General Linguistic Peculiarities of Modernist Verbal Portrait

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Mariam Zedelashvili


The paper examines general linguistic peculiarities of modernist verbal portrait on the material of “Winesburg, Ohio” by Sherwood Anderson. The first five short stories (Hands, Paper Pills, Mother, The Philosopher, Nobody Knows ) have been analyzed from the standpoints of conceptual metaphor theory, semantics, linguo-stylistics, discourse analysis and literary studies. The research has shown that a modernist verbal portrait differs considerably from the character portraits evidenced in literary works of previous epochs. Anderson, as one of the founders of literary modernism, does not provide the reader with detailed physical descriptions of his characters; instead, he singles out a couple of relevant (in his viewpoint) features and by using them recurrently throughout the narrative displays character personalities. It has been observed that one particular physical feature may serve a number of purposes: show a character’s mood, reveal his/her inner world or emotional state. Anderson places special emphasis on the emotional and cognitive processes of his characters and by turning physical details into symbols he achieves his goal.

Published: Oct 25, 2022

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