Studia Anglica Posnaniensia, 2021 vol. 56s1


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    In memory of the late Professor Jacek Fisiak, 1936–2019
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Dylewski, Radosław
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    Strength and weakness of the Old English adjective
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Malak, Janusz
    As regards Old English, the inflectional strength and weakness are characterised by a kind of inconsistency. In the case of Old English adjectives these two inflectional properties appear to be different from those associated with nouns and verbs. In the case of the latter the two properties seem to be lexically determined while in the case of adjectives they appear to be determined by syntactic conditions. The traditional accounts of the Old English grammar attribute two paradigms to one adjectival lexical item. The analysis presented in this article postulates that one can actually speak about one adjectival inflection and what is traditionally presented as strong and weak adjectival inflections is actually the result of two different syntactic derivations.
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    The manuscripts of the Middle English "Lay Folks’ Mass Book" in context
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Smith, Jeremy J.
    This paper, part of a long-term programme of research into the forms and functions of the vernacular in late medieval liturgical practice in England, offers a “cultural map” of the Middle English poem known as The Lay Folks’ Mass Book (LFMB). Comparatively little research has been undertaken on LFMB since Simmons’s edition of 1879. However, new developments in the study of manuscript-reception in particular regions of the Middle English-speaking areas of Britain, combined with greater understanding of the cultural dynamics of “manuscript miscellanies” and of medieval liturgical practice, allow us to reconstruct with greater certainty the contexts within which LFMB was copied and used. LFMB survives in nine late medieval copies, but each copy presented a distinct version of the text. This article brings together linguistic, codicological, liturgical, and textual information, showing in detail how the poem was repurposed for a range of different cultural functions. In geographical terms, it seems clear that the work circulated in Derbyshire/Nottinghamshire, in Yorkshire, and in Norfolk, and can thus be related to other texts circulating in those areas. Some versions are likely to have emerged in parochial settings, possibly owned by local priests. There is also evidence that the text could be deployed in monastic contexts, while other versions probably formed part of the reading of pious gentry. What emerges from a study of the codices in which copies of LFMB were transmitted is that a range of shaping sensibilities for these manuscripts may be distinguished; the authorial role in texts such as LFMB was balanced with that of their copyists and audiences. In the manuscripts containing LFMB creativity was negotiated within textually-transmitted communities of practice.
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    Word-initial prevocalic [h-] in Middle English
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Wełna, Jerzy
    The present contribution discusses the phonological reality of initial fricative h- in words of Germanic and French origin in dialectally identified 106 texts from the Innsbruck Corpus of Middle English Prose (Markus 2008), with the focus on native words where initial h- is frequently mute, as confirmed by (a) h-less spellings like ouse for house or especially (b) the use of the article an before h-nouns. In the early texts a phrase like an house may testify to the survival of the historical determiner (OE ān) put before both initial vowels and consonants, but in later texts this position may indicate mute initial h- in the following noun (or in an adjective before a noun). The paper offers numerical data concerning such distributions in particular Corpus texts as well as analogous data referring to the adjectives MIN and THIN (later on my and thy), where the final nasal consonant was lost when used in the function of an attribute. Consequently, this development led to the rise of a set of possessive adjectives with a syntactic, not phonological, distribution The data from the Innsbruck Corpus seem to indicate that an early loss of initial prevocalic h- in Middle English words of Germanic origin took place in particular texts rather than in texts from the whole region. The evidence from the Corpus shows that the implementation of the contemporary distribution, i.e., a before consonants and an before vowels, had a partly regional character, its first traces coming from as early as the 13th century.
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    The grammaticalization of the epistemic adverb perhaps in Late Middle and Early Modern English
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Molencki, Rafał
    Old and Early Middle English did not yet have modal sentential adverbs of low probability. Old Norse did not have such words, either. From the 13th century onwards first epistemic prepositional phrases of Anglo-Norman origin functioning as modal adverbials consisting of the preposition per/par and nouns such as adventure, case, chance were borrowed into Middle English. In the late 15th century an analogous hybrid form per-hap(s), the combination of the Old French preposition per/par ‘by, through’ and the Old Norse noun hap(p) ‘chance’, both singular and plural, was coined according to the same pattern and was gradually grammaticalized as a univerbated modal sentence adverb in Early Modern English. The Norse root happ- was the source of some other new (Late) Middle English words which had no cognate equivalents in the source language: the adjective happy with its derivatives happily, happiness, etc. and the verb happen. Together with another new Late Middle English formation may-be, a calque of French peut-être, perhaps superseded the competing forms mayhap, (modal) happily, percase, peradventure, perchance, prepositional phrases with the noun hap and, finally, per-hap itself in Early Modern English after two centuries of lexical layering or multiple synonymy. The history of perhaps is a clear example of grammaticalization, whereby a prepositional phrase became a modal adverb now also used as a discourse marker. We find here all the typical features of the process: phonetic attrition, decategorization, univerbation, and obligatorification.
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    Spatio-temporal systems in Shakespeare’s dialogues: A case from "Julius Caesar"
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Nakayasu, Minako
    The purpose of this paper is to conduct the first systematic analysis of the spatio-temporal systems in Shakespeare’s dialogues along the lines of historical pragmatics and discourse analysis. The text used for analysis is The Riverside Shakespeare edited by Evans (1997). Language employs spatio-temporal systems by which the speakers judge how distant the situations they wish to express are from their domain. Such relationships of space and time are embodied by spatio-temporal elements such as pronouns, demonstratives, adverbs, tenses, and modals, with a proximal (close) and distal (distant) distinction. These elements can be related to each other to take either a proximal or distal perspective not only in either the spatial or temporal domain, but also in the integrated spatio-temporal domain. The speakers can continue to take the same perspective, or alternate different perspectives, in discourse. However, few studies have attempted such a comprehensive analysis of spatio-temporal systems in the development of English, not to mention in its Early Modern period. This paper performs both quantitative and qualitative analyses of the spatio-temporal systems in Julius Caesar. First, a quantitative analysis of how frequently each element of space and time is employed shows which perspective, i.e., proximal or distal, is likely to be taken. Second, a qualitative analysis reveals how these elements are related with each other to take either proximal or distal perspective, and how these perspectives change in discourse. In these analyses, the present paper pays attention to the interactions between the interlocutors in order to investigate how these interactions in dialogues impact the selection of elements of space and time.
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    The East Anglian dialect of English in the world
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Trudgill, Peter
    In the 17th century, the English region of East Anglia contained many of the major population centres of the British Isles, not least Norwich, England’s second city at that time. One might therefore predict that East Anglian dialects of English would have played a major role in determining the nature of the new colonial Englishes which were first beginning to emerge during this period. This paper considers some of the phonological and grammatical features of East Anglian English which can be argued to have been influential in this way.
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    On the shapes of the Polish word: Phonotactic complexity and diversity
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Zydorowicz, Paulina; Jankowski, Michał; Dziubalska-Kołaczyk, Katarzyna
    The aim of this contribution is to identify the dominant shapes of the Polish word with reference to three criteria: cluster complexity (i.e., cluster size), saturation (the number of clusters in a word), and diversity (in terms of features of consonant description). The dominant word shape is understood as the most frequent or typical skeletal pattern, expressed by means of alternations or groupings of Cs (consonants) and Vs (vowels), e.g., CVCCV etc., or by means of specific features (of place, manner, voice, and the sonorant/obstruent distinction). Our work focuses on 2 aspects of Polish phonotactics: (1) the relation between cluster complexity and saturation of words with clusters, (2) the degrees of diversity in features of place, manner, and voice within clusters. Using corpus data, we have established that only 4.17% of word shapes have no clusters. The dominant word shape for a one-cluster word is CVCCVCV. The most frequent scenario for a word shape is to contain two clusters, of which 67% are a combination of a word initial and a word medial cluster. We have found that: (1) cluster length is inversely proportional to the number of clusters in a word; (2) nearly 73% of word types contain clusters of the same size, e.g., two CCs or two CCCs (Polish words prefer saturation over complexity); (3) MOA is more diversified than POA across clusters and words
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    Agree, Move and the scope of the Phase Impenetrability Condition
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Witkoś, Jacek
    This paper addresses a certain contradiction in the application of the Phase Impenetrability Condition (PIC) to domains involving the long-distance Genitive of Negation (GoN) and wh-movement in Polish. It appears that in syntactic domains of the tensed sentence including an infinitive complement, there is a tension between a long-distance dependency (holding between NEG in the main clause and the embedded object in genitive) and a cyclic operation of wh-movement. The operation of wh-movement, a classic example of Chomsky’s Move, observes cyclicity and the PIC, judging by the standard tests based on reconstruction (Chomsky 1995; Heycock 1995; Fox 1999; Safir 1999; Legate 2003; Witkoś 2003; Lebeaux 2009), while the Agree-based case marking requires the PIC to be inoperative in exactly the same context and in the same domain. Both operations place contradictory requirements on the PIC, which implies that this condition does not apply to them in the same manner: it always holds of Move but does not always hold of Agree.
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    Unpacking the complexity of gender integration in the U.S. military using discourse analysis: The case of servicewomen’s talk around "having to prove themselves"
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Pawelczyk, Joanna
    A quasi-idiomatic expression ‘women have to prove themselves’ reflects various performance pressures and heightened visibility of women functioning in gendered professional spaces as advocated by tokenism theory. It is an example of how discriminatory practice – according to which competent and qualified women entering the culturally masculine professions are explicitly and implicitly expected to work harder for any recognition – gets discoursed in language and becomes a “rhetorically powerful form of talk” (Kitzinger 2000: 124). This paper explores the question: what is it that U.S. servicewomen functioning in the culturally hypermasculine space need to do to prove themselves? To this end, qualitative semi-structured interviews with women veterans of the recent Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts are qualitatively scrutinized with the methods of discourse analysis and conversation analysis to 1) identify practices that U.S. servicewomen engage in to symbolically (re-)claim their place and status in the military, i.e., to prove they belong; 2) find out how the talk around proving emerged in the course of the conversation and how it was further interactionally sustained and/or dealt with in talk-in-interaction. The findings of the micro-level analysis – interpreted through the lenses of tokenism and the category of the ‘honorary man’ – reveal women’s complex and nuanced struggle to fit and find acceptance in the military culture of hypermasculinity. They also re-engage with the ideas of tokenism by demonstrating that various acts of proving, reflecting women’s token status, may concurrently and paradoxically be a means to earn honorary man status.
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    The fate of mid-20th-century sports loanwords from English in Polish
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Dylewski, Radosław; Bator, Magdalena
    In recent years, we have observed a huge influx of vocabulary borrowed from English into Polish; these are words either of English origin or borrowed through English. At the same time, the number and variety of scholarly investigations trying to illustrate the extent of anglicisms in Polish and systematise the semantic fields which draw from English the most have increased. Most of them deal with the latest borrowings, often representing professional jargon or spoken language. In this paper we will discuss anglicisms which entered Polish over sixty years ago and remained in the sports lexicon until today. The article is a tribute to the late professor Jacek Fisiak, who offered the first in-depth analysis of sports vocabulary borrowed from English into Polish. His Ph.D. monograph (1961) and the subsequent article (1964) have shown a special place of sports terminology among anglicisms in Polish. The lexical items which Fisiak collected in the early sixties of the twentieth century have been tested not only in terms of their fate, but also the degree of grammatical and orthographic assimilation, as well as semantic changes the lexemes have undergone. The study is based on two large corpora of Polish: the Narodowy Korpus Języka Polskiego and Odkrywka, comprising texts from the 18th century until the present time.
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    A lesson for covidiots: About some contact induced borrowing of American English morphological processes into Dutch
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Hamans, Camiel
    This paper discusses morphological borrowing from American-English to Dutch. Three processes of non-morphemic word formation are studied: embellished clipping (Afro from African), libfixing (extracting segments from opaque wordforms such -topia from utopia and -(po)calypse from apocalypse) and blending (stagflation < stagnation + inflation). It will be shown that the borrowing of these processes started with borrowing of English lexical material followed by a process of reinterpretation, which subsequently led to the (re-)introduction of the processes in Dutch. Therefore, the traditional distinction between MAT and PAT borrowing turns out to be inadequate. Instead of a clear-cut difference between lexical and morphological borrowing a borrowing cline will be proposed. The respective ends of this cline are MAT and PAT.
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    Polish LGBTQ+-related anglicisms in a language contact perspective
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Witalisz, Alicja
    Research on anglicisms in Polish has nearly a century-long tradition, yet it was Jacek Fisiak’s 1960s–1980s studies on English loanwords that initiated continuous academic interest in anglicisms, coinciding with more intensive English-Polish language contact in post-war Poland. While English loans have been well-researched in the last four decades, the ongoing intensity of English lexical influence on Polish, yielding not only new loans but also new loan types, calls for further studies, especially in the area of quickly developing professional jargons and sociolects. The influx of English-sourced lexis is reflected in the diversity of semantic fields, whose number has grown from 18 (identified in Słownik warszawski 1900–1927) to 45 (Mańczak-Wohlfeld 1995). A semantic field that has been underresearched in studies on Polish anglicisms is the LGBTQ+-related lexis, which has drawn from American English gayspeak, shaped by the post-Stonewall gay rights movement initiated in the 1970s. The language data analysed in this study have been collected in a two-stage procedure, which included manual extraction of anglicisms sourced in a diversified corpus of LGBTQ+-related written texts, published in Polish between 2004 and 2020. The second stage involved oral interviews which served a verification function. The aim of this study is to contribute to the lexicographic attempts at researching English-sourced LGBTQ+-related vocabulary in Polish through its identification, excerption, and classification. Assuming an onomasiological approach to borrowing, we arrange LGBTQ+-related anglicisms on a decreasing foreignness scale to identify the borrowing techniques adopted by the recipient language speakers in the loan nativization process. We also address issues related to the identification and semantics of loans, and sketch areas of research on loan pragmatic functions that need further studies.
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    Dissecting the word: The use of the lexeme 'shit' in selected performances of comedian Dave Chappelle’s stand-up routine
    (Adam Mickiewicz University, 2021) Dylewski, Radosław
    The paper explores the use of the lexeme shit in the corpus of Dave Chappelle’s stand-up specials released between 2000 and 2019. It consists of two parts: theoretical and analytical. The first one presents theoretical and pragmatic considerations connected with stand-up routines, touches upon slang semantics, and depicts the links between Dave Chappelle’s stage persona and the hip hop community. Lastly, it presents the reader with the past and present-day status of the lexeme at issue. In the analytical section of the paper the use of shit in the aforesaid corpus is scrutinized from the semantic angle. The discussion is supplemented with the results culled from the corpus of rap lyrics compiled at the Faculty of English at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań. The paper argues that (i) shit has lost its taboo status and is mainly used in both corpora as a less formal equivalent of stuff, anything and something and (ii) Chappelle’s stage use of shit, even though present in a different context and serving context-specific purposes, corresponds to the use of African American rappers in their song lyrics (assuming that rap lyrics depict African American English, this conclusion can be extended to the sociolect of African Americans).
Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu
Biblioteka Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu
Ministerstwo Nauki i Szkolnictwa Wyższego