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A Study of English Neologisms with Some Comparing Notes on Korean Neologisms

  • The Sociolinguistic Journal of Korea
  • Abbr : 사회언어학
  • 2012, 20(2), pp.367-400
  • Publisher : The Sociolinguistic Society Of Korea
  • Research Area : Humanities > Linguistics

Jinseong Lee 1

1인천대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This study examines how English is reflecting the changing society on neologisms, and how the language and the society is interwoven in neologisms of English. It also investigates English neologisms from the perspective of morphological formation and semantic change. In doing this Korean neologisms are partly dealt with comparatively to bring out the contrastive characters of the two languages. From the sociolinguistic point of view, the data were classified into three categories: society, life style, and people. These were further subdivided into several areas: general affairs, economics, IT new jobs, new technology under the category of society; language, daily lives, leisure, health, food, and apparel under the life style; men and women, men, women, youngsters and the olds under the people. It was found that the categorial classifications of neologisms reveals how social change is reflected on neologisms of each language, and also discloses the way the two languages enrich their expressive power. From the perspective of morphological formation and semantic change, the English data were classified into compounds, new words, verbal phrases, and independent expressions. The compounds were subdivided into simple compounds and compounds within compounds to diagnose the degree of recursive character in English. In the category of new words, the followings were investigated: affixations, blendings, abbreviations, acronyms, euphemisms, semantic shifts, foreign languages, functional shifts, coinages and clippings. The distribution of neologisms in regard to their parts of speech was also examined. In comparing notes of the two languages, the followings are provided: first, sociocultural character reflected on neologisms; second, the frequencies and characterizations of neologisms from morphological perspectives; third, the distribution of parts of speech.

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