LINGUIST List 30.3374

Fri Sep 06 2019

Calls: Historical Linguistics, Morphology, Semantics / Lexis (Jrnl)

Editor for this issue: Sarah Robinson <>

Date: 06-Sep-2019
From: Denis Jamet <>
Subject: Historical Linguistics, Morphology, Semantics / Lexis (Jrnl)
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Full Title: Lexis

Linguistic Field(s): Historical Linguistics; Morphology; Semantics

Subject Language(s): English

Call Deadline: 31-Jan-2020

Call for Papers:

Lexical semantics is a field of semantics dealing with the study of meaning in words and expressions. The diachronic perspective allows for the study of meaning through time, and therefore holds the additional benefit of considering lexical meaning as being subject to change rather than being purely conventional. The timescale of diachronic study can naturally span as little as a few decades or, alternatively, can cover several centuries. As far as the semantic approach is concerned, it is of course understood that all approaches to meaning are equally acceptable and interesting, and that includes cognitive semantics, componential feature-based semantics, structuralist semantics and other approaches as can be found in the overview of semantic theories in Geeraerts [2009].

This edition welcomes papers of exploratory descriptive, or theoretical nature. Both onomasiological and semasiological approaches may be used, and potentially combined, for this edition, which purports to provide an overview of research in a field which is growing rapidly.

Papers may focus on how to identify instances of semantic change, which methods and techniques can be used to detect change reliably, and how to assess change both quantitatively and qualitatively (see Allan & Robinson [2012]).

Naturally, the question of the motivation behind semantic change will be a key aspect. In particular, it will be worth identifying and distinguishing occurrences of so-called natural change such as metaphor and metonymy from change which is viewed as irregular or sporadic (see Blank [1999], Traugott et Dasher [2005], Koch [1999], [2012]). Discussions regarding the relative prominence of metaphorical and metonymical change will be welcome, and in particular any papers addressing formal issues, such as the following. How do metaphor and metonymy relate to one another (see Koch [1999], [2012], Kovecses & Radden [1998]) and is one more essential, or systematic, than the other ? Can either metonymy or metaphor account for other types of less systematic, less frequent, sporadic change such as sound symbolic change? (For issues of semantic change see Koch [1999], and for issues of phonosymbolic change see Smith [2016]). Another question worth pondering is how essential mechanisms of lexical semantic change such as metonymy and metaphor relate to grammaticalisation (Traugott & Dasher [2005]), and what is the relation between major mechanisms of semantic change with analogical or sporadic change in the lexicon (see Joseph [1998], Miller [2014])?

These questions lead to the essential issue of propagation of change, methods for quantifying patterns of change, and assessing the importance or regularity of trajectories of change, as with the theory of S-curve propagation (Blythe & Croft [2012]).

See full CFP at

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