- About project
- Results and Awards
- Affiliate Programs
- International services
Sumy State University, Ukraine
Championship participant: the National Research Analytics Championship - "Ukraine";
The article is devoted to the question of proper names deviation and dependence of proper names chosing on society, social position and personal qualities of characters. The main focus in concentrated on assimilation of borrowed proper names in the chosen fairy tale discourse.
Keywords: proper names, communicative aspects, semantics, fabulous discourse, pragmatic orientation, allusion.
В статье рассматривается вопрос семантической девиации имен собственных и зависимость выбора имени от социума, общественного положення и личных качеств литературного персонажа. Внимание фокусируется на ассимиляции заимствованных имен собственных в условиях выбранного сказочного дискурса.
Ключевые слова: имена собственные, коммуникативный аспект, семантика, сказочный дискурс, прагматическая направленность, аллюзия.
The article is devoted to polyfunctioning of proper names, focusing on their communicative aspect in English fairy tale discourse. Such linguists as Superanskaia A. , Spivak S. , Yarova S.  and many others devoted their works to proper names and their communicative-cognitive modus researching. Still communicative aspect of proper names in fairy tale discourse is not totally investigated and demands especial attention of contemporary researchers.
The object of the article is proper names. The subject of researching is decoding of communicative information, implicated in proper names, that helps to understand narrator’s message to readers completely. Urgency of the topic is connected with constantly growing interest of linguists to semantic, communicative and pragmatic meaning of proper names in fairy tale discourse.
The aim of the article is to investigate communicative influence of proper names on the addressee and to distinguish main means of onyms creating and specification of their usage in English fairy tale discourse.
Contemporary linguistics pays significant attention to communicative and pragmatic aspects of fairy tale discourse and its constituents. Proper names are obligatory component of fairy tale discourse and contain semantic, communicative and pragmatic meaning. According to New Webster’s Dictionary definition, proper name is a word or group of words (such as “Noah Webster,” “Kentucky,” or “U.S. Congress”) that is the name of a particular person, place, or thing and that usually begins with a capital letter . Proper names became codes of background knowledge, specifically compressed and nationally coloured texts which keep in their semantic memory cultural and historic subjects mingled in social consciousness [2, p. 1]. With the help of proper names the narrator tries not only to identify a certain object, but inform something about this object or even connect some extra information with this name and also express feelings connected with this object, value it [3, p. 233]. Proper names not only characterize their owners, but with the help of their inner forms indicate motivations to psychological and physical indication of the owner, his habits and hobbies, his activity. For instance, in J. R. R. Tolkien’s novel “The Lord of the Rings” the author associates hobbits, who are nice and friendly short creatures with plants and animals, giving them appropriate names. Confer: Peony (“піон”), Daisy (“маргаритка”), Gilly (from English “gillyflower” – “левкой сивий”), Brockhouse (brock – застаріле “барсук”), Brandybuck (давньоанглійське “bucc” – “самець оленя”) .
Means of nomination and images taken as the basis of a name are ethnically proved in spite that typical nature and anthropological universals are present in name imagery. Names and nicknames in colloquial speech are connected with realities, traditions, religion. Culture and social life of certain society are reflected in proper names [1, p. 22]. In fairy tale discourse the narrator intends to express the idea of his work through description of his characters. Naming a character proper name becomes a thematic word. Due to its bifunctionality a name is accepted and associated together with a character, obtains the right not only to indicate a certain object but also to be its so called characterological representative. Ethnically and anthropologically based proper names clearly show bright typical features of a certain character, creating various qualification of main and moreover secondary characters and emotional background of communicative situation in general. Here works a traditional literary method of introducing in a piece of fiction characters proper names of whose possess extra thematic meaning. Such names are not obligatory for main characters, nature and personality of which are mainly clear and understandable in fairy tale discourse [1, p. 287]. Uniting together they create various qualification of a character which is included in forming meaningful structure of a name.
Communicative aspect of fairy tale discourse is represented by a triad of narrator – character – reader. Typical feature of this communication is narrator’s ability to address readers through his characters or personally by himself. The author’s world in this case obtains special significance. On one hand, revealing some aspects of the text, it makes accepting of the information easier. On the other hand, mingling with characters’ world it makes reception in author’s and reader’s dialogue more complicated. Main communicative intention of author’s introductions in English fairy tales is to draw reader’s attention to fairy tale accepting and adjusting him to appropriate mood. If the text of fairy tale was accepted and understood, it means that narrator has coped with his communicative mission [6, p. 114]. It is relevantly to mention here that the narrator can influence the reader directly and suggestively.
In fiction the appeal of proper names to common names is presented in so called speaking names. These names having become proper on the basis of common names tend again to common names which denote features more typical for the character. This can be seen from the scheme COMMON NAME → PROPER NAME → COMMON NAME. Character’s name is an important factor in literature works creating. It actualizes author’s pragmatic direction of the text to reader’s interaction. Extra characterological meaning of speaking proper names of fairy tale characters is marked by semantic diversity and obligatory directing on the reader, his age and psychological peculiarities. For instance, in fairy tales by Roger Hargreaves main characters’ names implicate positive or negative human features. Confer: Little Miss Helpful, Little Miss Shy, Little Miss Fun, Little Miss Trouble, Little Miss Chatterbox, Little Miss Late, Little Miss Lucky, Little Miss Busy, Little Miss Quick, Little Miss Wise, Little Miss Greedy [7, p. 10].
Connotative meaning of anthroponym helps to transfer author’s attitude to his characters, to add realiasm to the situation, to create friendly atmosphere and characterizes the owner of the name. Extralingual connotation comes from the qualities of the object. In this case extra evaluative load of proper names is in its denotative meaning, feelings and associations are connected not with the onym itself but with its owner [8, p. 15].
In the examples from J. Rowling’s books about Harry Potter we understand that deliberate transforming of foreign anthroponym with the help of affixes or extra words reveals social status or educational level of the speaker or author’s negative and arrogant attitude to the character whom he gives such name.
Confer: She had rounded the corner and vanished from view before Uncle Vernon’s voice floated out of the window again.”Dudders out for tea? . – Она уже завернула за угол и скрылась из виду, когда из окна опять поплыл голос дяди Вернона. – Значит, Дудлика пригласили в гости на чай. – Щойно вона завернула за ріг і зникла з його поля зору, як з вікна знову долинув голос дядька Вернона: – Дадік пішов до когось на чай?
“You don’t tell her to shut her face. What about “Popkin” and “Dinky Diddydums”, can I use them then?” . – А ей ты не говоришь “заткни свой поганый рот”… Так как насчет “Попкин” или “Динки Дуддидум”? Мне можно тебя так называть? – А їй ти не радиш заткнути пельку. Ну, може, тоді “Попульчик” або “Гарнюній Дадасик”? Так можна називати?
From given above examples we can see that with the help of English suffixes -kins, -dum, -er, the author shows us Harry’s contemptuous attitude to his cousin characterizing Dudley not positively. In Ukrainian and Russian versions for achieving the same effect stylistically marked suffixes -ік, -ічк, -асик, -ик, -икин, -дум are also used.
Choice of name and surname for the character is a stylistic method of many authors for deeper revealing the sense of the book. When a proper name nominates a character, it immediately gets a purpose not only to indicate a denoted object but to give it the sense and the characteristics which the narrator implicates in it. So in this way onym denotes character’s qualities. Proper names from J. Rowling’s books about Harry Potter can serve as an example of such processes as appealing vector transferring. For example, we have such proper names as Albus Dumbledore and Voldemort. Analyzing these names we can come to the conclusion that they denote all the sense of identified by them objects very precisely. According to the fairy tale about Harry Potter Albus Dambledore is a kind wizard who teaches white magic. It is appropriate to mention here that from Latin albus is a white colour, that is the colour which is constantly associated with kindness, purity and wisdom. Voldemort is a negative character who rules the evil forces, carries death and destruction. In this very case analyzing the onym itself we can understand the meaning of this proper name, as far as its stem mort means death [10, p. 57]. Semantic meaning of this onym has so negative and evil basis that all the characters of the book have fear of even that wizard’s name. They use substitutions for his name and the one who dares pronounce his name is interrupted on half a word. Confer: Engl. You-Know-Who, Ukr. Сам-Знаєш-Хто; Engl. He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, Ukr. Той-Кого-Не-Можна-Називати; Engl. You-Know-Who’s-Name, Ukr. Ім’я-Сам-Знаєш-Кого.
Anthroponyms can be classified as occasional which call linguistic associations and allusive which call extralinguistic associations. Allusion implementation imposes excessive demands on reader’s erudition, culture and knowledge. Allusions intensify esthetic influence of fiction on readers [1, p. 237]. This influence is based on intensive associative connections which combine text and extralingual reality. With the help of metaphorical proper names text is somehow connected with people and events of different epochs, cultures and also other literature texts. The reason of this is in great variety of metaphorical proper names. They consist of the names of historical personalities, mythological characters, literature characters, references to historical events.
One of the examples of characters possessing allusive names in fairy tales about Harry Potter is main positive wizard – the headmaster of Hogwarts Albus Dumbledore. The first information Harry got concerning Albus Dumbledore was about his conquering a wicked wizard named Grindelwald. Out of this two allusions come. Firstly, the name Grindelwald is similar to the name of monster Grendel from Norway saga of the 8th century Beowulf and Grendel. It is followed by the next interesting observation concerning connection between Grindelwald and Dumbledore. The second name of Dumbledore is Wulfric. We can divide these names the following way: Beowulf into beo – bee –“бджола” and wulf – wolf –“вовк”; Wulfric (Dumbledore’s second name) into wulf – wolf – “вовк” and ric – power –“влада, правління” [10, p. 60]. If to take into consideration that Dumbledore conquered Grindelwald we may consider that Dumbledore’s second name is allusion to Beowulf and the name Grindelwald is allusion to Grendel.
Another relevant example is Granger Hermione. Hermione – is the queen in Shakespeare’s “The Winter Tale” who is an example of dignity without arrogance, love without passion, tenderness without weakness. The same features J. Rowling gives to main character’s friend. This image is also interesting because surname Granger means “farmer”, so the heroine is of low origin but can become a queen [10, p. 63]. In the fairy tale Hermione comes from non-magical family that’s why some wizards consider her to be of not proper origin, but due to her abilities she became the best student of the school – and can be named a queen.
So we come to the conclusion that communicative aspects of proper names in English fairy tale discourse are reflected in semantic variety of proper names and their structural peculiarities. The main function of proper names in fairy tale discourse is not just nominate a character but evoke certain reader’s emotions and render implicated in proper names narrator’s message to next generations. Exactly through proper names the author transfers decoded information about characters, their role and place in fairy tale discourse and society. Proper names can be considered the renders of objectively logical, esthetic, figurative, emotional and evaluative information.
1. Суперанская А. В. Общая теория имени собственного / А. В. Суперанская. – М. : УРСС, 2007. – 368 с.
2. Співак С. М. Власна назва в композиційно-смисловій структурі віршованих текстів американської поезії: комунікативно-когнітивний підхід: Автореферат. – Київ, 2004. – 19 с.
3. Ярова С. А. Функціонування власних назв у художньому тексті та проблема їх перекладу // Філологічні студії. – Луцьк, 2004. – №1. – С. 230–235.
6. Бехта І. А. Дискурс наратора в англомовній прозі. – Київ : Грамота, 2004. – 304 с.
7. Hargreaves R. Mr. Tickle’s Tickly Day. – Handforth, Cheshire : Egmont World Ltd., 1999. – 11 p.
8. Нефьодова О. Д. Особливості лінгвостилістичної організації тексту британської літературної казки: автореферат дис. … канд. філол. наук: 10.02.04 / Харків. нац. ун-т ім. В. Н. Каразіна. – Х., 2001. – 18 с.
10. Бережна М. В. Антропонімія дитячої літератури жанру фентезі // Нова філологія : Збірник наукових праць. – Запоріжжя : ЗНУ, 2007. – № 27. – 333 с.