«Gegengabe» in Paremiology, Folklore, Language, and Literature – Honoring Wolfgang Mieder on His Seventieth Birthday
Edited By Christian Grandl and Kevin J. McKenna
The Proverb and Its Definition: A Ka:rmik Linguistic Approach
Proverbs are language and as such they inherit the properties of language. As language, they are created through the medium of sound in patterned structures at the level of phonology, morphology, and syntax to semiotically represent meaning, also, in definite patterns to perform certain functions. These patterned structures representing meaning and performing functions are products of cognitions of individuals (vyashti) generalized at the collective (samashti) level of the society or culture. Furthermore, these cognitions themselves are patterned and are derived a:nushangikally from the svabha:vam (disposition) of the individuals as the society – a:nushangikally means that in a set, each following member inherits the properties of the former member in addition to its own property; it can also be a cause-effect constituting set in which A is the cause of B and so on. What is more, the svabha:vam which is the cause (ka:raNam) for the impressionality or internalized habituation (va:sana) in cognitions is the result of the karma the individuals, as constituting the society, performed. Hence, the properties of proverbs as language span across the formal (structural), functional, cognitive, sva:bha:vik, and ka:rmik levels of action.
Proverbs are also a genre of language and as such they will have their own generic properties. These properties can be secondary, essential, uncommon, and impossible. The secondary properties are differentially distributed among the same genre and can equally be found in other genres also in...
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