Title: Systematic Lexicography
Author: Juri Derenick Apresjan
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Number Of Pages: 306
Publication Date: 2008-10-15
ISBN-13 / EAN: 9780199554256
This book unites lexicography with theoretical linguistics. The two fields tend to ignore each other: lexicographers produce dictionaries, linguists grammars. As a result grammars and dictionaries are often discordant and sometimes glaringly incompatible. In Systematic Lexicography Juri Apresjan shows the insights linguistics has to offer lexicography, and equally that the achievements and challenges of lexicography provide a rewarding field for linguistic inquiry.
The author presents the vocabulary of a language as a complicated system reflecting a specific view of the world. He does so within an integrated theory of language, in which grammatical and lexical meanings, and the conceptualizations underlying them, blend and interact. Each lexeme, he argues, is a point of intersection of various lexicographic types classes of lexemes with shared semantic, syntactic, pragmatic or mental properties, that are sensitive to the same rules, and which should thus be uniformly described in the dictionary. When any lexeme is viewed against the whole set of linguistic rules, new facets emerge, and these reveal, he shows, key characteristics of words that dictionaries do not currently record.
Professor Apresjan not only presents an original, unified theory of language, inspired by the Moscow school of semantics. He also works out its consequences and describes the problems he faced in applying it to the description of Russian. The reader will find that travelling with the author through Russian semantic space is both enlightening and entertaining. The books wealth of lexical facts, illuminated by systematic thought, give it unique character and importance: it will be of great interest to theoretical linguists and to all concerned with writing of dictionaries as well as to semanticists and students of Russian.
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