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Face in the Hijazi Idioms: What Does It Reveal?

Najah Ali Al-Jahdali
International Journal of Linguistics , Volume 13, pp 85-106; doi:10.5296/ijl.v13i2.18578

Abstract: This cognitive semantic corpus-based study attempts to outline the biological and social role/s regarding the face in the Hijazi Dialect of Arabic (HDA). The aim is to check the embodied conceptualization in relation to the kinds of emotions, character qualities, and cultural values (Maalej and Yu, 2011) that Hijazi face idioms represent in the conceptual system of HDA-speakers. This paper uses the theoretical framework of the Conceptual Theory of Metaphor and Metonymy (CTMM) (Lakoff & Johnson (1980), Lakoff (1987), and Kövecses (2002)) in analyzing the specific cognitive structures (i.e. conceptual metaphor/s, conceptual metonym/ies, image schema/s) that are thought to be implemented in the conceptual system of those speakers. It also agrees and incorporates Kövescses (2002), Maalej (2004), and Yu's (2009) views on the importance of experience, embodiment, and culture when analyzing idioms to dig beneath what appears on the surface in the form of idiomatic expressions referred by Yu (2002) as the "tip of the iceberg". Representing a rather conservative society, face is seen as a strong reflection of the culture and values embedded in the Hijaz.
Keywords: face / embodiment / idioms / HDA / speakers / Lakoff / Maalej / Hijazi / structures

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