Metatextemes characterising information to be introduced in a text from an epistemological point of view
Modal metatextemes, analysed in this paper, express various degrees of the information sender’s conviction of the truth value of the pieces information she introduces. Being in possession of a certain amount of knowledge, the sender formulates epistemic judgements based on the mental operations previously applied and hence expresses her own opinion with the aim of having the addressee assume the same point of view. Thus, the sender as a describing subject becomes an interpreting subject, too. The syntactic constructions at hand involve the sender’s specific comments on the pieces of information being transmitted in the given moment, thereby constituting a metatext that evaluates the semantic content of the main text. These constructions are elements of a second level of text.
Keywords: epistemic modality, metatextual operators/metatextemes, epistemic functors, epistemic predicates, epistemic possibility, epistemic modalisation, truth value verification, truth value judgements, the conviction of information sender, implicit modality, main text, metatext
The function of discourse markers in argumentative essays
This paper discusses properties of the text type of argumentative essays written in partial fulfilment of secondary school leaving exams. Its particular aim is an investigation of the functions of discourse markers in those texts. The results reveal that in this text type, a monological, written, pre-planned, edited and coherent type of texts, discourse markers occur in large numbers and in a variety of functions (textual, attitudinal and interactional). The degrees of explicitness of discourse markers, as well as their scopes, vary in the text portions of introduction, discussion, and conclusion. With respect to perspective, their most important property is that they serve as points of departure for text creation.
Keywords: cognitive text typology, argumentative essay as a text type, discourse marker, textual function, attitudinal function, interactional function
Nyelv és iskola
Variation in perceptual processes at an early school age
In the study of first language acquisition, speech production processes usually enjoy more attention than operations of speech processing do. The study of speech perception and speech comprehension at various ages has only come to stand in the forefront of interest in the past few decades. First language acquisition takes place with individual differences even in cases of typical development; however, it is generally agreed that early childhood differences in language acquisition are largely diminished by the time children start their schooling. The aim of this paper is to study individual speech perception and comprehension performance of first and second graders attending the same school classes (with GMP diagnostics, involving 80 schoolchildren). The results suggest no significant change between first and second graders, except for a single speech perception subprocess. The two age groups do not exhibit significant differences with respect to speech comprehension, either, with the single exception of word activation. On the other hand, the analyses have shown very large individual differences whose extent significantly surpassed previous expectations. Individual differences within typical first language development in early childhood are levelled out to a much smaller extent than would be ideal for the acquisition or teaching of written language.
Keywords: schoolchildren’s speech perception, individual differences, text comprehension, lexical activation
A nyelvtudomány műhelyéből
Types of historical legends in the geographical names of district of Tapolca
Collecting and studying historic legends related to Hungarian geographical names began as early as the end of the 19th century and gained more impetus in the 1960s when several collections of geographical names were published in this country. The collections of geographical names of counties and districts can be used as sources in several disciplines, including e.g. ethnography. Based on Tapolcai járás földrajzi nevei [Geographical names of the district of Tapolca] written by the present author, this paper assembles the legends of the Tatar invasion, King Matthias and Turkish rule.
Keywords: historical legends, geographical names, Tatar invasion, King Matthias, Turkish rule
Figure vs. ground in language and in linguistic description
As shown by the literature on functional cognitive linguistics, the relationship between figure and ground and the operation of foregrounding deserve especially close attention, even more than other decisive factors of the study of texts. Indeed, these are indispensable points of analysis in a complex description or interpretation of texts. The present paper demonstrates the linguistic relevance of the figure/ground relationship and sketches some psychological and reception aesthetic precursors; then it discusses various aspects of functional cognitive linguistic description, with special emphasis on the issue of its aesthetic applications.
Keywords: functional cognitive linguistics, figure vs. ground, foregrounding, text, style
Pragmatic equivalence in the translation of speech acts
The translation of culture specific speech acts such as greetings, requests, offers, etc. poses a challenge for the translator, as she has to decide what translation strategy to apply, whether she should follow the source or the target language norm. The objective of the paper is to propose an adapted version of House’s (1997) translation quality assessment model by means of which the nature of pragmatic equivalence in the translation of speech acts can be explored. The adapted model is based on a database of 900 English speech acts and their Hungarian translations taken from American serials and film series. The database is restricted to conventionally indirect, directive and commissive speech acts; however, it is believed that the proposed model can be flexibly adapted and applied to explore pragmatic equivalence in the translation of other speech acts as well.
Keywords: pragmatics, speech acts, translation studies, pragmatic equivalence
A functional pragmatic approach to aphasia
This paper is an overview of the theory and methods of a functional pragmatic approach to aphasiology and aphasia therapy. Functional neurolinguistics is based on direct interpersonal interaction and the study of spontaneous speech, as well as on detecting the patient’s remaining linguistic and non-linguistic abilities and their use for the purposes of therapy. In an aphasic patient’s speech production and perception, the current context (in a broad sense) has an eminent role to play. The paper also discusses ways of processing implicit meanings that are of prime importance in everyday communication, as well as compensatory strategies occurring in aphasic patients’ speech production, with special regard to their use of nonverbal signals.
Keywords: functional aphasiology, pragmatic skills, implicit meaning, compensatory strategies
An automatic classification of word initial sequences in spontaneous speech
Fundamental frequency and intensity have a decisive role in the demarcation of words and syntactic units in continuous speech (Lehiste 1970; Wright & Taylor 1997; Szaszák 2009). We hypothesize that vowel quality may be applicable in the classification of stressed and unstressed syllables of words on the one hand, and in the identification of the onsets of words in spontaneous speech, on the other hand (Cruttenden 1997; Kohle 1983; Ladefoged & Maddieson 1990; Pennington 1996; Swerts et al. 2007).
This study presents a new technique for automatic syllable stress detection. We use various statistical algorithms (SVM: support vector machine; HMM: hidden Markov-model) and various features (f0, intensity, MFCC, PLP) to classify stressed and unstressed syllables.
The results show that stressed and unstressed syllables can be distinguished in 92% of all cases based on the combination of the features analyzed here.
Keywords: spontaneous speech, stressed vs. unstressed syllables, segmental and suprasegmental features, automatic classification
On popular plant names
This paper is about the popular taxonomy and terminology of plant names. In particular, it discusses reszfugburján ‘Scrophularia nodosa’, a popular plant name from Gyimes and Moldova. It is shown how a single term may refer to a number of different plants and how the meaning of this particular Romanian loanword underwent semantic extension in Hungarian. It is furthermore claimed that names of illnesses, as well as popular names of medical herbs, deserve special attention within the area of ethno-botanic etymology. The classificatory principles of ethno-botany are shown to differ radically from those of Linné’s binominal taxonomy and are given a detailed examination. A number of methodological issues concerning identification and reference are also raised. A total of 80 professional and/or alternative terms used for he nine different plants that are also referred to by the term at hand are listed in order to indicate the difficulties of the identification of a given plant in word history and word geography. Terminological abundance (of homonyms, synonyms, and geographical heteronyms) tends to encumber semantic disambiguation, making the task of consistently referring to any particular species by a single term rather difficult.
Keywords: ethno-botanic taxonomy, ethno-pharmaco-botany, popular veterinary therapeutics, identification of plants, popular taxonomy, milking sheep farming in Transylvania