Volume 9, Issue 2
  • ISSN 1877-9751
  • E-ISSN: 1877-976X
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The present contribution argues that illocutionary interpretation is not only metonymic (Panther & Thornburg, 1998, 2003), but also a matter of active zone/profile discrepancy (Langacker, 1987, 1999). The theoretical framework is the Lexical Constructional Model propounded by Ruiz de Mendoza & Mairal (2008, 2011) and Mairal & Ruiz de Mendoza (2009). In this study I examine active zone/profile discrepancy in a number of expressions that are constructionally polysemous from an illocutionary perspective. Such is the case of the utterance Stay away from me if you don’t want to get in trouble, which profiles an instruction to avoid some negative consequences and can be understood either as a threat or a warning depending on the active zone. The results of the analysis provide evidence of the need to consider cognitive construal operations in the approach to illocution adopted by the Lexical Constructional Model.


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