Professor Marcela Swiatkowska, Jagiellonian University, Poland
Prof. dr. Marcela Swiatkowska is a Profesor in Linguistics and actually dean of the Faculty of Philology at the Jagiellonian University in Cracow where she received her Phd (1977), habilitation (1988) and professorship (2000). Between 1991 and 2002 she was director of the Institute of Romance Philology and still is the head of the Chair of Linguistics.
Her main field of research is semantics and pragmatics. She was first interested by the semantic representation of temporal meaning in French language. She is an author of a book dedicated to the problem of tense, aspect, Aktionsart L’imparfait en français moderne. Contribution à l’étude du temps et de l’aspect (1988). Since a long time her research interest are also focused on the verbal representation of emotions. She published several articles concerning mainly the French interjections. In her last book Entre dire et faire. De l’interjection (2000) she makes a presentation of this class of words and deals with the problem of the construction of the meaning of interjection.
Abstract Semantics of interjection
This paper deals with the problem of the construction of the meaning of interjection. This category of words is usually described as contextually dependent. I claim that there are some semantic values in the interjection which decide about the choice the speaker is making. I want to show that interjections are indexical expressions, but this is necessary, in order to identify other semantic constituents, to use the information given by the interpretive paraphrases, the previous context or the stereotyped knowledge.
I also try to analyze the category of interjections in order to present the extent to which these expressions are used for describing the world and to show their role in the construction of characters. In other words, I try to describe two linguistic ways of constructing the world, both of which employ interjections. The first of them pivots on the use of onomatopoeia, the second one – on the use of stereotypical expressions like Oh là là!, Wow! Thanks to the appropriate use of interjections interpreters of the description are able to situate a character in certain social and cultural milieu.