Luminiţa Traşcă (verteidigt)

Information densification in contemporary Romanian written styles: a corpus-based study of transfer, frequency and change

ErstbetreuerProf. Dr. Dr. h. c. Christian Mair
ZweitbetreuerProf. Dr. Stefan Pfänder

My study proposes an empirical corpus-based analysis of noun+noun constructions in contemporary written Romanian, born out of a mixture of socio-cultural phenomena during the past decades and having tremendous implications on the understanding of language change and cultural kinship. This study is situated at the intersection of several fields of research, namely morphological typology, stylistics, corpus linguistics and cognitive linguistics. In my project, I relate and systematically compare frequency effects of a given linguistic phenomenon in the Romanian language system to those occurring in another, contemporary language systems, namely English, as well as other Romance languages (Spanish and Italian).

Moreover, in my research I pursue the notion of attractors. Seen in the context of information compression in written styles, the following major historical events lead to the emergence, spread, high frequency and saliency of proper noun + attractor constructions: notable presidencies (see, for instance, the attractors "administration" and "government"), international treats (see attractor "pact") involving holders of power (see "president," "leader" and "director"), prominent lawsuits (see attractor "case"), revolutionary decrees (see attractor "law") or acts (see "plan," "proposal," "initiative"), or striking economic-political scandals (see attractors "scandal" and "affair"). The fact that these events get increased attention in the media (read more tokens and types), catapult these elements in the company of story-related proper nouns to the status of attractors.

DisziplinEnglish Studies
SprachenEnglish, Romanian
ForschungsrichtungLanguage change, language economy, constructional transfer
SchlüsselbegriffeConstruction grammar, contemporary newspaper language, Romanian