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Meaning. The Montillation of Traxoline

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The Montillation of Traxoline

Traxoline is a new form of zionter. It is montilled in Ceristanna. Ceristannians gristeriate large amounts of fevon and bracter it into quasel traxoline. Traxoline may well be one of our most lukized snezlaus in the future because of our zionter lescelidge.

  • What is traxoline?
  • Where is traxoline montilled?
  • How is traxoline quaselled?
  • Why is it important to know about traxoline?
theories of meaning
Theories of Meaning

1) Definition

  • Triangle b) Table c) Terror

2) Denotation

3) Image/Concept


1) Without thinking too much about it, write a figure down for each of the following:

  • John lives close to school. How near does he live?
  • Janet is a heavy smoker. How many cigarettes does she smoke a day?
  • Mr Smith is middle-aged. How old is he?
  • Nafisha’s mother earns a lot of money. What is her annual income?

2) In groups of four.

  • Pair 1 role play the following conversation without using any vague language. Pair 2 listen for vagueness:
    • sitting next to a friend on the bus to school in the morning.
  • Pairs reverse roles for following conversation:
    • sitting next to a friend on the bus home from school in the afternoon.

3) Why do we use vague language?


1) What two different meanings could each of the following sentences mean?

  • Flying planes can be dangerous
  • The wise men found Mary and Joseph and the baby lying in the manger.
  • Visiting relatives can be boring.
  • I didn’t sleep with my wife before we were married. Did you?
  • Refuse to be put in the basket.

2) Write five similarly ambiguous sentences.

3) Many jokes are based on ambiguity. Can you think of any?

secondary meaning connotation
Secondary meaning/Connotation

1) When Bill was president, Hillary wanted to be known as ‘Presidential Partner’ rather than ‘First Lady’. Why?

2) What would be a good title for Bill if Hillary ever became president?

3) What are the different connotations of each of the following sets of words?

  • slender, skinny, thin
  • stubborn, steadfast, firm
  • energetic, spirited, wild

4) Find words or expressions with similar meanings for each of the following. What is the difference in their connotations?

  • friendly
  • imaginative
  • quiet

My brother is a butcher / My dentist is a butcher / My butcher is an artist

1) Explain the difference between the following two sentences. Is either of them true? If so, in what sense?

  • ‘No man is an island’
  • ‘No man is a banana’

2) Take an article from this week's The Economist. Identify as many metaphors in it as you can. Try to replace the metaphors with straightforward language.


'Any more bright ideas, Einstein?' as your friend makes a stupid suggestion.

1) Write 5 more examples of irony.

translation problems
Translation Problems

1) Try translating these English idioms into another language:

  • David is barking up the wrong tree.
  • Tina threw a spanner in the works.
  • Samuel was only pulling your leg.
  • Daniela is resting on her laurels.

2) Think of four other English idioms and try translating them.

3) Do you know any interesting idioms in languages other than English? What would be a literal translation, but what do they really mean?

4) What kinds of text do you think are easiest to translate from one language into another? What kinds of text do you think are the most difficult? Why?

5) What would be the advantages/disadvantages of having just one ‘world language’?

words as labels
Words as ‘Labels’

What predictions/assumptions can you make based on the following labels?

  • Dog
  • Tiger
  • Teacher
  • Bread
  • Mushroom

How many different ways could you group together two or more of the following? In each case, what criterion of commonality are you using?

a) book b) cake c) car d) pig

e) cow f) pencil g) snake h) paint





classifying people
Classifying people
  • What assumptions might you reasonably make about someone based upon their nationality?
  • What assumptions might you reasonably make about a person based upon their star sign?
  • How else might you classify people and what assumptions might these classifications lead you to make?
    • Are some of these ways more natural than others?
    • Are some more useful than others?
  • What stereotypes, if any, do you think exist in your culture concerning the following groups?

a) Americans b) Feminists c) Muslims

d) Lawyers e) Buddhists f) Scientists

g) Environmentalists h) Computer hackers


2) Which of the following pairs of sentences sounds normal, and which sounds odd?

  • She’s a mother, but she isn’t a housewife
  • She’s a mother, but she is a housewife
  • He’s a father, but he doesn’t have a job.
  • He’s a father, but he does have a job.

3) In your culture, which of the following adjectives are associated more with men and which are associated more with women?

a) Emotional b) Reckless c) Active

d) Cautious e) Sensitive f) Tough

g) Affectionate h) Aggressive i) Intuitive

How much truth do you think there is in these stereotypes?