Studia Anglica Posnaniensia, 2008 vol. 44


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    Usable vs. abusable past. A reflection apropos of two (publication-politicization) dates in the history of U.S. literature
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Semrau, Janusz
    Using as examples two radically different classic texts, Washington Irving’s “Rip Van Winkle” and Stephen Crane’s The red badge of courage, the article reflects on the scope (limits) of politicization of literary discourse in the guise of direct contextualization and radical recontextualization. In the analytical part, it is argued that both works belong properly to the realm of existential facticity (Faktizität) rather than historiographic factuality (Tatsächlichkeit).
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    “Cold pastoral”: Irony and the eclogue in the poetry of the Southern Fugitives
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Kuhn, Joseph
    This article attempts to analyze a shift in the ancient genre of pastoral in the poetry of the Southern modernists, Allen Tate and John Crowe Ransom, a shift that seeks to account for the historical penetration of nature and that is often aestheticized as the ironical counter-text of the “cold” pastoral. Drawing upon the models of pastoral found in Lewis P. Simpson and William Empson, the article argues that the essential trick of the old pastoral – the implication, as Empson calls it, of a beautiful relation between rich and poor – does not work within nineteenth-century Southern literature because the black resists being turned into a gardener in the garden. The article then examines Tate’s “The swimmers”, a poem that narrates Tate’s discovery as a young child of the aftermath of a lynching, as an expression of this unworkability in an idiom of what Tate called “pastoral terror”.
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    Secret passage through Poe: The transatlantic affinities of H. P. Lovecraft and Stefan Grabiński
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Wilczyński, Marek
    The paper focuses on intertextual relations between selected horror stories by H. P. Lovecraft and Polish writer Stefan Grabiński. Using a triadic concept of intertextuality derived by Michael Riffaterre from Peircean semiotics, this is to demonstrate that the interpretant connecting Lovecraft and Grabiński is “The tell-tale heart” by Edgar Allan Poe.
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    Spiritualism in Neo-victorian fiction
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Kucała, Bożena
    The paper explores the theme of spiritualism in two neo-Victorian texts: In the red kitchen by Michèle Roberts and “The conjugial angel” by A. S. Byatt. In recreating the Victorian setting, both writers self-consciously draw on the late nineteenth-century belief in the possibility of establishing communication between the living and the dead by means of spiritualist practice. In Roberts’s novel, the presentation of spiritualism is combined with issues of gender and includes a modern perspective. While Roberts models her heroine on the historical medium Florence Cook, some of Byatt’s characters are based on literary figures, which adds a metafictional dimension to the metaphysical one.
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    Peter Ackroyd’s London as the backdrop to esoteric corners of the past and present
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Bartnik, Ryszard
    This article concerns Peter Ackroyd’s depiction of London as an arcane labyrinth within which demarcation of the borderline between what is rationally, historically acknowledgeable and what is not is not only highly problematic but in fact undesirable. London, with its echoes of the past, with its people and mysteries, is envisaged as metapolis which exposes, through both its architecture and textual topography, hidden tropes leading to knowledge which spills beyond the knowable. Listening intently to the voices of various rationalists and scientists, as well as occultists and visionaries, the author removes layer after layer of the city’s substance in order to define its spirit and “consolidate its origins” (Ackroyd 2000a: 229). The paradox is that Ackroyd, though a literary historian, defies the use of mechanical rationality placing the occluded knowledge in the foreground so as to allow that cultural and intellectual tradition which sank into oblivion to resurface. It is the past, often complex and mysterious, which foreshadows the present, he seems to be saying, hence his acknowledgement of London’s ignored and forgotten forefathers who, in the eyes of the author, must be rescued from oblivion otherwise the vision of London and Londoners is to remain incomplete.
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    The stain and the sign. Poetics in Philip Roth’s "The Human Stain"
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Veisland, Jørgen
    The paper shows how Philip Roth’s text discards and negates language, fiction and the temporality of narrative, replacing them with an experimental poetics that inscribes form into the body itself, endowing it with sensuality and musicality and manifesting itself as a new spatio-temporal form. Drawing on Heraclitus, Kenneth Burke, Friedrich Nietzsche and the poet S. Ulrik Thomsen, the paper further demonstrates how woman is in the place of the truth, and how “truth” in a sense is “no knowledge”. The dialogue between the feminine and the masculine, and the passion between a woman and a man expands subjectivity into an Other, a Third Form tending towards formlessness and eliminating the dualism of thinking and sensing.
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    “Stille as ston”: Oriental deformity in "The King of Tars"
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Czarnowus, Anna
    The article discusses the monstrous birth in the context of the father’s conversion in the thirteenth- century King of Tars. Miscegenation has to be diagnosed as the source of the child’s shapelessness, while the topic of false accusations of monstrosity in what Margaret Schlauch termed the “accused queens” narratives, i.e. the Constance-Group, cannot be disregarded, either. In the Middle English romance bestial, and specifically mostly canine metaphors dominate in the portrayal of the sultan; yet, they turn out to be inadequate once he is baptized and undergoes magic beautification, similarly to his offspring, now endowed with a form. The work’s didactic design consists in preaching the necessity of conversion to Christianity, while the threat posed by Islam materializes in the monstrous offspring of oriental origin.
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    A (crooked) mirror for knights – the case of Dinadan
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Witalisz, Władysław
    The picture of chivalry in medieval romance was primarily an idealised vision of knightly custom. The world of King Arthur and Camelot codified moral and courtly standards which were presented in literature as patterns for emulation. The writings of Sir Thomas Malory, the last medieval bearerup of Camelot, was understood and received by medieval readers as a traditional praise of chivalry. It is therefore especially intriguing to find in the Morte Darthur the irreverent figure of Dinadan, a knight more ready for a jest rather than a joust, a clown whose words and deeds ridicule chivalric customs. His light treatment of chivalric norm and of courtly love sets him apart from the otherwise traditionally-minded Camelot. On the one hand, Dinadan may be viewed as Malory’s touch of comedy and common-sense in his late medieval treatment of the old, quaint world. On the other hand, Dinadan’s irreverence may be seen as a serious breach in the otherwise didactically idealised image of Arthur’s Britain. The presence of Dinadan complicates the moral appeal of Malory’s Camelot and brings a dose of ambivalence and a lack of clear didactic closure into the text.
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    Investigating dialectal variation in the English of Nigerian university graduates: Methodology and pilot study
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Akande, Akinmade Timothy
    This paper describes the methodological procedures that will be used in the collection of data for a dialectal study of the English of Nigerian university graduates. It also reports on a pilot study carried out on this topic. The major elicitation instrument will be a Labovian sociolinguistic interview which will be supplemented by reading materials (Labov 1966). The study will also draw heavily on the current SuRE methodology by Upton and Llamas (1999). The theoretical framework that will be used in the analysis of data will be a diglossia model as this approach enables one to view Nigerian English (NE) and Nigerian Pidgin English (NPE) as two languages operating in an extended diglossic situation.
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    Inverse binding and the status of the Spec. TP position in Polish
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Tajsner, Przemysław
    If the object DP in “inverted” OVS orders in Polish is anaphoric, then there is a question of the satisfaction of anaphoric A-binding in this new position. One type of examples suggests that there is no reconstruction at LF, hence the movement is to an A-position. Other cases seem to indicate the extension of the binding domain. Nonetheless, more facts from Polish point to contrary assumptions. First, object DPs with anaphoric possessives seem to be reconstructed at LF in base positions and there are examples suggesting no extension of the binding domain. The paper offers an account of these perplexingly contradictory facts in terms of the Thematic Hierarchy (Grimshaw 1990) and the specific First Merge properties of “quirky” subjects for some object experiencer verbs (e.g. podobać się) and psych-causative (frightentype) verbs (irytować). Such subjects do enter the derivation in Spec.vP but rather in Spec.VP positions. In conclusion, it is argued that the OVS configurations in Polish do not differ in principle from so-called Dislocation structures, featuring the OSV order (contrary to Baylin 2003 and Witkoś 2007).
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    Some pragmatic considerations in the choice between this or that in English narrative discourse
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Saeed, Aziz Thabit
    This study attempts to explore the principles that govern the choice of demonstratives (proximal vs. distal) in English narrative discourse and the pragmatic effects that such choices create in discourse. To do this, the author analyzed the occurrences of demonstratives in two highly dialogue- type novels. Findings of the analysis revealed two major principles that tend to determine the type of demonstrative to use in a certain context, namely the contextual environment in which the demonstrative occurs and the subjective attitude of the speaker/writer. The study highlights the communicative purposes that demonstratives can convey under each of these two major conditions.
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    Evaluative meaning and its cultural significance
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Drazdauskiene, Maria Liudvika
    In the framework of traditional descriptive semantics, evaluative meaning is defined as an aspect of affective meaning. By virtue of its general positive and negative evaluation, evaluative meaning finds its place in the compartment of interpersonal meaning in functional linguistics. The concept of evaluative meaning is also in agreement with the categorisation of meaning in contemporary stylistics. Having stated its spread and disagreement with logic, the cultural significance of evaluative meaning is analysed in this article. Employing the contextual and binary methods of analysis, it has been shown that much of cultural significance in fiction and the image of culture in general owes much to evaluative meaning. It is both plain evaluation and its emotive component that increase the potential of evaluative meaning in fiction and render most delicate senses in it. In fiction, evaluative meaning ranges from rude and moderate name calling to metaphor and irony at the other extreme. The chosen methods appear sufficient in the analysis of evaluative meaning, while its expressiveness is shown to gain much because of its logical inconsistency.
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    Prepositional entries in English-Polish dictionaries
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Adamska-Sałaciak, Arleta
    The present paper examines the microstructure of entries devoted to prepositions in bilingual English-Polish dictionaries. Given the problems inherent in the lexicographic treatment of function words, it seems worthwhile to ask: – what are the strategies employed in cases of lack of interlingual equivalence? – what is the preferred type of sense-structure (i.e. source-language based, target-language based or mixed)? – does the entry highlight links between related senses? – how much phraseology is deemed necessary to present the properties of the preposition in question? – how does the choice of entry organisation affect its usefulness and user-friendliness? – what possible improvements could be introduced? Answers to the above questions are believed to have implications for lexicography in general, not merely bilingual lexicography in the English-Polish context.
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    Shipping news
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Fries, Udo
    Reports on the movement of shipping vessels in and out of English harbours have appeared as newsworthy items among English news reports from the very beginning of English newspaper publication. The earliest examples in the ZEN Corpus, which was used for this study, date from 1671. As shipping news grew in importance they acquired the status of a separate text class and were printed with specific headlines, such as SHIP NEWS, PORT NEWS, or HOME PORTS. This paper describes the beginnings of the text class as colourful reports, its growth during the 18th century, and its apparent decline towards the end of the century, when it became more and more formulaic and telegraphic in style and moved away from news reports to the advertisement section.
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    On the correlation between A-type scrambling and lack of Weak Crossover effects
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Witkoś, Jacek
    This paper explores certain properties of word orders in Polish clauses with monotransitive verbs where the object is moved to the clause initial position across the subject. We briefly present two current accounts of such word orders in Russian (Baylin 2003 and Slioussar 2005, 2006) and conclude that both seem to capture certain properties of inverted constructions, though the genuine picture, at least for Polish, is still more complex. Most importantly, while OVS constructions unambiguously show that the movement of the object forms an A-type chain, OSV constructions are less straightforward, as the chain formed by the object can show both A-type and A-bar type properties. We propose a derivational account of this ambiguity and subsequently attempt to find a positive correlation between A-type properties of the fronting of the object and lack, or at least a strong suppression, of WCO effects in Polish.
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    General attitudinal meanings in RP intonation
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Hlebec, Boris
    The article takes a cognitive view of the attitudinal meanings of RP intonation. A summary statement is included about previous authors’ views on attitudes conveyed by pitch direction. Data on intonation patterns concentrating on pitch level are followed by the labels of emotional attitudes from phonetic literature. These descriptive labels are brought into correlation with a large number of metaphoric phrases and fixed collocations and expressions which give a clue to structural metaphors for emotional attitudes. In this way, strict regularities in correspondences have been found between the triangle made up of nucleus + head variations, emotions as labelled in phonetic literature, and EMOTION IS TEMPERATURE metaphors. Metonymy also plays a part: emotion stands for a bodily sensation felt during the emotion. These regularities are believed to underlie and govern the use of intonation tunes. Expressing one’s general emotional attitude by means of varying pitch level is seen as a conjunction of two interrelated principal analogies: EMOTION = TEMPERATURE (metaphorically and metonymically) and VOICE PITCH = TEMPERATURE (in terms of the effect of vibrations of air molecules), which produces the expression of EMOTION by means of VOICE PITCH. Specifically, attitudes associated with a pleasant high temperature (warm) are conveyed by means of a combination of a high head and a high nucleus. The combination of the high head and the low nucleus emanates coolness (typically pleasant low temperature, untypically unpleasant low temperature). Attitudes associated with unpleasant low temperature (cold) are produced by a joint effect of a low head and a low nucleus, while associations with unpleasant high temperature (hot) are expressed as a unity of a low head and a high nucleus.
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    Chinese loanwords in the OED
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) de la Cruz Cabanillas, Isabel
    It was traditionally assumed that Chinese had contributed few borrowings into English until Cannon (1987, 1988, 1990) carried out his research based on different English desk-dictionaries. His studies were supplemented by Moody (1996) who reviewed Cannon’s list focusing on the information provided by the Oxford English dictionary (henceforth OED) and Webster’s third new international dictionary of the English language. Nonetheless, Moody’s analysis did not explore all the possibilities the OED offered at the time. This articles aims at revising those previous pieces of work on the topic to find out whether there are significant changes in view of the latest data supplied by the OED, to determine whether there is an increase in the number of items borrowed, which are the transmission and source languages and to see whether any predictions for the near future can be made. Finally, some comments on the transliteration of the terms are also included.
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    Natural syntax: English reported speech
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Orešnik, Janez
    Natural Syntax is a developing deductive theory, a branch of Naturalness Theory. The naturalness judgements are couched in naturalness scales, which proceed from the basic parameters (or “axioms”) listed at the beginning of this paper. The predictions of the theory are calculated in the deductions, whose chief components are a pair of naturalness scales and the rules governing the alignment of corresponding naturalness values. Parallel and chiastic alignments are distinguished, in complementary distribution. Chiastic alignment is mandatory in deductions limited to unnatural environments. This paper exemplifies Natural Syntax using language data associated with reported speech in Standard English. Some of the deductions compare direct and indirect speech, and some operate within direct speech or within indirect speech. Special attention is directed toward the verbal nucleus of the reporting clause and on frequency phenomena as defined under 1 below in criteria (d) and (e).
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    Finiteness, subjunctives, and negation in English
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Anderson, John M.
    This paper pursues the analysis of finiteness and subjunctives in English proposed in Anderson (2001b), in the context of the approach to finiteness adopted in Anderson (1997, 2001a, 2006b, 2007). Thus it defends the position that the Present-day English subjunctive is non-finite, if finiteness is equated with the capacity to license independent sentencehood. In particular, I present here some further evidence for such an analysis deriving from the syntax of negation. Specifically, the position of the negative with the “present” subjunctive is the position associated with the negating of a non-finite form. And positional behaviour under negation is also in accord with the idea that the subjunctive “periphrasis” with should, as well as the “past subjunctive” is also non-finite. The phenomena addressed are incompatible, however, with definitions of finiteness based on the presence of particular morphological categories.
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    Twice and constituency
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2008) Dixon, R. M. W.
    It is not the case that two times may always be substituted by twice (and three times by thrice). This may be done when time has a frequency or quantity sense, not when it refers to temporal location. And, although both frequency and quantity senses of time may be used in a comparative construction, the sequence two plus times is not always replaceable by twice. This is only possible when two and times belong to the same constituent.
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