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Language, Heart, and Mind

Studies at the intersection of emotion and cognition

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Edited By Barbara Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk, Valeria Monello and Marco Venuti

A major premise of this book is that language use is critically conditioned by affective content and cognitive factors rather than being a case of objective computation and manipulation of structures. The 21 chapters of this book deals with how language interacts with emotion, and with mind and cognition, from both intralingual and cross-linguistic perspectives. The second major focus is the theoretical framework, best-suited for research relationships between language, cognition, and emotion as well as the effect that emotion has on the conceptualizer who constructs meanings based on language stimuli. Furthermore, the authors investigate how emotion and rational projections of events interact and what their consequences are in the conceptual world, media discourse, and translation.

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2. With Rhyme and Reason: Revisiting Roman Jakobson’s “Linguistics and Poetics” (Iain Halliday)

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Iain Halliday

Abstract Through consideration of a close rereading of Jakobson’s seminal 1960 essay, this contribution seeks to address the vexed question of relations between the study of language and the study of literature: is it possible to reconcile the two? Is there some “third way” by which “heart and mind” – to make recourse to two shorthand metaphors – can be given equally valid significance in the interpretation and analysis of texts? Attention will be given to both of those foregrounded metaphors just mentioned, together with a consideration of the metaphor conveyed in the title of the contribution, a metaphor evidently deriving from the common colloquial oppositional phrase in English. “With neither rhyme nor reason” and its variants are set-piece, formulaic locutions, normally found in negative forms when we seek to express our total lack of esteem for some product, usually linguistic or artistic, and thus to dismiss it completely as pointless. Linguist David Crystal once wrote, “Language is the main means whereby people communicate. It is also, ironically, the main means whereby people fail to communicate.” (p. 341) Instances of the use of ‘rhyme or reason’ locutions occur often in situations where there is a drastic failure in communication, one that leads to the dismissal inherent in the “oppositional”, adversative formula – rhyme or reason (nor reason in the more elegant, “neither rhyme nor reason”). It almost seems to infer that any discourse, any attempt at communicating, must be one thing or the other, must be fish or flesh,...

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