1887
image of Applied semantics and climate communication

Abstract

Abstract

This paper explores ways in which applied semantics (coming out of Natural Semantic Metalanguage approach) can inform effective communicative strategies for action on climate change. After framing discussion, it presents three case studies, which are intentionally disparate in nature: contrastive semantics of the expressions ‘climate crisis’, ‘climate emergency’, and ‘climate catastrophe’; a semantically-enhanced examination of how public inquiries into extreme weather events help shape climate discourse in Australia; the semantics of ‘the economy’ in everyday English and the implications for climate change discourse. We argue that climate action communication is clearer, more resonant, and more effective when it uses or builds on ordinary words and local meanings.

Available under the CC BY-NC 4.0 license.
Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1075/aral.22028.bro
2023-07-27
2024-06-15
Loading full text...

Full text loading...

/deliver/fulltext/10.1075/aral.22028.bro/aral.22028.bro.html?itemId=/content/journals/10.1075/aral.22028.bro&mimeType=html&fmt=ahah

References

  1. ABC
    ABC (2020) Australian Broadcasting Corporation website. www.abc.net.au
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Bromhead, H.
    (2020) The semantics of bushfire in Australian English. InH. Bromhead & Z. Ye (Eds.), Meaning, life and culture: In conversation with Anna Wierzbicka (pp.–). ANU Press. https://press-files.anu.edu.au/downloads/press/n7194/pdf/ch06.pdf
    [Google Scholar]
  3. (2021a) Proof of concept for accessible disaster messages provided to government agencies. Unpublished proof of concept.
    [Google Scholar]
  4. (2021b) Disaster linguistics, climate change semantics and public discourse studies: a semantically-enhanced discourse study of 2011 Queensland Floods. Language Sciences, , . 10.1016/j.langsci.2021.101381
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.langsci.2021.101381 [Google Scholar]
  5. (2022) Tensions in talking about disasters: Habitual versus climate-informed – The case of bushfire vocabulary in Australia. Australian Journal of Linguistics, (), –. 10.1080/07268602.2022.2148455
    https://doi.org/10.1080/07268602.2022.2148455 [Google Scholar]
  6. Bruine de Bruin, W., Rabinovich, L., Weber, K., Babboni, M., Dean, M., & Ignon, L.
    (2021) Public understanding of climate change terminology. Climatic Change, (), –. 10.1007/s10584‑021‑03183‑0
    https://doi.org/10.1007/s10584-021-03183-0 [Google Scholar]
  7. Bullock, D.
    (2014) Learn these words first. https://learnthesewordsfirst.com
    [Google Scholar]
  8. Carrington, D.
    (2019) Why the Guardian is changing the language it uses about the environment. The Guardian, 17May. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/may/17/why-the-guardian-is-changing-the-language-it-uses-about-the-environment
    [Google Scholar]
  9. Climate Council
    Climate Council (2020) Effective conversations: How to convince friends & family that Australia should just get on with climate action. https://www.climatecouncil.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/Conversations-Guide-Economics-Climate_V4-FA.pdf
  10. Cole, L., Eburn, M., Dovers, S., & Gough, M.
    (2018) Can major post-event inquiries and reviews contribute to lessons management?Australian Journal of Emergency Management, (), –.
    [Google Scholar]
  11. Diget, I. S.
    (2021) Minimal English for health: Reader accessibility in public health communication about COVID-19 in Australia (with contrastive reference to Denmark). InC. Goddard (Ed.), Minimal languages in action (pp.–). Palgrave. 10.1007/978‑3‑030‑64077‑4_11
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-64077-4_11 [Google Scholar]
  12. Diget, I. S., & Goddard, C.
    (2022) Conceptual semantics and public messaging: “Risk-benefit” discourse around COVID-19 vaccination. Scandinavian Studies in Language, (), –.
    [Google Scholar]
  13. Dörries, M.
    (2014) Anticipating the climate catastrophe. InN. Lebovic & A. Killen (Eds.), Catastrophes: A history and theory of an operative concept (pp.–). De Gruyter. 10.1515/9783110312584.181
    https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110312584.181 [Google Scholar]
  14. English Web 2015 (enTenTen15)
    English Web 2015 (enTenTen15). Linguistic corpus. Sketch Engine. 〈www.sketchengine.eu
    [Google Scholar]
  15. Fairclough, N.
    (1995) Critical Discourse Analysis: The critical study of language. Longman.
    [Google Scholar]
  16. Feldman, L., & Hart, P.
    (2021) Upping the ante? The effects of “emergency” and “crisis” framing in climate change news. Climatic Change, (), –. 10.1007/s10584‑021‑03219‑5
    https://doi.org/10.1007/s10584-021-03219-5 [Google Scholar]
  17. Fernández, S. S., & Goddard, C.
    (2019) Una aproximación al estilo comunicativo de cercanía interpersonal del español a partir de la teoría de la Metalengua Semántica Natural. [An approach to the Spanish communicative style of interpersonal closeness from the theory of Natural Semantic Metalanguage]. Pragmática Sociocultural / Sociocultural Pragmatics, (), –. 10.1515/soprag‑2019‑0022
    https://doi.org/10.1515/soprag-2019-0022 [Google Scholar]
  18. Fløttum, K.
    (Ed.) (2017) The role of language in the climate change debate. Routledge. 10.4324/9781315456935
    https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315456935 [Google Scholar]
  19. Forbes, A.
    (2020) Using Minimal English to model a parental understanding of autism. InL. Sadow, B. Peeters, & K. Mullan (Eds.), Studies in ethnopragmatics, cultural semantics, and intercultural communication: Minimal English (and beyond) (pp.–). Springer. 10.1007/978‑981‑32‑9979‑5_8
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-32-9979-5_8 [Google Scholar]
  20. Foxwell-Norton, K.
    (2017) Environmental communication and critical coastal policy: Communities, culture and nature. Routledge. 10.4324/9781315757056
    https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315757056 [Google Scholar]
  21. Goddard, C.
    (2018) Ten lectures on Natural Semantic Metalanguage: Exploring language, thought and culture using simple, translatable words. Brill. 10.1163/9789004357723
    https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004357723 [Google Scholar]
  22. (2021a) Natural semantic metalanguage. InX. Wen & J. R. Taylor (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of cognitive linguistics (pp.–). Routledge. 10.4324/9781351034708‑7
    https://doi.org/10.4324/9781351034708-7 [Google Scholar]
  23. (Ed.) (2021b) Minimal languages in action. Palgrave. 10.1007/978‑3‑030‑64077‑4
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-64077-4 [Google Scholar]
  24. (2021c) “Minimal language” and COVID-19: How to talk about complex ideas using simple words. 국어문학회요망 [Korean Language and Literature Society], , –.
    [Google Scholar]
  25. Goddard, C., & Sadow, L.
    (2021) “It’s the economy, stupid!”: The everyday semantics of a geopolitical key word. Journal of Postcolonial Linguistics, (), –.
    [Google Scholar]
  26. Goddard, C., & Wierzbicka, A.
    (2004) Cultural scripts: What are they and what are they good for?Intercultural Pragmatics(), –. 10.1515/iprg.2004.1.2.153
    https://doi.org/10.1515/iprg.2004.1.2.153 [Google Scholar]
  27. (2014) Words and meanings. Lexical semantics across domains, languages and cultures. Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  28. (2021) “We”: Conceptual semantics, linguistic typology and social cognition. Language Sciences, , . 10.1016/j.langsci.2020.101327
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.langsci.2020.101327 [Google Scholar]
  29. Goddard, C., Wierzbicka, A., & Farese, G-M.
    (2022) The conceptual semantics of ‘money words’. Russian Journal of Linguistics, (), –. journals.rudn.ru/linguistics/article/view/27193 [ 10.22363/268
    https://doi.org/10.22363/268 [Google Scholar]
  30. Habermas, J.
    (1962/1991) The structural transformation of the public sphere: An inquiry into a category of bourgeois society [Trans.Thomas Burger with Frederick Lawrence], MIT Press. (First published in German 1962)
    [Google Scholar]
  31. Hein, J.
    (2020) Europeanized places, Europeanized people: The discursive construction of Argentina. Journal of Postcolonial Linguistics, (), –. https://iacpl.net/jopol/issues/journal-of-postcolonial-linguistics-22020/europeanized-places-europeanized-people-the-discursive-construction-of-argentina
    [Google Scholar]
  32. Ions, R., & Wild, K.
    (Eds.) (2021, October5). The language of climate change and environmental sustainability: The OED October 2021 update. OED Blogs. https://public.oed.com/blog/the-oed-october-2021-update/
    [Google Scholar]
  33. Labov, W., & Waletzky, J.
    (1997) Narrative analysis: Oral versions of personal experience. Journal of Narrative & Life History, (), –. 10.1075/jnlh.7.02nar
    https://doi.org/10.1075/jnlh.7.02nar [Google Scholar]
  34. Levisen, C., & Waters, S.
    (Eds.) (2017) Cultural keywords in discourse. John Benjamins. 10.1075/pbns.277
    https://doi.org/10.1075/pbns.277 [Google Scholar]
  35. McCarthy, J.
    (2021) Queensland already counting the cost of climate change. In Queensland, 1November. Advance online publication. https://inqld.com.au/news/2021/11/01/queensland-already-counting-the-cost-of-climate-change/
    [Google Scholar]
  36. Martin, J. R., & White, P. R. R.
    (2005) The language of evaluation. Palgrave. 10.1057/9780230511910
    https://doi.org/10.1057/9780230511910 [Google Scholar]
  37. Murphy, J.
    (2019) The discursive construction of blame: The language of public inquiries. Palgrave. 10.1057/978‑1‑137‑50722‑8
    https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-50722-8 [Google Scholar]
  38. Oxford Languages
    Oxford Languages (2019) Word of the year 2019. https://languages.oup.com/word-of-the-year/2019
    [Google Scholar]
  39. Parliament of Victoria
    Parliament of Victoria (2010) “The Statements of lay witnesses” 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission. https://webarchive.nla.gov.au/awa/20100927012906/pandora.nla.gov.au/pan/96781/20100923-0223/vol4.royalcommission.vic.gov.au/index7ba7.htmlaccessed via archive.org Wayback Machine
    [Google Scholar]
  40. Peeters, B.
    (2017) Du bon usage des stéréotypes en cours de FLE: le cas de l’ethnolinguistique appliquée [Making good use of stereotypes in the French foreign language classroom: the case of applied ethnolinguistics]. Dire, , –. epublications.unilim.fr/revues/dire/816
    [Google Scholar]
  41. (2021) From cultural to pedagogical scripts: Speaking out in English, French, and Russian. InC. Goddard (Ed.), Minimal languages in action (pp.–). Palgrave. 10.1007/978‑3‑030‑64077‑4_7
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-64077-4_7 [Google Scholar]
  42. Penz, H.
    (2018) ‘Global warming’ or ‘climate change’?. InA. F. Fill & H. Penz (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of ecolinguistics (pp.–). Routledge.
    [Google Scholar]
  43. (2022) Communicating climate change: How (not) to touch a cord with people and promote action. Text & Talk, (), –. 10.1515/text‑2020‑0081
    https://doi.org/10.1515/text-2020-0081 [Google Scholar]
  44. Petersoo, P.
    (2007) What does ‘we’ mean? National deixis in the media. Journal of Language & Politics(), –. 10.1075/jlp.6.3.08pet
    https://doi.org/10.1075/jlp.6.3.08pet [Google Scholar]
  45. Propp, V.
    (1927/1968) Morphology of the folktale [Trans., L. Scott] (2nd ed.). University of Texas Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  46. Pyne, S.
    (2020) The still-burning bush. Scribe.
    [Google Scholar]
  47. Sadow, L.
    (2021a) The Australian dictionary of invisible culture for teachers. ausdict.translatableenglish.com
    [Google Scholar]
  48. (2021b) Standard translatable English: A minimal English for teaching and learning invisible culture in language classrooms. InC. Goddard (Ed.), Minimal languages in action (pp.–). Palgrave. 10.1007/978‑3‑030‑64077‑4_6
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-64077-4_6 [Google Scholar]
  49. Smith, V. L., & Wilson, B. J.
    (2019) Humanomics: Moral sentiments and the Wealth of Nations for the twenty-first century. Cambridge University Press. 10.1017/9781108185561
    https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108185561 [Google Scholar]
  50. Stibbe, A.
    (2010) Ecolinguistics and globalization. InN. Coupland (Ed.), The handbook of language and globalization (pp.–). John Wiley & Sons. 10.1002/9781444324068.ch18
    https://doi.org/10.1002/9781444324068.ch18 [Google Scholar]
  51. Thunberg, G.
    [GretaThunberg] (2019, May5). It’s 2019. Can we all now please stop saying “climate change” [Tweet]. Twitter. https://twitter.com/gretathunberg/status/1124723891123961856
    [Google Scholar]
  52. United Nations
    United Nations (2021) IPCC report: ‘Code red’ for human driven global heating, warns UN chief. United Nations News9August. https://news.un.org/en/story/2021/08/1097362
    [Google Scholar]
  53. Wierzbicka, A.
    (1996) Semantics: Primes and universals. Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  54. (2002) Russian cultural scripts: The theory of cultural scripts and its applications. Ethos, (), –. 10.1525/eth.2002.30.4.401
    https://doi.org/10.1525/eth.2002.30.4.401 [Google Scholar]
  55. (2018a) Minimal English as a new and transformative tool for effective health care communication in English-speaking countries. Paper presented at theInternational Symposium on Health Care Communication, 13 February, Canberra, Australia.
    [Google Scholar]
  56. (2018b) Charter of Global Ethic in Minimal English. InC. Goddard (Ed.), Minimal English for a global world (pp.–). Palgrave. 10.1007/978‑3‑319‑62512‑6_6
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-62512-6_6 [Google Scholar]
  57. Wong, J. O.
    (2014) The culture of Singapore English. Cambridge University Press. 10.1017/CBO9781139519519
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139519519 [Google Scholar]
  58. Ye, Z.
    (Ed.) (2017) The semantics of nouns. Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
http://instance.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journals/10.1075/aral.22028.bro
Loading
/content/journals/10.1075/aral.22028.bro
Loading

Data & Media loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error