Mid Term 2 Study Guide

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23 Aug 2010
School
Department
Course
Professor
Anthropology Midterm #2 Review
Linguistic and Semiotic Anthropology
Lecture #1
1. What is linguistics?
The study of language
2. What is semiotics?
The study of signs
3. Is the biological character of language a thing or an action?
It is an action.
4. What is the ZZÁ[vZ}(Á[}(ovPµPM
The hardware is the brain and the software is syntax, morphology, and phonology
5. What are the material products and immaterial effects of language?
The material products are speech (sound waves) and text (marks on paper, print, digital display)
6. What is the Innateness Hypothesis and who proposed it?
Zt}v[^ov_ovPµPVZ]o]Ç}(}^Ào}_ovPµP]]vv]v,}u}]v[v]
was proposed by Noam Chomsky
7. What do all languages draw from?
All languages Á(}uo]u]}(}]oo]vPµ]](µZÁ^}Puu_}
learn easily
8. Why can we understand Yoda?
Because he uses linguistic rules that are humanly possible and are found in some languages
9. What is an example of a linguistic rule that our brain does not learn easily?
The words in a question put backwards, rules like these are not found in any language
10. What does language do?
Makes it possible to communicate and organizes (creates) reality
11. What are the social aspects of language?
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How language functions/ is used in society, differentiation, communication, and construction of
reality
12. What is differentiation in language?
Languages and dialects exist, the difference is determined politically and socially
13. Provide examples of languages and dialects.
Languages = Danish, Norwegian, Russian, etc.
Dialects = Chinese dialects, Italian dialects
14. What are sociolects/social dialects?
They differentiate class, gender, and ethnicity in the same geographic location and within the same
language/dialect
15. What are foreign accents?
They distinguish between native and foreign born
16. tZ]Zo]o^µµo]_}uuµv]]}vu}oM
Encoding and decoding from a speaker (sender) to a channel and then a hearer (receiver)
17. What does this model assume, and is it likely to be true?
It assumes that there is an uncoded message independent of language and it is probably not true
18. tZ]uvÇZ}vµ]}v[vZo]Ç[]vZZ}vµ]}v}(o]Ç[M
Construction = formation by/in society and is not a part of nature
Reality= the world as it makes sense to us; the way we understand the world
19. How is it constructed? And is it objective?
It is socially constructed and it is not necessarily objective
20. How does language construct reality?
It creates an understanding of distinct concepts and categories as if they were a part of the objective
world
21. What is an example of language constructed reality?
dZ]v}]]v]}vÁvZPv[vZ[]vuvÇovPµP]voµ]vP}oZ]vU}o
Japanese, Vietnamese and Sioux
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22. What is meant by perception and interpretation in language?
Our understanding of the world through language
23. What is semiotics? Provide basic examples and state an important feature of semiotics.
Semiotics is the study of signification. Examples are words and pictures but the image never equals
the words
24. tZ]Z}v]}v[M
tZZ]Pv^]_
25. tZ]Z}vv}]}v[M
tZZ]PvZµPP[
Lecture #2
26. How do we signify behaviour?
Using verbal signs (language) and nonverbal signs
27. What are some examples of nonverbal signs?
Pictures, gestures, fashions and almost all objects
28. What are the social aspects of signs?
Verbal/nonverbal signs, differentiation, communication and construction o f reality
29. What is differentiation through signs? Provide examples
Appearances used to communicate qualities or aspects. Examples are fashion, and the food we eat
30. How is communication used through nonverbal signs? Provide an example.
It is usually indirect (not face to face). An example would be traffic signs
31. What is the classical (Saussurean/Structuralist) view of signification?
dZ]v]}vÁvZZ]Pv](][vZZ]Pv](][
32. What is the structuralist view of the sign?
Signifier + signified = sign
33. What are the three kinds of relationships between the signifier and signified?
Symbol, icon, and text
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