Stylistic Functions of Grammar Categories and the Role of Transposition.

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  • Topic: Grammatical number, Inflection, Pronoun
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ransposition of lexico-grammatical classes of nouns.

Stylistic function of articles, genitive case, plural number.

Stylistic functions of different grammatical categories in different parts of speech.

1) Stylistic transposition of pronouns.

2) Adjectives, stylistic function of degrees of comparison.

3) Stylistic functions of verbal categories.

4) Stylistic functions of adverbs.

Style is less investigated on the morphological level than on any other one because very many scholars hold the opinion that stylistic connotations appear only when the use of grammatical phenomenon departs from the normative usage and functions on the outskirts or beyond the system of Standard language.

Nevertheless stylistic connotations don’t necessarily mean the violation of the normative speech patterns. They are based on different cases of transposition.

Transposition is the usage of different parts of speech in unusual grammatical meaning which breaks the usual correlation within a grammatical category and is used to express the speaker’s emotions and his attitude to the object of discussion. It is the shift from one grammatical class to another, controversy between the traditional and situational reference on the level of morphology. (I.V.A.)

1. Transposition of lexico-grammatical class (LGC) of NOUNS:

Transposition of nouns is based on the usage of nouns in unusual lexico-grammatical class (LGC), thus causing a stylistic effect. According to their usual LGC they are subdivided into:

Personal nouns (agents) (man, woman, children)

Living beings (birds, cats, dogs)

Collective nouns (mankind, peerage)

Material nouns (water, stone)

Abstract nouns (clarity, kindness), etc.

Transposition from one LGC to another causes expressive, evaluative, emotive and functional connotations. Thus transposition of personal nouns denoting animals to those denoting people causes metaphorization and appearance of zoo morphemes: ass, bear, beast and bitch. Pig, donkey, monkey may have tender but ironical connotation, while swine, ass, ape acquire rude, negative coloring. Negative connotation is intensified by emphatic constructions: you impudent pup, you filthy swine”.

I was not going to have all the old tabbies bossing her around just because she is not what they call “our class” (A.Wilson)

Emotive and expressive connotations are achieved in transposition of abstract nouns into personal nouns (abstract nouns used in plural): “The chubby little eccentricity :: a chubby eccentric child.”

Transposition of parts of speech (A>N): “Listen, my sweet (coll.)”, a man of intelligence, a flush of heat (bookish). Stylistic functions of the Genitive case, plural number and the articles The genitive case is considered to be a formal sign of personification alongside with the personal pronouns ‘he and she’ referred to inanimate objects. The genitive case is limited in its usage to the LGC of nouns denoting living beings: my father’s room, George’s sister. When used with nouns of some other class the genitive case gets emotive coloring and an elevated ring: “England’s troubles. My country’s laws”.

“^ The trees had eagerness in every turg, stretching their buds upward to the sun’s warmth; the blackbirds were in song” (J. Galsworthy)

The suffix‘s’ may be also added to the phrase or to the whole sentence: She’s the boy I used to go with’s mother. He’s the niece, I told you about’s husband. A comic effect is achieved due to many factors:

The suffix is added not to a stem but to a noun, followed by a subordinate clause.

Logical incompatibility of the following words placed together: she’s the boy; he’s the niece; about’s husband.

The use of^ Plural number in unusual collocations is also a source of expressiveness: One I’m – sorry – for –you is worth twenty I – told – you – so’s. The sentence has a jocular ring because a plural ending ’s’ is added to the whole sentence together...
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