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Revista signos

On-line version ISSN 0718-0934


OLZA, Inés  and  LOSADA, Mª Carmen. Co(n)textual supports in the discursive use of phraseological units. Rev. signos [online]. 2011, vol.44, n.76, pp.132-144. ISSN 0718-0934.

The aim of this article is to define and describe the tendency -that is observed in the discursive use of phraseological units- by which these units are frequently coordinated in their near co(n)text with other lexical and phraseological expressions that orient and specify their interpretation and can be, thus, labelled as ‘co(n)textual supports’. The paper firstly examines this tendency in the frame of the disciplines-on the one hand, cognitive linguistics and psycholinguistics, and, on the other hand, text linguistics and text semantics-that have analyzed how the linguistic co(n)text orients the use and interpretation of fixed expressions. In the second place, on the basis of the data obtained for three expressions of the FRASESPAL corpus (coger el toro por los cuernos, no tener pelos en la lengua/sin pelos en la lengua and tener/quedar a alguien mucha vida por delante), we open some ways of analysis of the quantitative relevance of the occurrence of these co(n)textual supports in the discursive use of idioms. Finally, we present a typology of the units that function more often as co(n)textual supports: expressions that paraphrase the initial phraseological meaning; expressions that highlight a specific seme of this meaning; lexical and phraseological units that are synonymous with the ‘central’ expression they co-occur with; and lexical and phraseological units that are antonymous with the ‘central’ expression. The typology is based on the FRASESPAL data, which are drawn mainly from the Corpus de Referencia del Español Actual (CREA) and also-though secondarily-from the Internet.

Keywords : Phraseology; discourse; figurative meaning; cognitive linguistics; text linguistics.

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