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Study of the content of the concept by comparing its different-modal representations in the American language picture of the world

I.V. Vashunina, M.V. Zimina
80,00 Р  


Vashunina Irina V.,

Doctor of Philology, Associated Professor, Professor,

Russian Foreign Trade Academy,

the German Language  Department of RUDN,

the Foreign Languages in Theory and Practice Department of Moscow State Linguistic University



Zimina Maria V.,

Senior Lecturer of the Theory and Practice of Foreign Languages and

Linguodidactics Department

Minin Nizhny Novgorod State Pedagogical University



The article presents the results of the study of the content of the concept “Freedom” in the American language picture of the world, during which a new technique was tested. At the heart of this technique, there is a comparison of verbal and visual associations given to the stimulus “Freedom”. The verbal and visual associations obtained during the experiment are divided into core and periphery, and the following thematic microfields are revealed: Freedom as a socio-political phenomenon (rights given by the Constitution and the Bill of rights, freedom from oppression and ways of gaining freedom), Symbols of freedom, Basic principles and values of freedom, Domestic freedom (no restrictions and obligations, freedom of movement). As a result of comparison of verbal and visual representations of the concept “Freedom” the core and periphery are allocated. Associations, presented in both modalities, are related to the core. 63% of associations are included in the core of the concept of “Freedom”, this fact indicates a sufficient degree of its formation in the mass consciousness of the American people. The periphery includes associations represented in one way. The verbal and visual associations are also divided into conceptual, figurative and value components. The main component of the concept “Freedom” is figurative (60%), which indicates a certain “fuzziness” of the conceptual representation of the concept. It is found that the abstract concept “Freedom” is subject to visual representation. Differences in verbal and visual representations of this concept are revealed: absence of visual associations with units having opposite components of meaning; the presence of a large number of images of nature; exceeding the value component in verbal representation compared to visual.

Keywords: concept, associative experiment, verbal and visual representation, concept structuring, components of the concept.



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