This work analyzes diminutives in three Ancient Greek comedies by Aristophanes. Although this work may not be strictly defined as morphopragmatic in the very specific sense of the term provided by Dressler & Merlini Barbaresi (1994: 56-7), many considerations emerged within this theoretical framework. Ancient Greek diminutives were usually considered as related to gender: Fögen (2004: 228) refers to diminutives only as markers of emotion, with a “general tendency of women to be more affective or emotional than men”. However, data emerging from the analysis of Aristophanes’ three female comedies do not justify this claim. Another interpretation may be advanced: diminutives could be seen as markers of subjectivity, since they fulfill the function of indexing a speaker’s perspective, viewpoint and attitude (Athanasiadou 2007: 554), and also of affecting the addressee’s positive and negative faces (Brown & Levinson 1987).

Diminutives in Ancient Greek : Intensification and Subjectivity / C. Meluzzi (STUDIES IN LANGUAGE COMPANION SERIES). - In: Exploring Intensification : Synchronic, diachronic and cross-linguistic perspectives / [a cura di] M. Napoli, M. Ravetto. - [s.l] : John Benjamins, 2017. - ISBN 9789027259547. - pp. 127-146 (( convegno Intensity, intensification and intensifying tenutosi a Vercelli nel 2015 [10.1075/slcs.189.07mel].

Diminutives in Ancient Greek : Intensification and Subjectivity

C. Meluzzi
2017

Abstract

This work analyzes diminutives in three Ancient Greek comedies by Aristophanes. Although this work may not be strictly defined as morphopragmatic in the very specific sense of the term provided by Dressler & Merlini Barbaresi (1994: 56-7), many considerations emerged within this theoretical framework. Ancient Greek diminutives were usually considered as related to gender: Fögen (2004: 228) refers to diminutives only as markers of emotion, with a “general tendency of women to be more affective or emotional than men”. However, data emerging from the analysis of Aristophanes’ three female comedies do not justify this claim. Another interpretation may be advanced: diminutives could be seen as markers of subjectivity, since they fulfill the function of indexing a speaker’s perspective, viewpoint and attitude (Athanasiadou 2007: 554), and also of affecting the addressee’s positive and negative faces (Brown & Levinson 1987).
Ancient Greek; diminutives; intensification; subjectivity; morpho-pragmatics
Settore L-LIN/01 - Glottologia e Linguistica
Università del Piemonte Orientale
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2434/856595
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