French Lexicology and Lexicography

FRIT-F677 — Spring 2021

Kevin Rottet
GISB 1112
Days and Times
TR 1:10P - 2:25P
Course Description

Joint-offered with LING-L 630

This course will examine the joint fields of lexicology (including lexical morphology, lexical semantics, and the structure of the lexicon), and lexicography (the codifying of lexical information in reference tools, from the marginalia of medieval manuscripts to the bilingual lexicons of Renaissance classicists and today’s electronic and on-line dictionaries). We will consider scholarly analyses of lexical meaning, including componential analysis, semantic primitives (is there a semantic core common to all human languages?), prototype theory (why are some birds better examples of birds than others?), as well as the nature of collocations (in English one takes a test, in French on passe un examen), of semantic relations (in particular, the complex analysis of polysemy), and of metonymy and metaphor (in English, time is money; in French, money is food). The answers to many of these theoretical and even philosophical questions have implications for the lexicographer; how does the abstract analysis of lexical meaning inform the task of defining words? How does the study of semantic change inform the practice of etymology? We will also ask what counts as lexicographic evidence and examine how it is assembled, from 19th century volunteer readers to today’s electronic concordances and corpora. Issues in the compilation and structure of bilingual dictionaries and learners’ dictionaries will also be of interest.​

Interested in this course?

The full details of this course are available on the Office of the Registrar website.

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