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An Onomasiological Theory of English Word-Formation

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Pavol Štekauer presents an original approach to the intricate problems of English word-formation. The emphasis is on the process of coining new naming units (words). This is described by an onomasiological model, which takes as its point of departure the naming needs of a speech community, and proceeds through conceptual reflection of extra-linguistic reality and semantic analysis to the form of a new naming unit. As a result, it is the form which implements options given by semantics by means of the so-called Form-to-Meaning Assignment Principle.<br />Word-formation is conceived of as an independent component, interrelated with the lexical component by supplying it with new naming units, and by making use of the word-formation bases of naming units stored in the Lexicon. The relation to the Syntactic component is only mediated through the Lexical component.<br />In addition, the book presents a new approach to productivity. It is maintained that word-formation processes are as productive as syntactic processes. This radically new approach provides simple answers to a number of traditional problems of word-formation.

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