Antonomasia in the Context of Linguopragmatics and Linguoconflictology

Author’s name:
Alena R. Kotaeva, Lyudmila V. Kulumbegova South Ossetian State University named after A. A. Tibilov, Beslan, South Ossetia


Each linguistic culture and each historical period has its own regular instances of antonomasia. Mass culture, advertising, and Internet communication often become the source of modern antonomasias. This explains the current interest in antonomasia among experts in linguoculturology, who rightfully see in it a source of information about the culture and history of native speakers. Among many structural and semantic types of antonomasias, the authors single out antonomasias formed through pluralization of the proper name (the onym), classifying them as alleotets, since they are based on transformations at the level of grammatical category. Antonomasia also serves as an excellent reflection of the linguistic personality of the author, seen as a “conveyor” of certain meanings connected with the world of politics, culture, and the life of the society as a whole. Antonomasia based on the pluralization of personal names also forms part of the strategy of conflict communication in the media, which undoubtedly impacts the process of forming public opinion. The purpose of the article is to correlate the content of media antonomasias with the categories of linguopragmatics, ecolinguistics, and linguoconflictology. Using the example of the most typical antonomasias (i.e. those based on the pluralization of proper names), the authors analyze the cognitive mechanism of the formation of pragmatic meanings (first of all, those of pejorative nature) and determine the conflictogenic potential of antonomasias and their compliance with the system of modern ethical and speech standards. The article uses the material of modern media to analyze the pragmatic features of antonomasias which determine either their conflict-causing potential or, conversely, their compliance with the ecological parameters of modern communication. To analyze the pragmatic meaning of antonomasias the authors use the method of explication of associative-connotative semantics of onyms as well as cognitive-discursive analysis. The results of this analysis inevitably raises the question of antonomasias’ relevance and pragmatic correctness, especially since unwarranted melioratives are just as detrimental to well-balanced communication as unmotivated pejoratives. Using last names of authority figures in the plural with a pejorative meaning is just as destructive as undeserved praise conveyed through meliorative anthroponyms, as neither strategy meets the modern requirements of linguoecological thinking and ethical and speech standards.

DOI: 10.47388/2072-3490/lunn2022-59-3-9-20
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Key words pantonomasia; pluralization of onyms; pejorativeness; linguoconflictology; ethico-linguistic standard; ecolinguistics

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