[lg policy] book notice: Language and Social Cognition: Expression of the Social Mind Pishwa (Ed)

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at GMAIL.COM
Thu Sep 10 14:19:13 UTC 2009

Language and Social Cognition: Pishwa (Ed)

Title: Language and Social Cognition
Subtitle: Expression of the Social Mind
Series Title: Trends in Linguistics. Studies and Monographs [TiLSM] 206
Published: 2009
Publisher: Mouton de Gruyter

Book URL: http://degruyter.de/cont/fb/sk/detailEn.cfm?id=IS-9783110205862-1

Editor: Hanna Pishwa


In a collection of 16 papers, eminent scholars from several disciplines
present diverse and yet cohering perspectives on the expression of social
knowledge, its acquisition and management. Hence, the volume is an attempt
to view the social functions of language in a novel, systematic way. Such
an approach has been missing due to the complexity of the matter and the
emphasis on purely cognitive properties of language.

The volume starts with a presentation of overarching issues of the social
nature of humans and their language, providing strong evidence for the
social fundaments of human nature and their reflection in language and
culture. The second section demonstrates how social functions can be
displayed in discourse by using language play and humor, irony and
attributions as well as references to social schemas. The chapters in the
third part examine a wide range of particular linguistic elements carrying
social-cognitive functions. An important finding is that social-cognitive
functions have to be inferred on the basis of social knowledge, frequently
with the help of non-verbal cues, since languages offer only few direct
expressions for them. In other words, linguistic devices used to express
social content tend to be multifunctional. Interestingly, this
multifunctionality does not prevent their rapid recognition.

The volume presents valuable information to linguists by widening the
cognitive-linguistic framework and by contributing to a better
understanding of the role of pragmatics. It is also beneficial to social
and cognitive psychologists by offering a broader view on the encoding and
decoding of social aspects. Finally, it offers a number of fruitful ideas
to students of cultural and communication studies.

See this book announcement on our website:

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