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Rhyme over Reason
Phonological Motivation in English

$110.00 (C)

  • Date Published: March 2019
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108491877

$ 110.00 (C)
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About the Authors
  • We are fascinated by what words sound like. This fascination also drives us to search for meaning in sound - thereby contradicting the principle of the arbitrariness of the linguistic sign. Phonesthemes, onomatopoeia or rhyming compounds all share the property of carrying meaning by virtue of what they sound like, simply because language users establish an association between form and meaning. By drawing on a wide array of examples, ranging from conventionalized words and expressions to brand names and slogans, this book offers a comprehensive account of the role that sound symbolism and rhyme/alliteration plays in English, and by doing so, advocates a more relaxed view of the category 'morpheme' that is able to incorporate less regular word-formation processes.

    • Presents an up-to-date and comprehensive account of word-formation patterns generally neglected or marginalized in morphological literature
    • Incorporates a wide array of examples, ranging from conventionalized words and expressions to brand names and advertisements
    • Places often neglected word-formations into the bigger morphological picture
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Rejecting the long dominant Saussurean view that language consists very largely of arbitrary sound-meaning associations and is primarily designed for the communication of referential meaning, Benczes takes us on a richly illustrated journey into a world of interrelated English word forms and of meanings affected by sounds and sound patterns. These lexical interactions are the expressive source of everyday language that serves to entertain, arouse, soothe and instruct as much as to inform. This is a book to tickle the reader’s fancy, tempting us to try our own hand at discovering such phenomena as onomatopoeia and phonesthemes, rhyming compounds and irreversible binomials. These unconscious influences between form and meaning and form and form are all ways in which our language is continually shaped by what we already know - information essential for anyone concerned with first or second language learning or simply with delving more deeply into the nature of language.' Marilyn Vihman, University of York

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    Product details

    • Date Published: March 2019
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108491877
    • length: 276 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 157 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.53kg
    • contains: 15 b/w illus. 7 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. Phonological motivation in language evolution and development
    3. Phonetic symbolism
    4. Onomatopoeia
    5. Rhyme and alliteration in blends and compounds
    6. Words, words, words: rhyme and repetition in multi-word expressions
    7. Conclusions: the piggy in the middle.

  • Author

    Réka Benczes, Corvinus University of Budapest

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