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The Epistemological Phenomenon of the Interlingual Gap in Cross-Linguistic Research (Exemplified by the French and Russian Languages). P. 80–90

Версия для печати

Section: Linguistics

UDC

81’33

DOI

10.17238/issn2227-6564.2019.5.80

Authors

Galina V. Belikova
Moscow State Pedagogical University; prosp. Vernadskogo 88, Moscow, 119571, Russian Federation; e-mail: galatin@yandex.ru

Abstract

This article discusses the problem of the theoretical and empirical interpretation of interlingual gaps, whose taxonomic status has been disputed by a number of scholars. The identification, description and typing of subclasses of basic linguistic and extralinguistic (cultural) gap taxa are determined by the research context (cross-cultural or monolingual) and the objectives of the studies. At the same time, the typological diversity of gaps complicates the differentiation of their taxonomy by meaning. In this paper, a generalized meaning of the term gap is formulated, integrating various points of view on its essence and mediating the differentiation of intra- and interlingual gaps. The practicability and legitimacy of the interlingual interpretation of the gap are substantiated in terms of the ontological understanding of the essence of the gap and by comparing the selected French-Russian nonequivalents. It is suggested to distinguish between the interlingual gap and nonequivalent unit, since the significata of these terms lie outside of any (analytic/ synthetic) identity. The term interlingual gap reflects a different (in contrast with the intralingual gap) mode of the gap’s reality. Such an absence gap appears as a dynamic nonbeing, which, when discovered, supposes a culturally-specified being of a nonequivalent in language A. The interlingual gap is the absence gap, whose mode of reality is set by the limits of the correlation “foreign lexeme/phraseme of language A – segment of the lexico-semantic field of language B”. The absence gap should be distinguished from the blank gap, whose mode of reality stays within the system of one language, but can be identified against the background of another language. The epistemological phenomenon of the interlingual gap can be explained by the heterogeneous modes of reality of the gap as such: the attribute of the absence gap is its relativity, while the mode of the blank gap is the presence of a concept in the absence of its linguistic nomination.

Keywords

interlingual gap, concept, being-nonbeing, absence gap, blank gap
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