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Введение в лингвистику = Introduction to Linguistics : a guide for students

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В пособии освещаются ключевые проблемы лингвистики: происхождение языка, морфология, синтаксис, лексикология, семантика, стилистика. В одной из глав рассматривается стилистическая классификация словарного состава, выразительные средства и стилистические приемы английского языка. Теоретический материал дополнен заданиями, цель которых — помочь студентам практически овладеть основами лингвистики, усовершенствовать языковые и переводческие навыки. Каждый раздел сопровождается вопросами и упражнениями для контроля усвоения знаний — эти задания могут использоваться как на учебных занятиях с преподавателем, так и для самостоятельной работы (самоконтроля). Заключительная часть пособия содержит список лингвистических терминов, а также тексты для дополнительного чтения, посвященные вопросам природы и эволюции языка. Пособие предназначено для студентов гуманитарных факультетов, а также студентов, обучающихся по программе дополнительного образования «Переводчик в сфере профессиональной коммуникации». Кроме того, включенный в пособие материал может быть полезен всем, кто интересуется происхождением, «устройством» и развитием языка.
Никулина, М. А. Введение в лингвистику = Introduction to Linguistics : a guide for students : учебное пособие / М. А. Никулина. - Москва : ФЛИНТА, 2021. - 268 с. - ISBN 978-5-9765-4681-3. - Текст : электронный. - URL: https://znanium.com/catalog/product/1891080 (дата обращения: 12.04.2024). – Режим доступа: по подписке.
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М.А. Никулина

ВВЕДЕНИЕ
В ЛИНГВИСТИКУ

Учебное пособие

INTRODUCTION
TO LINGUISTICS

A guide for students

Москва
Издательство «ФЛИНТА»
2021

УДК 811.111(075.8)
ББК 81.432.1я73
Н65

Ре це нзе нт
д-р филол. наук, проф., проф. кафедры переводоведения
и практики перевода английского языка переводческого факультета 
Московского государственного лингвистического университета
А.Л. Семенов

Никулина М.А.
  Введение в лингвистику : учебное пособие = Introduction to 
Linguistics : a guide for students / М.А. Никулина. — Москва : 
ФЛИНТА, 2021. — 268 с. — ISBN 978-5-9765-4681-3. — Текст : 
электронный.

В пособии освещаются ключевые проблемы лингвистики: происхождение языка, морфология, синтаксис, лексикология, семантика, стилистика. В одной из глав рассматривается стилистическая 
классификация словарного состава, выразительные средства и стилистические приемы английского языка. Теоретический материал 
дополнен заданиями, цель которых — помочь студентам практически овладеть основами лингвистики, усовершенствовать языковые и 
переводческие навыки. Каждый раздел сопровождается вопросами и 
упражнениями для контроля усвоения знаний — эти задания могут 
использоваться как на учебных занятиях с преподавателем, так и 
для самостоятельной работы (самоконтроля). Заключительная часть 
пособия содержит список лингвистических терминов, а также тексты для дополнительного чтения, посвященные вопросам природы и 
эволюции языка.
Пособие предназначено для студентов гуманитарных факультетов, а также студентов, обучающихся по программе дополнительного образования «Переводчик в сфере профессиональной 
коммуникации». Кроме того, включенный в пособие материал 
может быть полезен всем, кто интересуется происхождением, 
«устройством» и развитием языка.

УДК 811.111(075.8)
ББК 81.432.1я73

ISBN 978-5-9765-4681-3 
© Никулина М.А., 2021
© Издательство «ФЛИНТА», 2021

INTRODUCTION

This manual combines a brief course of lectures on linguistics 
with practical exercises — in general, it can be regarded as 
“a linguistic guide”.
The theoretical knowledge of Modern English is an integral 
part of the curriculum for interpreters in the sphere of professional 
communication. This book highlights a number of key issues of 
lexicology and stylistics, thus giving the wholesome picture of “how 
the language is made”. Each lecture is followed by a wordlist, a set 
of tasks and questions.
In the end of the manual, students will fi nd the section 
“Revision”, which will enable them to revise all the themes. Besides, 
this section contains the glossary and the list of topics for essays. 
The section “Supplementary Reading” contains a dozen of texts, 
devoted to the evolution of human language.
This book is aimed at expanding students’ linguistic knowledge, 
raising their level of theoretical competence, developing the ability 
to apply the linguistic analysis to texts of different types.
The author hopes that this manual will considerably contribute 
to the development of professional competence of young interpreters 
and translators, thus helping them in their future career.

Fig. 1. The Structure of Language Sciences

logy

UNIT 1

LANGUAGE AS A MEANS OF COMMUNICATION

1.1. What is Language?

Language is a means of human communication. It may also be 
defi ned as a set of signals used to communicate. Humans are not 
the only species that are endowed with the ability to communicate. 
Animals, too, have a well-defi ned system of communication. For 
example, bees communicate about the location of hives or fl owers, 
fi lled with nectar. Dolphins produce whistling sounds to communicate 
with each other; chimpanzees shout to warn each other about danger. 
Dogs bark or growl differently — depending on the emotions 
experienced by them in different situations. However, no other 
species has a capacity to use language as creatively as humans. People 
can generate an infi nite number of utterances that they have never 
encountered before. Besides, people can express numerous thoughts, 
concepts and ideas, which is absolutely unattainable for animals.
In fact, human language differs from animal system of 
communication not only in essence, but also in the degree of its 
fl exibility, precision, productivity and complexity. The sounds of 
any language are limited but the scope of their use is unlimited. In 
other words, humans have learnt to make an infi nite use of fi nite 
linguistic means.

1.2. The Role and Structure of Human Language

Sometimes language is also defi ned as the basic and marvelously 
complex instrument of culture. It is absolutely impossible to 
imagine our world without language. It is so, because language is, 
probably, the most ancient heritage of humanity. Language exists 

only when it is listened to or when it is spoken. More than anything 
else, language shows, what kind of person we deal with, because it 
is capable of indicating rather precisely such personal characteristics 
of a speaker, as age, education, social status. There is even a popular 
saying: “Speak, and I’ll say, who you are”.
In fact, language is extremely powerful — it can bring people 
together, it can praise, encourage, inspire. But it can also hurt, 
discourage, embarrass, offend and cause a lot of other feelings.
As far as English is concerned, it is a hybrid language, since 
it has “absorbed”, or adopted, numerous phenomena of other 
languages. This openness to borrowings even gave Daniel Defoe 
reasons to call it “your Roman-Saxon-Danish-Norman-English”.
In general, any language consists of three constituent parts: 1) the 
phonological system, 2) the lexical system and 3) the grammatical 
system.

Phonetics is a science which studies the phonic system of the 
language (sounds, intonation, stressed and unstressed syllables, etc.).
Lexicology is a science which studies the word-stock of the 
language, its, so-called, “building material” (words, phrases, etc.).
However, somebody may have perfect pronunciation and 
the richest vocabulary imaginable, but still be unable to speak 
a language, unless he or she knows, how to make up sentences, 
because without knowing the grammatical structure of the language 
proper communication is absolutely impossible.
Grammar is the science, which studies the structure of the 
language. The two parts of grammar are Morphology and Syntax.
Morphology deals with Parts of Speech. Syntax studies the 
Sentence, different types of sentences and their meanings (from “All 
About English Grammar” by A. Saakyan, adapted by M. Nikulina).

1.3. Linguistic Knowledge

Knowing a language implies knowing the rules that govern its 
use and usage. First of all, speakers should have the knowledge of 

its phonetic system, which consists of sounds, the minimal units 
of the language. The section of linguistics which studies sounds of 
the language is called phonetics. All native speakers know exactly, 
which sounds are included and which are not included in the sound 
inventory of their language. Thus, the sound [v] is not a part of the 
sound system of Moroccan Arabic. Most native Moroccan speakers 
would substitute [f] for [v]. For example, the English word vacancy 
would be pronounced by them as facancy. If we analyze the phonetic 
system of the Abkhazian language, we will see that it has only six 
vowels, but this shortage of vowel sounds is compensated by the 
existence of 56 consonants.
But native speakers have an unconscious knowledge not only 
of sounds, included in their mother tongue, but they also know 
intuitively the sound patterns of the language they speak. The 
section of linguistics which studies this aspect of the language is 
called phonology. If you know a language, it means that, among 
other things, you know the restrictions that govern the sound 
clusters — in other words, you know, which phonemes can be used 
in the beginning, in the middle or in the end of most words.
If you learn a foreign language, the difference in the phonetic 
systems between your native language and the foreign language you 
are learning, may often cause, the so called, phonetic interference. 
For example, for Spaniards it is quite diffi cult to pronounce a word, 
which begins with the sound [s]. That is the reason, why, while 
speaking English, many Spaniards add a vowel before [s] at the 
beginning of words — for example, they pronounce scarf as escarf. 
As far as the French language is concerned, its phonetic system 
does not contain the sound [h]. That is why French people would 
pronounce the English word house as [aus], home — as [oum], 
Heatrow — as [i:trou], etc.
Besides, linguistic knowledge of native speakers includes the 
way, in which words are formed and used in sentences. They 
intuitively know, how to assign a meaning to a string of sounds and 
how to form morphemes — the minimal meaningful units of the 
language.

Fortunately, human brain has acquired the capacity to derive words 
through affi xation (using prefi xes or suffi xes), to create new words and 
to borrow some other words from foreign languages. What is more, 
native speakers are able to combine these words to form grammatical 
and acceptable sentences. For example, they know that the following 
sentence is grammatically correct, though it has no logical sense:
Colourless green ideas sleep furiously.
However, the linguistic ability of native speakers involves 
not only their knowledge of grammar rules, but also the rules that 
govern its use in context. This ability is linked with the pragmatic 
aspect of the language. It implies the knowledge of how utterances 
communicate meaning in context — this knowledge is, undoubtedly, 
an essential part of our language ability. Without it, we would be 
using “nonsense language”. For example, we know that a lot of 
words in the English language are polysemantic. It means that the 
same sound form may convey different meanings — for example, a 
well means «колодец», while the word combination very well means 
«очень хорошо». However, we usually do not confuse these words, 
because we can guess their meanings from the context.

WORDLIST

means of communication — средство общения
a set of signals — набор сигналов
species — вид
to be endowed with the ability to communicate — быть наделенным 
способностью общаться
well-defi ned — хорошо определяемый
a hive — улей
whistling sounds — свистящие звуки (to whistle — свистеть)
an infi nite number of sentences or utterances — бесконечное число 
предложений или высказываний
a fi nite number of linguistic means — конечное число языковых средств
the essence — суть, сущность
the degree of smth. — степень чего-либо

fl exibility — гибкость
precision — точность
productivity — продуктивность
complexity — сложность
the scope of use — масштабы использования
a hybrid language — «гибридный» язык
the word-stock — словарный запас
a meaningful unit of language — значимая единица языка
a polysemantic word — многозначное слово
a morpheme — морфема
a vowel — гласный звук
a consonant — согласный звук
phonetics — фонетика
phonology — фонология
morphology — морфология
syntax — синтаксис
phonetic interference — фонетическая интерференция («наложение»)
a string of sounds — цепочка звуков
unconsciously — бессознательно
the meaning “from the context” = the contextual meaning — контекстуальное значение
a native speaker — носитель языка
a native language — родной язык
the section of linguistics — раздел лингвистики
a sound pattern — звуковая модель

EXERCISES

Exercise 1. Choose the correct variant to complete the sentences:

1. Humans are...
a) ...the only species that are endowed with the ability to 
communicate.
b) ...not the only species that are endowed with the ability to 
communicate.
c) ...able to use language as creatively as animals.

2. Language exists...
a) ...only when it is listened to.
b) ...only when it is spoken.
c) ...when it is listened to, as well as when it is spoken.

3. The linguistic ability of native speakers involves...
a) ...only their knowledge of grammar rules.
b) ...not only their knowledge of grammar rules but also the 
rules that govern its use in context.
c) ...only the rules that govern its use in context.

4. The existence of polysemantic words means that...
a) ...the same sound form may have different meanings.
b) ...the same sound form always has the same meaning.
c) ...the number of sounds in a language is unlimited.

5. We usually do not confuse polysemantic words, because...
a) ...we can guess their meanings “from the context”.
b) ...grammatical rules help us to understand their correct 
meanings.
c) ...the sound form of words helps us to understand their 
correct meanings.

Exercise 2. Answer the following questions:

1. How can the language be defi ned?
2. What is the difference between human language and those 
“languages”, which are used by animals?
3. Can language, used by a person, characterize his or her 
personality (cultural level, age, profession, etc.)? Prove your 
opinion.
4. Why can we say that language has power to change our lives?
5. How did Daniel Defoe characterize the English language? What 
reason did he have to call it like that?
6. What are the three constituent parts of any language?
7. What does phonetics study?

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