological legend. Such ideas probably have a soothing effect in conflicts arising in traditional communities.
A. M. Kaljuta, Refleksy narodnych predstawlenij o simbolike cveta w poèzii Arsenija Tarkovskogo, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 269-285, Lublin 2004.
MANIFESTATIONS OF THE FOLK COLOUR SYMBOLISM IN ARSENIY
A claim is made that the semantics of colour in Arseniy Tarkovsky’s volume of poetry
Vestnik derives from the system of folk ideas. White is a symbol of the afterworld, sadness and mourning (cf. white mourning, a tradition present in Slavonic and other cultures). Red and its shades (“raspberry”, pink, crimson, “strawberry”, “fiery”) often symbolize blood and death. Green is on the one hand a symbol of spring, of the immortality of wildlife, but is also connected with dying. Black is conceptualized as a bad symbol of mourning, a symbol of fate. It is amazing that these poetic, auctorial metaphors of multicoloured sorrows (with a predominance of the black–white scale) should coincide with the folk tradition of a symbolic interpretation of colours. All colours in Vestnik (white, black, red, blue, yellow, green, dark blue, purple) are, on top of other meanings, used as signs of evil and mourning, which allows one to identify the concept of a “colourful mourning” in Tarkovsky’s poetry.
Maria Majerczyk, Kobieta – ptak – dusza w archaicznym obrazie świata, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 287-303, Lublin 2004.
THE WOMAN, THE BIRD AND THE SOUL IN THE ARCHAIC WORLDVIEW
The idea that the soul assumes the figure of a bird does not fit into Ivanov and Toporov’s world model, based on the allegedly universal system of binary oppositions. According to the model, the bird is a vital demiurgic symbol. The present article analyzes examples of folk ideas and practices contrary to that model and confirming the existence of more complex relationships between the bird and death/the soul/the woman. It investigates the origin and the semantics of motifs, attempts to typologically juxtapose the individual elements, strives to reveal the primary invariant. The following phenomena are mentioned: the sign semantics of ornithomorphic breads called ˇzavoronki, a children’s game called Kruk ‘raven’ (also Wrona ‘crow’ or Kogut ‘cock’), the ritual known as pogrzeb kukułki ‘the cuckoo’s funeral’, ballads with the motif of the daugher-bird etc. The formal connection between the bird and the woman was present in paleolithic art. The semantics of paleolithic images was also preserved in Ukraine (cf. the tradition of burning a cock, cooking a hen for dinner for the newlyweds, hiding an egg in the bride’s bosom, or ornithological names for ladies’ hats).
A conclusion is drawn that the bird can constitute a component of different systems of
mythological images, which is why it may contain contradictory features. The author puts forward a hypothesis concerning the mechanism which shapes the relationship between the woman, the bird and the soul. The mechanism leads to, on the one hand, a syncretic image of the woman-bird (the bird being a demiurgic symbol and the woman a chtonic one), and on the other hand to the idea of the woman as standing in opposition to the man.
Stanka Bonowa, Bóg wysoko, car daleko. Kilka uwag o kulturowych podstawach funkcjonowania frazeologizmu w języku bułgarskim, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 305-313, Lublin 2004.
“GOD IS HIGH, THE TSAR IS FAR AWAY”. A FEW REMARKS ON THE CULTURAL BASIS OF PHRASEOLOGICAL UNITS IN BULGARIAN
The article deals with he semantics and the cultural background of the Bulgarian phraseological unit God is high, the tsar is far away. Special attention is paid to its second part because in Bulgarian culture, similarly to all Christian cultures, the identification of God with Goodness is rather obvious, but that of the tsar with goodness may seem unjustified. An analysis is carried out of six semantic models of the phraseological unit in four historical-cultural contexts: 1. the tsar is far away vs. the actual institution of the tsar; 2. the tsar is far away vs. the relationship between God and the tsar; 3. the tsar is far away vs. the image of the tsar in folk culture; 4. the tsar is far away vs. Bulgarian historical figures.
The article concludes with examples of contemporary political realization of the unit, connected with the return of tsar Symeon from abroad and his position as the prime minister in the Bulgarian government.
Aleksiej W. Judin, Rozumienie terminu obraz świata i model świata w semiotyce i lingwistyce rosyjskiej, Etnolingwistyka t. 16, s. 315-323, Lublin 2004.
UNDERSTANDING OF THE TERMS “WORLDVIEW” AND “WORLD MODEL” IN RUSSIAN SEMIOTICS AND LINGUISTICS
The article surveys various conceptions of the understanding of the terms “worldview”/“world model” and “linguistic worldview” in the Russian linguistics and philosophy of the last three decades. A discussion is offered of the definitions proposed by and points of view of the following authors: Vladimir N. Toporov, Tatiana V. Tsyvjan, Jurij D. Apresjan, Boris A. Serebrennikov, Serafim E. Nikitin and others. (General, conceptual, linguistic) worldview/world model is understood as a picture, interpretation, or reflection of the ideas about the world, as a complex of the knowledge about it and a system of symbolic concepts, by means of which we know and understand the world. It is a reflection of the process of coming to the knowledge of reality (manifested, among others, in the categories which people construct). It is a way in which the world is reflected. Finally, it is the totality of judgments about the world.
Датум последње измене: 2007-12-08 14:06:47