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Revitalizing Endangered Languages

Edited by Justyna Olko & Julia Sallabank

Revitalizing Endangered Languages "This guidebook provides ideas and strategies, as well as some background, to help with the effective revitalization of endangered languages. It covers a broad scope of themes including effective planning, benefits, wellbeing, economic aspects, attitudes and ideologies."

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Dissertation Information

Title: Kollokationen: Versuch einer semantisch-begrifflichen Annäherung und Klassifizierung anhand italienischer Beispiele/Collocations: A semantic-conceptual attempt at a definition and classification, illustrated with examples from Italian Add Dissertation
Author: Christine Konecny Update Dissertation
Email: click here to access email
Institution: Universität Innsbruck, Department for Romance Languages
Completed in: 2007
Linguistic Subfield(s): Semantics; Language Acquisition;
Subject Language(s): Italian
Director(s): Heidi Siller-Runggaldier
Maria Iliescu

Abstract: This thesis studies collocations in Italian, i.e. certain kinds of fixed word combinations which can be situated between free combinations such as 'mangiare una mela' ('eat an apple') and idiomatic expressions such as 'portare nottole ad Atene' ('bring owls to Athens', i.e. 'carry coals to Newcastle'). While native speakers see collocations as entirely 'normal' and can intuitively form them correctly, learners of a foreign language might find them very difficult. A learner of Italian, for instance, should know that in Italian, a nail is not hammered in but 'planted' ('piantare un chiodo'), that, if you miss a train, you have to use the verb 'lose' ('perdere il treno'), that a rickety chair 'limps' ('la sedia zoppica'), a loose tooth 'dances' ('il dente balla'), that a person related by marriage has been 'acquired' ('un parente acquisito') or that a blank tape or CD is called 'virgin' ('una cassetta / un CD vergine'). The researcher studies the reasons for the strong linking power between the elements of collocations. She shows that the meaning of the words themselves as well as certain processes of semantic transfer (e.g. metaphorical and metonymic transfers) play an important role and that collocations should not be considered static but dynamic constructs which are subject to a constant process of modification.