Diction. By 陈烽. Levels of Words The Meaning of Words General and specific words Idioms Dictionary. Levels of Words. Non-standard slang words dialectal words. Standard English formal common colloquial. Formal words (examples in the book). learned words
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Diction By 陈烽
Levels of Words • The Meaning of Words • General and specific words • Idioms • Dictionary
Levels of Words • Non-standard • slang words • dialectal words Standard English formal common colloquial
Formal words (examples in the book) • learned words • words used in encyclopedias, political and legal documents • words used by educated people and scholarly or professional communities • long, difficult
Common words (examples in the book) • the word people know from everydaycommunication • words most often used
Colloquial words (examples in the book) • the word used by people in informal conversations • oral • contractions
The Meaning of Words Denotative Connotative
Denotative meaning • the meaning you can find in the dictionary • The dictionary gives information about where the word comes from and how to know the difference between the word and other words.
Connotative meaning • the feeling or idea suggested by the word • the meaning you can know from popular TV shows, movies, music, magazines and website content • not an “exact” meaning—the hearer must look at the context to understand the meaning
Politician (denotative) • someone who has power and uses it to do things; • usually a person who has a position in government
Politician (Connotative) • someone who likes power and will do wrongful things to gain power (wrongful things like tricks, lies, maneuvers, and pandering); • someone who doesn’t care about what is good, and just tries to get as much power as they can
Rock ‘n Roll (denotative) • A kind of music • Started from jazz in the 1950s • Elvis Presley, the Beatles • Guitars, drums, singing • Fast • Started today’s genres like punk, heavy metal, soft rock, hard rock, rockabilly, grunge, etc.
Rock ‘n Roll (Connotative) • A way of living • My body is art; my clothes are art; my lifestyle is art; and my music is art. • Express oneself; don’t worry about the results • Parties, drinking, music for pleasure, free love, no worries, avoid responsibility
Pessimist (denotative) • someone who views some part of life as unworthy; • Christian pessimism asserts that this world will be destroyed and all of life’s riches and pleasures will disappear; so people had better store up “treasures in heaven” or they will have nothing—a Christian pessimist will avoid success.
Pessimist (Connotative) • someone who sees the “bad side” of things; • An optimist sees the glass as ‘half full’; a pessimist sees the glass as ‘half empty’; • someone who has a bad attitude • someone who expects bad things to happen, doesn’t hope for good things, and doesn’t put their faith in goodness
Cynic (denotative) • The cynical tradition of Ancient Greece • The cynics: a group of people who helped people to question their beliefs and find new truths. • Cynicism: a kind of critical thinking
Cynic (Connotative) • Someone who thinks people deserve to be cheated. • Someone who thinks that someone who does something good really has bad reason for doing it. • Someone who has no hope or faith.
Epicurean (denotative) • A person from a group of people in Ancient Greece who believed that one person should take care of themselves before they serve others • Epicureanism: the belief that people should know their own interests, fulfill those interests, and by doing so benefit society
Epicurean (Connotative) • Someone who loves delicious food • Someone who loves pleasure • Someone who greatly fears pain and will do immoral things in order to avoid it
No words are exactly the same. 1. Stylistic level: Informal and formal ask time rise question age mount interrogate epoch ascend 2. Emphatic a big/large city a big/large house The team has got a huge man over two meters tall. 3. Emotional Coloring small/ little 4. Tone modest /humble (laudatory and derogatory) 5. Different Collocations large amount/number/quantity great courage/ confidence/ ability/ wisdom
The more specific, the better. General and Specific Words good nice The students went out of the classroom.
Colorful words and phrases • walk slowly • fall down • poor • hungry • red • eat a lot • weak • stroll • crash • Impoverished • starving • scarlet • debauch • lame • meander • face-plant • destitute • famished • crimson • stuff • feeble
Colorful words and phrases • gulp • soaking • abandon • stinky • pull a fast one • act rude • space • (in) a flash • (get) burned • furious • down guzzle • wringing wet, water-logged • foul • bamboozle • get surly • have a brain fart • break-neck speed • (get) screwed • boiling with rage • drink • wet • give up • bad smelling • cheat • bad manners • forget • fast • (get) cheated • angry
English is rich in idioms. 1. Phrasal verbs put up with / turn out / look forward to / carry on 2. N+prep. +n. the apple of one’s eye; like a fish out of water 3. Prep. +n. on the air; at length 4. V. +n. Kill two birds with one stone; go to the dogs 5. As…as as easy as a pie; as poor as a church mouse 6. Sayings One man’s meat is another man’s poison. A stitch in time saves nine.
Dictionary —Your Lifetime Teachers How to use a dictionary Some dictionaries
1. “common” • Common refers to that which is met with most frequently or is shared by all or most individuals in a group, body, etc, and may imply prevalence , usualness, or, in a depreciatory sense , inferiority • a common belief • a common hussy
Any synonyms? • General implies connection with all or nearly all of a kind, class, or group and stresses extensiveness • general unrest among the people • Ordinary implies accordance with the regular or customary pattern, stressing commonplaceness and lack of special distinction • an ordinary work day
More? • Familiar applies to that which is widely known and readily recognized • a familiar feeling • Popular implies widespread currency , acceptance, or favor among the general public or the common people • a popular song
2. “obstinate” • Stubbornly adhering to an attitude, opinion, or course of action; obdurate. • Difficult to manage, control, or subdue; refractory. • Difficult to alleviate or cure: an obstinate headache. • [Middle English obstinat, from Latin obstin tus, past participle of obstin re, to persist; see st - in Indo-European roots.] • ob sti·nate·ly adv. • ob sti·nate·ness n.
Any synonyms? • Stubborn refers to innate, often perverse resoluteness or unyieldingness • She was very stubborn when her mind was made up. • One who is headstrong is stubbornly, often recklessly willful • The headstrong teenager ignored school policy. • Stiff-necked implies stubbornness combined with arrogance or aloofness • The stiff-necked customer blamed the cashier.
More? • Bullheaded suggests foolish or irrational obstinacy, and pigheaded, stupid obstinacy • Don't be bullheaded; see a doctor. • Mulish implies the obstinacy and intractability associated with a mule • Obstinate is no word for it, for she is mulish. • Dogged emphasizes stubborn perseverance: dogged persistence; • The dogged strength in him keeps himself from giving up.
3. “but” • But is very frequent used in spoken English , where it is often used at the beginning of a sentence • “I read it in a newspaper .” ” But newspapers aren’t always right!” • But is also used in writing, though not usually at the beginning of a sentence.
Any synonyms? • However is used especially in more formal writing , often with commas before and after it in the middle of a sentence • This has been reported in a newspaper . One must remember, however, that newspapers are not always accurate.
What can we learn from a dictionary? • cau•tion (ko:shn) • n. • warning against danger: by way of ~ • attention to safety: with ~ • (informal) an alarming or amusing person • v. • to warn or reprimand. [from Old French caution.] • The policeman ~ed the driver about his speed / for speeding. • The teacher ~ed him against being late / not to be late. • I ~ the children that it is risky. • Spelling • Syllables • Pronunciation • Parts of speech • Meanings • Usage • History of the word
the exact meaning • Respectful: showing respect to others • Be ~ to your seniors. • Respectable: considered socially acceptable • The ex-prisoner is now a ~ citizen. • Respected: admired by many people for one’s qualities or achievements • Professor Yang is a ~ teacher.
what patterns to use • to inform • Please ~us of his arrival. • Our teacher ~ed that the class was moved to next Friday. • inform sb about/of something • inform sb that …
collocations • learn knowledge? • acquire / gain knowledge • drop tears? • shed / weep (tears) • tears well up in one’s eyes • to make achievement? • to do well in … • to achieve considerable success • to achieve good exam results
to love • dearly • deeply • passionately • tenderly • unconditionally • wholeheartedly • Not entirely, fully, completely
Anything else? • He kept me waiting. • I found him working at his desk. • They left me standing outside. • I heard him giving orders.
Dictionaries are lifetime teachers. • They are available any time you want to consult them. • They are knowledgeable and are capable of helping you solve many of your problems. • They are patient and tireless and able to work with you as long as you like.
Some dictionaries English-English dictionary www.yourdictionary.com
Word games • What do they mean? • POSITIVE • NEGATIVE
What do they mean? (Feeling) POSITIVE NEGATIVE ---good ---bad
What do they mean? (ELECTRONICS) POSITIVE NEGATIVE (+)Gives electric current (-)Receives electric current
What do they mean? (MAGNETICS) POSITIVE NEGATIVE ---Attracts objects ---Repels objects
In communication Positive: Posit an idea Suggest an idea Explain an idea Say something that will help someone to feel good
In communication Negate an idea Disagree with a suggestion Explain why something is bad or wrong Say something that might make someone feel bad right now, usually in hopes for good later Negative:
Back to feelings---good about “positive” What’s good about “positive”? Gives people a good feeling Gives people confidence Suggests something people can do
Back to feelings---bad about “negative” What’s bad about “negative”? Gives people a bad feeling Makes people feel weak, or feel like they are fighting Can stop people from taking any action