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Contemporary linguistics, Vol.63 No.1 February 2007. -

The goal of the present paper is to show how functional and cognitive linguistic approaches

can complement each other in providing external motivation for linguistic facts. Specifically,

I claim that cognitive linguistics, if it does not want to doom itself to the status of a partial

model, should in this search for motivation take clue from functional linguistics and go beyond

its traditional pet topics, human embodiment and socio–cultural environment, and also

consider the role of the existing linguistic system. I examine the interplay of metonymic

processes and topicalization as a case in point. Much recent research indicates that referential

metonymies are relatively unconstrained. However, a corpus–based study on the exploitation

of metonymically–used names of capitals in the language of media shows that this

type of metonymy is ubiquitous in English and German, but not in Hungarian and Croatian.

A detailed analysis reveals that the contrasts can in part be attributed to the fact that

English and German metonymically–used locative NPs that function as subjects often find

their counterparts in Croatian and Hungarian in locative adverbials realized as prepositional

phrases and noun phrases with locative adpositions, respectively. It is claimed that

these locatives, which are also shown to be full–blown referential metonymies, are optimal

structural solutions in such pro–drop languages with a rich system of impersonal constructions

as far as the complex task of maintaining nominal metonymic topic–continuity while

switching between multiple metonymic targets.

metonymy; metaphor; topicalisation; locative adverbial; functionalism; cognitive linguistics

Autor: Mario Brdar -



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